A few days ago, one of the students in our school brought an air soft gun to school and shot some of his classmates. The assumptions from the staff was that he was acting out in response to repeated teasing about his weight. If you aren't familiar with air soft guns, they work like a BB gun, except the pellets are plastic and there's less pressure involved. They can't really do any harm unless you get someone in the eye. Still, when Hyun-beom told me about the incident, my first reaction was utter horror, having grown up in a place where the rule is no tolerance.
I know I'm making assumptions here, and feel free to correct me in the comments if you think I'm wrong, but this kid would have been out of school in a heartbeat in America. He would have been suspended with mandatory psychiatric evaluation at the least, and expelled at the worst. In Korea, the approach was a little different.
The entire class sat down and wrote letters to each other about the incident. By the end of the day, everyone was friends again.
I'm not saying this method is perfect either. In fact, I'm not necessarily saying one way is better than another. Guns shouldn't be tolerated, but at the same time--people should be. Certainly, some kind of punishment might be called for in a situation like this, but the matter was resolved anyway. The student understood what he did wrong and his classmates realized that teasing him about his weight probably led (in part) to the action.
I guess what really intrigues me about the situation is that in a country where you can buy any number of weapons easily and quickly, kids get kicked out of school for having them. But in a country where firearms are absolutely impossible to procure, a slap on the wrist is all that's necessary.