If Bullying Is The Reason For Gun Violence, Kids Are Not The Solution.

If Bullying Is The Reason For Gun Violence, Kids Are Not The Solution.

What if the biggest bullies kids encounter aren't at school but in their own homes?

Today students are walking out of their class rooms in protest of gun violence and in solidarity with those lives lost senselessly and all to often by gun in America. They walked out in hopes of a change- in policy, in politics, in people. They walked out with hope that finally, after all these years of being told by parents, teachers and mentors that they had a voice today would be the day their voice was finally heard. They read about Martin Luther King and Sojourner Truth in their textbooks and they felt the power of those people and the millions of others who joined with them in movements across this nation armed with nothing but their voice course through their veins as they too felt their own voice being called to a current movement. They wept with this nation as their friends, and kids their own age across the country were carried out in body bags. They walked out for those kids, they walked out for their friends, they walked out for their lives.

They walked out as leaders, as activists, as people who hurt for other people, as children with empathy and good hearts. They walked out with the world at their fingertips and the betterment of humanity in their souls, they walked out, and they were bullied. These kids were bullied and not by a troubled kid lurking in the hallway, not by each other… by countless adults of older generations.

I have seen many posts since the Parkland tragedy and leading up to this student walk out about bullying, about walking up to others and being kind instead of walking out. While we should encourage our kids to walk up and be kind everyday how do we expect them to exemplify kindness, compassion and empathy when they are bullied by generations older for making their own attempt at standing up for others based in those very values?

How can older generations tell these kids repeatedly that the only way to stop this violence they are so afraid of is to stop bullying and be kind while simultaneously bullying them for doing what they think is right, logging onto social media and spewing hate about it and then still expect things to change?

Maybe constantly calling younger generations lazy, entitled, stupid, or over dramatic isn’t the best way to guide our youth into being hardworking, independent, caring individuals?

Maybe lumping all the future of America in with a few hundred idiots who ate Tide Pods and saying none of that generation deserve a voice because of it isn’t the best way to empower free thinking and standing up for what you believe in?

Maybe writing on social media about how ending bullying is the end all to gun violence while calling people names and wishing ill on them for having different beliefs than you isn’t the best example for our youth?

Maybe calling young, passionate, inspired leaders names and telling them that their voice does not matter does not create the adults of tomorrow we so desperately need?

Maybe bullying our kids for doing the only thing they know how, the very thing they have been taught to do and for doing it from the raw place of pain and empathy isn't the solution to a better tomorrow?

Maybe the bullying that you are afraid is rotting our youth from the inside out is actually rotting our youth from the top- down?

Cover Image Credit: Yes Magazine

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Customer Service Expert, Gary Brewster of Oneida Provides Tips for Displaying Appreciation to Your Customers

By taking a more direct and proactive approach to managing your customers, you can open up a new avenue of success for your business.


Customer relationships are a core part of your business success. Many businesses that outperform their competitors are just more responsive in this area. By taking a more direct and proactive approach to managing your customers, you can open up a new avenue of success for your business. How can you display genuine appreciation to them? Here are tips and practices from customer service expert and accomplished entrepreneur, Gary Brewster in Oneida, Tennessee that you can adopt.

Event Sponsorship

There are many small signs of appreciation you can show to customers, but hosting an event provides significant evidence to customers that your business genuinely acknowledges and cares for their support. With these events, you can treat customers as guests - which can be a great way to elevate your relationship with them. After these events, you can follow-up with your customers, build upon that relationship, and gain additional insights into their expectations.

Customized Products and Services

Customers will be pleasantly surprised to see products specifically catered to their preferences. This shows that you do respond to their feedback and are appreciative of the information they provide. Also, you are reinforcing the fact that your business firmly puts a priority on their needs and is committed to elevating their experience. You can personalize your products through a couple of means, including offering them in certain colors, modifications, labels, and more.

