Words! (8 of 12) by Jerry Vines

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WORDS! (8 of 12)
Proverbs for Parents
Jerry Vines
Proverbs 12
10/20/02

I want to talk to you about words for a little while
this morning. "Sticks and stones may break my bones,
but words will never hurt me." Have you ever heard
that? Probably you learned that, like it did, when you
were real young and going through the experience of
school. Somebody said something to you that was pretty
brutal or very unkind and you have been taught to
reply, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but
words will never hurt me."

Tell that to Erica Harrold, our new Miss America.
There was an interesting article this week about her
in the newspaper. It said that the new Miss America
was picked on and threatened by her fellow students in
the 9th grade. It says that she was called a variety
of unmentionable names in the 9th grade. She came from
a multi-cultural background. She received anonymous
telephone threats against her life. Eggs were thrown
against her family home. Somebody mysteriously cut off
their power one night. She didn't go to a
stereotypical poor or high crime institution. Quite
the opposite. She went to a school for gifted
students. When her parents transferred her to a
conventional public high school, her harassment
problems evaporated. She went on to graduate with
honors from the University of Illinois and has been
accepted by the Harvard Law School.

"Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will
never hurt me." The truth of the matter is - words can
hurt you. You never forget them.

"Word will never hurt me." Say that to this 4th grader
whose parent brought James Dobson a note that was
placed on her desk. "Awful Susan: You are the
stinkiest girl in the world. I hope you die, but I
suppose that's impossible. I've got some ideas - 1.
Play in the road; 2. Cut your throat; 3. Drink poison;
4. Get drunk; 5. Knife yourself. Please do this, you
ugly girl. We all hate you. I'm praying, O ...


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