Good gosh, I didn't want to get all depressing for today's post, but I saw a video Sunday night and I couldn't stop thinking about this issue. Although this does not relate directly to writing, it is a huge, HUGE part of the current YA trend going on; probably one of the central themes in so many YA books. Thus, it is necessary that we understand it.
Bullying was never a problem for me in high school, but I saw so many other people getting bullied.
People think that bullying is just beating someone up, and thus, writers write this thinking this way. Bullying is not just the beating people up. Bullying is everything that comes before.
No matter how many times people vow they will never bully, post comments on videos and Facebook saying, "Bullying is so horrible," they will end up, two seconds later, attacking Mr.Snugglepuff3 on Youtube -- strangers they never met and have never seen.
Bullies and abusers do not think what they do is bullying; they do not recognize it for what it truly is, and so, everyone bullies.
And then, so many teenagers kill themselves, and the only solution we can think of is, "I told them to take The Catcher in the Rye off their shelves, and now look what happened." Do I believe books have a part to play in influencing the teenager's mind? Yes. Definitely. Sometimes in a negative fashion? Yes.
But these books only magnify the feeling anyone has; the feelings must be inside to begin with. Good gosh, we just don't realize nor understand just how our actions can affect someone on the other side of the screen.
Out of sight, out of mind.
People are starting to realize bullying is not cool, or whatever. But the worst part is seeing one person who proclaims the horrible aspects of bullying, who devotes an epitaph online to commemorate a deceased person... and two seconds later, in 'real' life, laugh and abuse-comment at strangers.
We all need to be more responsible for our own actions. No matter who is on the recieving side, there is no justifying any action which leads to someone committing suicide. One of the worst things is seeing people 'justifying' their actions, AFTER the suicide, by using their prejudiced views of the victim.
Just think, what if next time you witness something, it's all a part of this show?
And even if it isn't, standing up for someone in a less fortunate place than you is a huge deal. As I write all this, it's partially for me; I've only spoken up when I know I won't come in harm. I want to be able to stand up when doing so would lead to my harm, but I'm not sure if I would be able to. I would be too scared.
I'm sorry for going all depressing on you guys. I hope you can forgive me :( We all just need take a little more care of our own actions.
"No one errs or does wrong willingly or knowingly." -- Socrates (Also the quote that preceeds my WIP :) )
If you do write about bullying, truly understand it, and, expose it for all it is.
Thanks for listening to me, and I'll see you Friday :)