I have watched so many news reports on the effects of bullying. The children that die because they can't take it anymore. The peers that encourage their deaths and demise. I watch the youtube videos of the souls that are lost. The cruel comments for these users to just take their own lives and to stop annoying everyone.
These are children.
And the only thing that is being done is for everyone to look on in shock and horror. Laws are put into place to protect those who cannot protect themselves. Silence is a code of conduct. Hate and cruelty are a rite of passage.
People die everyday, they say. But she shouldn't have died. He didn't have to die. They could be standing right there, in front of you. Lives are taken away because human empathy is taken out of the equation.
Love is unconditional. Hatred is learned.
We, as parents, as peers, as teachers, need to understand that we are letting others know that it is okay for this to happen. That they deserved what they got. That nothing will be done if this continues. That they will be punished if they fight back.
Then one day, they snap. The fear of Columbine far in the past is re-visited. A parent comes home to their dead child.
News reporters waiting outside to interview the schools, parents, teachers, and students. Investigations, trials, convictions and scapegoating, and new laws.
But in the end, they are all gone. Forever. Because no one stood up. No one ever does in these situations.
Remember: It only takes one person to stand up. It only takes one person to save a life. Be that person.