Tuesday, March 22, 2016

On bullying and Brussels -- and the human reaction.

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I return here today (after a long time break) with a heavy heart.  We've had an incident in our community this week involving two girls and bullying.  A video was taken.  The girl (who was the target in the video) gave the video to her mom who then posted it online.   I can only assume the mother's action was to get help for her child.  While I may not agree with the method, it did start a conversation in our community about bullying.  The video ended up in a community group, and there was a lot of outrage (understandably so).  I give this background not to place blame on any party or discuss the incident specifically with you but to discuss the reaction.  There were adults in our community posting publicly about doing harm to a child.  Name calling.  Bashing parents.  Basing the children.  It was AWFUL.  Just horribly, horribly awful to read.  And I found myself reading through getting more and more disgusted and frustrated because these adults are quite literally partaking in the same behavior seen on the video and there is this overall feeling of WHY are our kids doing these things - well look no farther than the adults in our community!  How can we expect our children to behave in a responsible, civil manner when their parents, their community members, cannot do the same?

I give this example from this week because to be honest is has been weighing on me.  Today though, it feels that much worse.  I woke to read of the terrorist attacks in Brussels.   These attacks bring out so much good (see #IkWillHelpen on twitter or #Brussels on Instagram) but also so much hate.  It is so much easier to channel that anger that you feel into hate than into compassion.  It is so easy to sit behind a computer or phone and write scathing words of hate for whomever your hate is directed (which today seems to be towards one of two political figures in the US and to the organization whom deserves it).  I equate these two events together very simply because I still am left to stand astonished that we are wondering what we can do about the rise in bullying from our children.   Look into the mirror (or more aptly onto your social media accounts) to see why.  Where has our empathy gone?  Our compassion?  Our kindness?

I urge you all this week to take a moment to think about your words you use - especially online - and if that aren't something you would be proud hearing from a child's mouth then delete them.  Stop sharing news articles the media posts that are solely intent on bringing down another person.  With the entire world fighting the terror that is ISIS, what are we fighting for if not our humanity?  Change has to start somewhere, why not right here and now with you and me? 
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