The written word is a powerful thing. It can transport a person to an imaginary land, change a person’s perspective, or provide important information about the world around us. It can also be hurtful. A rumor or insult through a text, Facebook wall post, or a Tweet can be a destructive weapon that wounds deeply. A few words can crush a person’s self-esteem ruin a friendship or push someone to violence.
With technology being what it is today, bullying isn’t what it used to be. Getting in a fight or stuffing somebody in garbage and stealing their lunch money is an obvious sign of bullying and can be stopped immediately. Cyber bullying is a bit more complicated because it’s hard to identify and does not usually cause suspicion until it’s too late.
An example of cyber bullying is the story of Jamey Rodemeyer a 14-year-old gay student from Buffalo NY. Cyber bullies made comments that said “JAMIE IS STUPID, GAY, FAT ANND [sic] UGLY. HE MUST DIE!” and “I wouldn’t care if you died. No one would. So just do it It would make everyone WAY more happier!” Jamey ended up committing suicide after posting an online farewell.
A lot of trash-talk on Twitter and Facebook is a way to get attention that a person does not get in real life but it is at someone else’s expense. Tweeting or posting insults about someone because you don’t like that person only degrades your own reputation. The people who are your friends or follow you see it and know that the bully is really insecure if they have to say something like that about someone on an internet website and not to their face. Cyber bullying is a coward’s way out of dealing with an issue or problem they have with someone else.
Cyber bullying is just another way to single out and harass other people, and although it may seem like not that big of a deal, it can be a powerful blow to the victims both mentally and emotionally. It can change their life and the way they view themselves. Although it may seem like you may never be bullying someone through technology, be careful what you say and what you post, you never know the impact it can have or the life it could change.
By Makala Ferguson