A man’s “bully” sign is sparking some online chatter this week, after a 62-year-old man, sitting with his cap pulled low and with sunglasses on, was forced to hold a cardboard sign admitting to his hounding and maltreatment of others in his small Ohio community.
According to a report from The Associated Press on April 13, Edmond Aviv was mandated by a judge to hold his sign for five hours on Sunday at a busy intersection. Aviv’s sign read:
I AM A BULLY! I pick on children that are disabled, and I am intolerant of those that are different from myself. My actions do not reflect an appreciation for the diverse South Euclid community that I live in.
Aviv is not your typical bully; he’s not a high schooler with a self-entitled attitude over others, and he’s not a social media user cyberbullying those that don’t fit into societal perception. But make no mistake – Aviv is a bully in the worst way. He’s lived more than half his life as a dogmatic racist, browbeating those who were not cast in the same narrow-minded mold that Aviv was.
His handwritten sign and public shaming, ordered by Municipal Court Judge Gayle Williams-Byers, was only part punishment for Aviv’s 15-year harassment of his neighbors, the Prugh family, who have two adoptive African American children with multiple disabilities.
Writes CBS News:
Prugh has two adult adopted children with developmental disabilities, cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Her husband has dementia, and her son is paralyzed. Prugh said in a letter to the court that Aviv had called her an ethnic slur while she was holding her adopted black children, spit on her several times, regularly threw dog feces on her son's car windshield, and once smeared feces on a wheelchair ramp.
Media outlets sent reporters to Aviv on the corner of Trebisky Road and Monticello Boulevard Sunday to get his opinion and comment. But Aviv sat silently and refused to speak; evidently he was letting his sign speak on behalf of his petulance. Horn honkers drove by, passersby spoke to reporters and photographed Aviv; he simply sat in his chair with his propped up sign.
Aviv, who pleaded no contest to a fourth-degree misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct, must also serve 15 days in jail, perform 100 hours of service to his community and attend anger management classes.
Consider some of Aviv’s other disgraceful offenses: Spitting on Prugh as she gardened, dumping fabric softener all over her lawn, calling her a “monkey mamma,” and rigging a fan to blow kerosene fumes at the Prugh’s house.
Aviv, an electrician by trade, has three previous convictions on his record for harassing his other neighbors. In court, Aviv presented a letter of apology to Prugh:
"I want to express my sincere apology for acting irrationally towards your house and the safety of your children," Aviv wrote. "I understand my actions could have caused harm but at that time I was not really thinking about it."
But the Ohio man’s words were short-lived. Incredibly, when Aviv finally did speak to reporters, he put the attention right back on himself.
Fox News is reporting that Aviv thinks the punishment was unfair and that the judge who sentenced him ruined his life.
“The judge destroyed me,” Aviv said. “This isn't fair at all.”
What are your thoughts on Aviv’s punishment? Does a shaming sentence of ignominy work with an adult? Did the judgment fit the crime? Sound off below.