Can everybody win? This is a question which was presented by my Conflict Resolution professor in seminary back in 1999. And this question has lingered with me ever since. As a result, it is one of the questions I have chosen to tackle in my Speedsuit Powers Trilogy. We live in a society structured on the premise that there must be winners and losers, the strong and the weak, the smart and the... not so smart. Not only is this dichotomy maintained, it is also encouraged in most facets of life (sports, politics, policing, etc...). Somehow the notion persist which states: "my greatness or feeling of self-worth" means I must do what I can to "push you down and demean you."
Isn't this the heart of bullying? In order for one person to feel good about him or herself, he or she finds someone else to break down. We see this play out in our schools every day, where bullies make life miserable for the bullied and the bystanders often watch in fearful silence. But if you go beneath the surface of this scenario of "winners and losers" you will discover that everybody loses. The bullied student loses. The bully loses. The bystanders lose. Each group loses a piece of themselves - of their humanity.
Can everybody win? Is there a way where the bullied, the bully and the bystander can win? I believe there is, and it begins with each group being able to truly "see" themselves in the other. And as you read through the Speedsuit Powers Trilogy, you will see this reality demonstrated in a practical way. Most stories that deal with bullying only focus on the victim. Speedsuit Powers presents a story that peels back the layers on both the victim and the aggressor and paints a picture where both can learn to get along.
So, how does SPT address bullying within the context of the broad story it presents? Book 1 deals with physical and mental school bullying at the high school level. Book 2 branches into high school and college while introducing the social media aspects of bullying (and the dire consequences), as well as the concept of institutional bullying (where systems of governance actually favor the bully and further victimizes the bullied). Book 3 continues the theme of bullying at the institutional and national level.
While my Speedsuit Powers Trilogy seeks to tell a great story while addressing school bullying (and a host of other themes), at its core is the question: Can everybody win? It is my hope, as you read this story, you will see that we each can foster our own greatness while helping to develop the greatness which exists inside of those around us - whether they be friends or enemies. Can everybody win? Yes... We can.