Harlem Globetrotters give anti-bullying talk to students

Globetrotters go hard in the paint against bullies

The Brooklyn Paper
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Photo gallery

Check him out: William “Bull” Bullard gets fancy with a basketball when he and fellow Globetrotter Jon “Hawk” Thomas performed tricks for Park Slope students on Tuesday.
Huddle: Pupil Akayla Mack, 10, looks up in awe at the Globetrotters as he gets to join them in a huddle.
Learning: Student Steven Rosado, 9, dishes out a trick he learned from the Globetrotters.

Turns out kids actually can actually get excited for a lecture — if tricks are involved.

A couple of Harlem Globetrotters gave an anti-bullying pep talk interjected with basketball theatrics at a Park Slope charter school on Wednesday. The lecture was a hit, if the screaming students are any gauge.

“We believe that bullying is a huge issue in our society,” said Jon “Hawk” Thomas, who has been a Globetrotter for two years. “Our main focus is making kids realize that bullying is not okay.”

Thomas and his fellow performer, William “Bill” Bullard, led hundreds of pumped-up pupils at the Hellenic Classical Charter School — who greeted them as if they were kings — through the ABCs of bullying, including A for action, B for bravery, and C for compassion. The twosome urged the kids to be nice to their fellow students and tell their teachers if their friends are ever bullied.

“Make sure you alert someone to the situation that is going on,” Bullard said. “That right there is how you take action.”

Bullard and Thomas also spun basketballs on their fingers and looped them through their long legs, eliciting “oohs” and “ahhs” from the young audience.

One young girl said she loved the act and even learned how to stand up to rascals.

“It gave me an opportunity to learn about bullying so I know what to do next time,” said fourth grader Mikayla Campbell.

Reach reporter Megan Riesz at or by calling (718) 260-4505. Follow her on Twitter @meganriesz.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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