Globetrotter brings anti-bullying message to Buchanan Park school
By Mark Newman, News Staff
It was one of the largest attended assemblies at Buchanan Park Elementary School in some time.
Students, teachers and parents were on hand to hear the high-energy, anti-bullying message from Firefly Fisher, a 27-year-old member of the world famous Harlem Globetrotters basketball team who will be at Copps Coliseum on Sunday.
“I think it touches everybody whether they’re bullied or not,” said Fisher, whose real first name is Tay.
He said the team gave him the nickname Firefly “because I light it up real quick.”
The Kingston, New York native began playing basketball in his father’s driveway that was made of rocks so he learned to become an expert ball handler and later attended Siena College.
Fisher noted he was rarely picked on as a youth but witnessed other players being bullied on some of the basketball teams he had played with while growing up.
His interactive presentation that mixed basketball tricks with his anti-bullying message kept most of the children fixated for about 45 minutes.
Fisher told the children that to deal with bullying they had to learn the ABC system.
A, he said, stands for action.
“You must take action,” Fisher said. “You must tell someone (if you see bullying).”
People children can tell if they are bullied or see bullying include parents, teachers and the school principal.
Fisher said B stands for bravery, meaning children must not be afraid to say something if they see someone being bullied.
“You must say that’s not right, that’s not nice,” Fisher said.
“C stands for compassion,” Fisher said, adding people who care about other people and want to help them are compassionate.
“If you’ve got compassion, you should not allow bullying to happen,” he said. “You should not be a bully.”
During his presentation Fisher had children come up and physically spell out A, B and C and those youngsters were each taught a basketball trick that they got to perform in front of the assembly.
Fisher said it’s important that athletes and public figures use their celebrity to tell children that bullying is not acceptable.
“They’re our future,” he said.
The Harlem Globetrotters are internationally known for their combination of amazing basketball skills and comedic antics,
Since joining the team, Fisher said he has visited nearly 53 countries and the 88 year-old Globetrotter franchise remains as popular as ever.
“And they’ll go on for another 88 with or without me,” he said.