Way to Go Dad: Ohio Man Makes His Daughter Walk Miles to School for Bullying on Bus
An Ohio father who made his daughter walk five miles to school as punishment for bullying has provoked a debate on parenting. After 10-year-old Kirsten was suspended for three days from the school bus for the second time because of bullying, she came home and told her dad she was going to need rides to school. Matt Cox decided to teach her a life lesson, though.
On Friday, Kirsten handed her dad the bus-suspension paperwork and said, “Daddy, you’re going to have to take me to school next week,” Cox, of Stanton, Ohio, said in the video posted to Facebook on Monday and seen more than 16 million times by now. He captioned the video, “Life lessons!!!!!”
“As you see this morning, she is learning otherwise,” Cox said in the video. He made his “lovely lady” trudge to school carrying a backpack and school supplies on a cold day while he followed behind in a car, offering commentary on entitlement and bullying.
“Bullying is unacceptable,” he said. “This is my small way of trying to stop it in my household.”
He added that many children feel entitled to privileges like being taken to school in the morning by car or bus.
“A lot of children today feel that the things their parents do for them is a right and not a privilege, such as parents taking their children to school in the morning or even bus rides to school in the morning.”
“All of that is a privilege and should be treated as such,” he continued, “so today, my beautiful daughter is going to walk five miles to school in 36-degree weather.”
The video has been shared more than 340,000 times as of Thursday morning. In the video, Cox asked children who watched it to remember that “bullying is unacceptable everywhere and will not be tolerated.”
“I know a lot of you parents are not going to agree with this, but that is alright because I am doing what I feel is right to teach my daughter a lesson to stop her from bullying,” Cox said in the video.
Cox told WTVG he thinks the punishment worked, but he would give his daughter those same consequences again if he had to.
In a Facebook update shared on Wednesday, Mr. Cox said his daughter had taken his words to heart. The 10-year-old told WTVG she herself had been bullied and now knows to be kind.
“I also hope that parents see the video and start holding their kids accountable for their actions and stop sweeping their child’s actions under the rug with the ideology that kids will be kids,” he said, according to News5. “We as parents need to stop the bullying on the home front because bullying only breeds bullying.”
Many of the 63,000 comments that have since popped up on his video have been positive, with parents of bullies and bullied alike thanking Mr. Cox for his parenting.
“As the grandparent of an autistic boy who has been the victim of neighborhood bullies, I applaud you! Too many parents do nothing,” read one reply.
Read another: “Wish more parents took the time to hold their children accountable for unacceptable behavior.”
However, some people were critical of how he went about his daughter’s punishment.
“Humiliate her by putting her on Facebook being punished. Irony,” one user commented.
“Ok but wait, is she bullying other kids, or did you stop to hear her explanation?” said another.
Earlier this year, in Virginia, another dad made his son jog to school after he was kicked off the bus for bullying, the Ledger-Enquirer reported.
“Our children are our future. Being a parent is a choice. Make sure you show your children you love them with hugs and discipline,” Bryan Thornhill wrote on Facebook. “Parenting isn’t always about being a friend ... (it’s) about leading them into the future.”