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California Mayor: Young Victims of School Bullying Should ‘Just Grow a Pair’

Cameron Hamilton, the mayor of Porterville, California, is under fire for saying that victims of school bullying should “grow a pair.”

During a city council meeting, a member proposed creating “Safe Zones” where kids could “seek refuge from bullies.”

Hamilton said “I’m against bullying but I’m getting damn tired of it being used as a mantra for everything, and the ills of the world. Most people just have to grow a pair, and stick up for them damn selves.”

Councilwoman Virginia Gurrola turned to the mayor and replied “it’s hard to just ‘grow a pair’ when you’re a 10-year-old girl.”

Hamilton, undeterred, responded “then maybe the other 10-year-olds that think they want to stop bullying will stand up for her, instead of a safe zone and a placard and a bunch of training that goes on.”

Melissa McMurrey, who was at the meeting pushing for Safe Zones to help protect young gay students, said “my feelings were really hurt and I was essentially shocked by the end of it because it kind of felt like a little bit of a witch hunt, from my understanding, of the Safe Zone project. It’s an opportunity for the community to come together, as a whole, and say that we’re not going to take bullying in this town.”

Barry Caplain, another local gay rights activist, said “it’s just entirely inappropriate and another black eye for the city for the mayor to say something like that.”

Hamilton, who has served as mayor since 2008, cast the only vote against Safe Zones in the meeting.

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Igor Derysh is the Managing Editor of Latest. com and a syndicated columnist whose work has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald, Baltimore Sun, and Orlando Sun Sentinel, and AOL News. His work has been criticized in even more publications. Follow him on Twitter @IgorDerysh