Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney admitted Thursday that he was a bully in high school, and he apologized after an incident from 1965 was publicized in The Washington Post.
"I did some dumb things and if anybody was hurt by that or offended ... obviously, I apologize," Romney said in a radio interview that was hastily set up in a damage-control effort by his campaign.
The Post story recounted an incident from Romney's posh boarding school in suburban Detroit in which he pinned down a classmate named John Lauber and cut off his bleached-blonde hair. Lauber, who has since died, was gay, but Romney claims he didn't know that in 1965.
"I participated in a lot of hijinks and pranks during high school and some may have gone too far. And for that I apologize," Romney said Thursday in the Fox News radio interview.
The revelation comes on the heels of the critically acclaimed documentary "Bully," which claims 13 million schoolchildren in the United States are bullied every year.
It also comes just weeks after a Dallas-area high school assistant principal revealed in a short video that he had contemplated suicide when he was 17, because he had been bullied for most of his life.
Richardson High School Assistant Principal Michael Westfall kept the secret for 20 years, even from his own mother.
"I can remember being up one, one night and just thinking: Y'know, maybe this is it. It's not going to get any better. This isn't going away," he told The Dallas Morning News.
"So I can remember I had the gun. In my hand. In my room. My mom didn't know. My dad didn't know -- or care. But I can remember thinking there's just, it'll all go away. And if I had done that, y'know, I would have missed out on the best years of my life."