Rockfreak; whatever "they" might want to do about it what Tommy faced was, is and probably always will occur both inside and outside school. Tommy survived - weekly we hear stories about where school bullies force their victims into suicide and worse. It exists and in one form or another will continue. I give you examples from my own family.
1 My wife has Italian blood as has my grand-daughter so her complexion made her the but of nigger tpye bullying in school even though she is lighter than an ideal tanning salon outcome.
2 My grandson is dyslexic which led to his primary school headmaster declaiming "he will never do anything so I refuse to waste resources on him". At his next school they also did nothing for him but simply demanded that he teach backward pupils to his own detriment.
3 I have the same problem but to a lesser degree but what did CH do for me? D**n all.
I have come across psychiatrists (thank goodness I had learned enough to ensure that none of them tried to "heal" me) and I got sent to a professional course in communication run by some off the wall Theosophists who really did my head in and then came to London to try (unsuccessfully) to follow up in their actions; that took me years to recover from. Keep me a league away from Theosophists.
Duffell's hypothesis is that while boarding school (at least when started young) may teach youngsters to survive and compete and grow up quickly, it can have a negative effect in later life in the suppression of the emotional and empathetic qualities. and will, in one way or another, will continue
Makes a lot of sense BUT the big question is whether those changes allowed the subject / victim / whatever to live a more happy and satisfactory lifestyle than those who did not go through the ordeal.
I have not read his book so take my comments from that stance.
At an early age - nine and upwards- we learned to sway with the wind and live through what the bigger older bar stewards put upon us. At the end of the sausage machine we were spewed out with an education of sorts and no guidance as to how the outside world lives and no guidance as to what to do in the future - the idea of jobs, of money, of budgeting, dealing with the 48% of humanity who are female was never even mentioned. There is an organisation which has some parallels - the military. They are brought in, forced through a similar sausage machine and spewed out, often with as few useful skills and often with no guidance or support for life outside; how often do we hear about them going off the rails - PTSD etc which we also went through? The only difference is the age at whoich we learned to handle it which allowed us to survive. (I acknowledge that there is a record of one CH boy killing himself - compare that with the military)
Outside we are overburdened with those who reckon that because we CAN cope that we are "affected'" but is it a good affection or should we simply slump into the "grab every state benefit and screw the rest and those idiots prepared to try to do better for themselves" attitude we see all too often? Living (part time) abroad I come across the "can do" attitude and the "can't be bothered" attitudes far more openly than in the UK - guess which attitude I apppreciate though of course I am a Duffell "victim".
Life is short. Smile while you still have teeth.