Most adults can agree that the dynamics of children's friendships and interactions with their peers have radically changed since we were in school.

When we were younger, there were campaigns to stomp out everything.  We dared to resist drugs and violence through the D.A.R.E. program. We learned what containers to stay away from thanks to the bright green Mr. Yuk stickers. We learned about saying no to strangers with video assemblies in the cafetorium.  And our teachers would constantly reinforce the golden rule: do to others what you want them to do to you.

I'm not saying we lived in a world without bullying (because, trust me I have my own stories) but if your classmates failed to follow that golden rule, it was easier to escape their hurtful words once you got home to your family.  There was no Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram and a bunch of other apps that our children are using to connect with each other outside of school. We weren't getting alerts saying someone had commented on a photo or status like kids today are.

Some kids today are using technology in the wrong way and are using it to hurt their peers with hateful, hurtful words.  And that power that they feel behind the keyboard spills over to real life where bullies feel empowered to be just as mean to their victim's faces.  When it happens at such a young, impressionable age, kids who are being bullied start to develop low self esteem and in some drastic situations are trying to end their lives to make it stop.

It's heart breaking and absolutely not acceptable.  That's why Kathryn Billington and her team of volunteers have organized a rally at the Idaho State Capitol on Saturday, April 28 starting at 12 p.m., to stand up against bullying.  You're invited to come be part of the battle cry against bullying in our schools and community.  The rally organizers want you to be part of helping victims heal, protecting our future generations and holding bullies accountable for their actions.

The rally will include testimonials from bullying victims, loved ones of victims and reformed bullies, a tribute to victims lost to bullying, educational speakers who'll discuss mental health, signs of bullying and how to prevent it and how to identify those at risk for suicide and steps to prevent it, as well.

For more on this important and inspirational rally, check out the event on Facebook.

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