ANTHRAX members Frank Bello (bass), Charlie Benante (drums) and Joey Belladonna (vocals) taped a four-minute public service announcement (PSA) for the Musicians Opposed To Bullying(M.O.B.) web site addressing the ever-growing problem of bullying, and especially cyber-bullying — the use of technology such as the Internet and phone texting to harass or humiliate others. Check it out below.
Bello: “I was bullied when I was young, living in upstate in New York. I was literally beat up every day I went to school. I was beat up by this tall dude. He was a bigger dude, he was muscular. He would beat me up and keep me under the car every day I went to school. I think [bullying] is for the weak. People that are insecure, people that don’t have good home lives and are taking it out on other people. I think it’s wrong. I think it’s wrong and it’s gotta stop.”
Benante: “The reason why bullying has gotten really out of hand now is because of Facebooks and everything like that. You can post something about someone and it can reach hundreds of thousands of people. I just don’t think the kids that are being bullied — and this is just me saying it — I don’t think you should take it [so] hard [sa to] wanna end your life because of it. This is just a moment in your life. You have so much more of your life. So if someone is bullying you you and no one is listening to you about the bullying, go somewhere else, go to a higher [authority figure].”
Bello: “The guys that are bullying you, the people that are bullying you — girls, guys, whoever it may be — they’re feeling so badly about themselves, they have to take it on somebody else; that’s how they get it out. You have to understand that and be smarter and be somebody above them. ‘Cause these people are feeling at a low point in their life and that’s how it comes out of them. I’m not talking about forgiveness. You have to take yourself and rise above it. ‘Cause this will pass. You have to understand that. I made it pass and you can make it pass also.”
Benante: “Suicide is not the answer for that. I really think that taking it to a higher level, changing schools is more important than you checking out of life. For all of us, there was always an escape — music was an escape, art was an escape.”
Bello: “And don’t be afraid to tell… Whether you have a good relationship with your parents or you don’t, you have a guidance counselor in school, you have a principal. I was close to my principal in school. When I was getting bullied, I talked to him, and he acted as a confidant. And he told me what to do; it was very secretive. You can do it all in secret. Don’t feel like there is no way out; there is a way out. And it’s not suicide. It’s absolutely not suicide. Get rid of these lowlives in your life, man. I’m telling you. There’s a long life ahead of you.”