Use Handwritten Notes

A handwritten note is one of the best ways to convey authenticity in your messages. When you use this medium for sending messages of appreciation to your customers, it generates a more positive response. In a world saturated with emails, social media messages, and mobile text, a handwritten letter can stand out. You can work with your team in organizing a schedule where customers are sent handwritten notes. These can especially work great for the holiday season as customers are more receptive to goodwill messages during this time.

Develop a Loyalty Program

While your business benefits form loyalty programs, they also make the customer feel more appreciated. For your most consistent customers, you are sending the message to them that their loyalty has not gone unnoticed and that you are truly grateful. When repeat business is rewarded, the long-term benefits will be valuable. Instead of merely creating a loyalty program from scratch, consider doing research and recognize specific purchasing patterns within your customer base. You can then highlight certain products they favor and make that the focal point of your loyalty program.

When it comes to maintaining a high standard of customer service, communication and goodwill are valuable. Showing appreciation to your customers is more than simply communicating with them, but also conveying a general sense of commitment to their needs. Your business stands to gain immensely by developing this unique approach to customer service. Consider adding more of these elements as you build your customer service strategy with your team.

About Gary Brewster:

Gary Brewster in Oneida, Tennessee is an entrepreneur and commercial roofing expert. Driven by building excellent relationships, he takes pride in providing the best customer service possible. As a business owner, his goals include delivering exceptional service, solving complex problems, and giving back to the community. Outside of the office, Gary enjoys spending time on his family farm with his wife, children, and grandchildren.

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The 2020 Race Is Feeling The Bern

Everything you need to know about Bernie Sanders entering the presidential race.


This morning, February 19, 2019, Brooklyn-born Bernie Sanders announced he is running for president once again.

Unlike his run in 2016, though, Sanders now joins a crowded field of progressive candidates, one of which is Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

In Sanders's own words, this campaign is "about taking on the powerful special interests that dominate our economic and political life". Sanders went on to say that this is a "pivotal and dangerous moment in American history," and "We are running against a President who is a pathological liar, a fraud, a racist, a sexist, a xenophobe and someone who is undermining American democracy as he leads us in an authoritarian direction".

In his interview with CBS, Sanders explained that it is "absolutely imperative that Donald Trump be defeated", and described candidates whom he is running alongside as his "friends".

Regarding policy issues, his focus remains the same as in previous years, planning to focus largely on women's reproductive rights, lower prices for prescription drugs, and criminal justice reform.

Sanders is also widely recognized because of his goal of universal healthcare. His Medicare-for-all bill that was drafted in 2017 outlines the establishment of a "national health insurance program to provide comprehensive protection against the costs of health-care and health-related services". According to estimates, however, such a plan would increase federal spending by $2.5 trillion a year.

When it comes to education, Sanders plans to make preschool for all 4-year-olds free, aiming to fund this plan through tax increases on the wealthy as well as Wall Street transactions.

More widely acknowledged is his "College For All Act", which would provide $47 billion a year to states in order to eliminate undergraduate tuition and fees at public colleges and universities. Additionally, the act would cut student loan interest rates nearly in half for undergrads.

In terms of social issues, Sanders is pro-choice when it comes to abortion rights and opposes policies which discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, such as Trump's push to ban transgender people from the military.

The New York Times discusses the idea that the political field of the 2020 run might leave Sanders a "victim of his own success", in that the multitude of Democratic candidates are embracing policies which Sanders championed in the last race.

"Ironically, Bernie's agenda for working families will be the Democratic Party's message in 2020, but he may not be the one leading the parade," said talk show host Bill Press.

Moreover, victories by women, minorities, and first-time candidates in the 2018 midterm elections suggest that "fresh energy" is preferred by Democrats, which potentially poses a challenge for Sanders.

Conversely, though, Sanders is also starting off with certain advantages, such as a "massive lead among low-dollar donors that is roughly equivalent to the donor base of all the other Democratic hopefuls combined".

Donald Trump responded to Sanders's announcement by saying, "First of all I think he missed his time, but... I like Bernie. He sort of would agree on trade... the problem is he doesn't know what to do about it. But I wish Bernie well."

By and large, Sanders is another strong candidate, and it will be interesting to see if he can generate the same energy and support now that he did in 2016.

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