As a vulnerable teen, what do you do when caught in a war between your faith and your everyday life?
The New York Daily News told the very sad tale of a 16-year-old Muslim boy who was beaten by four bullies on a daily basis -- for a year! On Sunday, the boys were arrested on charges of assault and aggravated harassment, both as hate crimes.
The victim, a Staten Island teen named Kristian, said, "[They] punched me in my groin, and I fell to the floor. They started kicking me, and calling me 'You f---in' terrorist,' 'You f---in' Muslim.'"
Kristian, born here to parents from Trinidad, said the boys started the abuse by calling him gay, then graduated to beating him and blaming him for terrorist bombings. He said, "I was very scared that if I told the teachers ... they would beat me up more."
As many bullied kids do, Kristian suffered in silence in the hopes that the abuse would stop on its own. But it didn't. He was even attacked in class, and at one point was kicked so hard that he later had blood in his urine.
At long last, the four bullies -- three 14-year-olds and a 15-year-old -- were arrested. But Kristian's dad says his son's trauma has gone far beyond the physical. The talented piano player stopped playing, his grades have suffered and he's afraid to go outside alone.
So heartbreaking. In a perfect world, bullies would be charged as adults and victims of bullying would receive justice and treatment for PTSD. But then again, in a perfect world, bullying wouldn't exist.