This past week, a Buffalo Teen committed suicide after being cyber-bullied about being gay. This makes nearly half a dozen teens who have committed suicide since 2011 begun and it all began with Facebook drama, with taunts and teasing, with the name-calling and the cruelty.
Everyone screams justice when something like this happens but no one does anything because it's not their friend, cousin, brother, sister, or child and as long as it doesn't interfere with their lives, it's someone else's problem.
It is our problem -- it's our fault because we don't step up and say "why are you doing this?" "What gives you the right to say these terrible things to a person, who is struggling just to survive in a world that moves a thousand miles an hour?" And just when that person thinks they've got some sort of control, someone comes along and just pops that bubble.
We've become a generation of negative jerks. We continue to torment and tease like it's a game. When we don't realize every action has a consequence and when we push someone to their edge and it causes them to commit suicide, it's gone too far. The fact that it's teenagers makes it worse.
So why do people do it? Why do we create Facebook drama unnecessarily? What's the actual point? It never solves anything -- it only makes someone else feel worse while we feel better about our own problems.
I honestly believed by the time 2011 rolled around we'd have moved past all that stuff, that we'd get to a certain point and just learn to let people live their own lives and not give a damn what other people think, but it's the exact opposite. We jump on every thing and it's time to stop. We are about to raise a new generation and the time has come for a change because they won't know what's like to grow up to be individuals, that if they don't conform to some sort of group mentality -- the jocks, the cheerleaders etc. -- they'll be considered some sort of social outcast.
Facebook is supposed to make a person feel good, to make a connection with new and old friends, to find a common ground and not verbally abuse each other. We all have the right to be happy and no one should be able to take it away.
Malcolm X said,"You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom." If he were alive today, he'd choke on his own words because no one has peace, especially in the world of the social network.
October is the beginning of National Anti-Cyber Bullying month and I think it's time we all make a promise that no matter what someone says to us, through social networking or in real life we won't give in. It's time to put an end to it before it claims another life.
It was bad enough in the 90's before the world could see it posted on a wall -- when it was considered a group activity, gathered around some poor kid with wild hair and glasses, playing keep-away with his backpack and locking him a locker -- but now we've got to abuse each other through a router.
The time is now. We cannot condone this behavior any longer and we most certainly cannot pass this behavior onto our kids.
Tell me ... will you partake in this movement or will you just allow social networkers to continue to run wild? How do you plan on take a stance on this movement?