Years ago, bullies were big and strong. They pushed us down the stairs, hit us in the nose, and stole our books. Today, they sit at computers or use mobile devices and have evolved into a new type of bully called a cyberbully. Hidden behind their screens at home or in their offices, they use their words to create and post hateful and harmful messages. Too many children, teens, and adults have been affected, and sadly, many have sunk into depression, or worse, some have even committed suicide. We must change and get rid of cyberbullying.
There are many in the mainstream media who talk about this topic. From journalists to business leaders to politicians, there are many in positions of power that CAN make a positive impact.
And then, there are those who wish to continue the trend. We only have to look at the most powerful leader in the world to witness actions that should not be imitated. President Donald Trump regularly posts negative comments about Hillary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, Adam Schiff, James Comey, Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, Elizabeth Warren, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer – in addition to constantly slamming CNN, The New York Times, and Washington Post.
What makes this situation ironic is that First Lady Melania Trump chose cyberbullying as her initiative. According to the Boston Globe, “Traditionally, First Ladies take up a broader cause and develop programs to bolster it. (For example, Nancy Reagan’s initiative was “Just Say No to Drugs,” and Michelle Obama promoted exercise and wellness.) Cyberbullying, as in putting a stop to people who bully others over the Internet, is Melania Trump’s issue. When announcing the initiative, she said, ‘Technology has changed our universe, but like anything that is powerful, it can have a bad side.’”
“Cyberbullying is a national problem. One study found that over half of young people in the United States have experienced cyberbullying and that 20 percent of them experience it regularly. When Trump fires off tweets that are crude personal attacks, he’s not just playing politics, he’s contributing to the problem. How do you tell teenagers not to bully each other when the President of the United States is doing it?” wrote James Pindell (Twitter: @JamesPindell) in the Boston Globe.
Teachers and administrators are having a difficult time telling students not to bully others. They’re also having difficulty punishing students for that behavior because students say “If the President of the United States does it, so can I.”
Image Credit: Twitter.