Bullied children in Illinois are often caused severe psychological and emotional harm by their perpetrators. When children can no longer handle the actions by the school bullies, some resort to bringing weapons to school and lashing out against those who have tormented them.

The Columbine shootings

In 1999, twelve students and one teacher at a high school in Colorado were killed by two of their fellow peers. After the attack, many wondered why these two students resorted to bringing guns to school and harming their peers. Although the two teenagers were originally only seen as killers, further investigations revealed that they were actually victims themselves. According to the New York Times, the two teenagers responsible for the Columbine shootings were persecuted by the jocks, popular kids and other high school bullies.

Research on weapons at school

According to recent research, which analyzed data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2011, children who have been bullied are three times more likely to bring weapons to schools. Discovery News states that this means there are approximately 200,000 children bringing weapons with them to school.

To come to this conclusion, researchers considered four various risk factors to determine what made children more likely to carry weapons with them. These included the following:

  • Having their property either stolen or damaged by others
  • Avoiding attending school because they do not feel safe while they are there
  • The prospect of involvement in a physical fight with another student
  • Risk of getting  injured or threatened with a weapon

When all of these risk factors were present in a situation, children were over 30 times more likely to carry a weapon with them while they attended school. Additionally, of the 20 percent of students who stated that they were bullying victims , 8.6 percent carried weapons. In comparison, only 4.6 percent of students who had not been bullied admitted that they brought a weapon to school.

The study also found that, according to CBS News, bullied students were more likely to be white, female and in lower grades at school. At the conclusion of this study, one of the researchers stated that the focus of anti-bullying strategies should not just be put on those children doing the bullying. Instead, it should also be put on bullied children who feel inclined to bring a weapon to protect themselves.

Even if children do not bring a weapon to school, the effects of bullying on its victims can still be severe. Parents who are concerned about the effects bullying is having on their child may benefit from consulting with an attorney who can take legal actions to stop the harassment from occurring.