Bully Movie Gains Support of Celebrities, Politicians, Businesses, Sports and the Fashion World

17 March 2012

Very rarely does something bring together a host of people from all walks of life, but the movie Bully, and a protest against its rating by the MPAA has united men and women of myriad backgrounds.

Bully is a powerful, thought-provoking documentary that raises awareness about bullying in our nation’s schools. It chronicles the lives of five students and their families who suffer from the effects of bullying. For example, the documentary highlights two families who’ve actually lost their children to suicide after they were incessantly bullied by peers. It also tells the story of a mother and her 14-year-old daughter who was incarcerated after bringing a gun onto a school bus.

Bully Movie Gains Support of Celebrities, Politicians, Businesses, Sports and the Fashion WorldThe anti-bully movement has been — and continues to be — a strong one in the United States. This documentary, though, has sparked controversy after the MPAA  rated this movie “R.” An “R” rating means that the children and teens who need to see this film most — the bullies, the bully-enablers and the bullied themselves — won’t be allowed to.

Katy Butler, who was bullied by her peers after coming out as a lesbian in the 7th grade and has since founded Change.org, has created a campaign on her website that’s collected over 300,000 signatures in hopes of changing the MPAA’s mind. Those who’ve signed the petition include the likes of Ellen DeGeneres, Meryl Streep, Justin Bieber and 26 Congress members.

Others are getting involved too, including Tommy Hilfiger, Anderson Cooper and Kelly Ripa. Hilfiger will design and sell an exclusive t-shirt inspired by Bully with proceed portions benefitting Facing History and Ourselves. Also, Kelly Ripa and Anderson Cooper hosted a screening of Bully at the Crosby Hotel on March 12. Among the guests were David LaChapelle, Courtney Love, Michelle Trachtenburg, Andre Leon Talley, Rachel Roy and Paul Haggis.

Even after much protesting from Hollywood, fashion, business and political figures, the MPAA chief has held firm on the “R” rating, says the Boston Herald.

Some do agree with the MPAA’s rating, saying the topics covered are too extreme for younger audiences. The problem is that these very topics, which include violence and sexuality, are commonplace in our nation’s primary and secondary schools, despite what many parents may believe. In fact, these topics are often prominent in bullying situations.

You can sign the petition at Change.org.

By Wendy Rose Gould

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Posted by Wendy Rose Gould at 02:28 AM
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