Vote 2020 graphic
Everything you need to know about and expect during
the most important election of our lifetimes

Octavia Spencer Thinks We’re in Grave Danger of Overusing ‘Bullying’

Illustration for article titled Octavia Spencer Thinks We’re in Grave Danger of Overusing ‘Bullying’

Now, Octavia Spencer isn't saying that Jennifer Livingston should not have used her local news pulpit to tell some asshole personal injury attorney to mind his own business and stop judging her body — Spencer is just saying that Livingston wasn't "bullied," per se. Speaking to a reporter at GLSEN's Respect Awards in Beverly Hills, Spencer said, "She [Livingston] stood up for herself and I appreciate that. I don't necessarily know that it was bullying."

Advertisement

Octavia Spencer would know, too, since, according to E!, she recently directed a short film about bullying inspired by a Rudyard Kipling poem, which, knowing Kipling's nationalistic propensities as we do, is probably an allegory for how the British Empire can totally oppress anyone, anytime, anywhere. Anyway, directing (and writing) that film helped show Spencer that bullying is really a relentless gauntlet that its victims have to run every single day. Bullying is a kid getting a daily punch in the arm from some goon who will grow up to sell used cars and eat meatloafs out of a slow cooker every Wednesday and Friday night for dinner. Or something. Spencer drew a distinction between "being criticized," which is what unfortunately happened to Livingston, and "facing coercion or physical repercussions on a daily basis." She added, "I think we have to be very careful about using and overusing the term [bullying] because we desensitize ourselves to it."

Advertisement

Spencer cautioned, however, that she is no "bullying expert," she's just a woman who's probably tired of hearing all the nuance leak out of the English language.

The Help's Octavia Spencer: Jennifer Livingston Wasn't Bullied [E!]

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

queenhobart
queenhobart

"Bullying is a kid getting a daily punch in the arm from some goon who will grow up to sell used cars and eat meatloafs out of a slow cooker every Wednesday and Friday night for dinner "

That was unessecary, dude. That's just saying some coded classist mess. And it's a nice fiction to think bullies will have their comeuppance someday, but they don't always. Furthermore, how is selling cars and eating time and money efficient dinners a life that a bully deserves for their bullying?