Last week, this story hit the news. Essentially, a photo of a former Green Bay Packers cheerleader was posted to a Chicago Bears fan page on Facebook in order to mock both her and the team. While there were some people who stood up to defend Kaitlyn, the cheerleader, the majority of the comments were rude and crude and focused mainly on calling her ugly and fat.
One thing that I found truly amazing was that while we are used to anonymous hatred on the internet (side note: why is this something we have had to get used to?), because this was on Facebook, may people were posting with their real names. We are getting more and more brazen with what we say from behind the safety of our computer screens.
Kaitlyn responded with a video
As she says in her interview, the point she was trying to make was that she is lucky enough to have family and friends to support her and keep this sort of activity from causing any serious emotional damage. But what about all of the young people out there who may be more sensitive to this kind of bullying? What about the adults who don’t have this kind of support system.
You see it all too often at varying levels. While outright mocking of photos isn’t something I regularly come across in my internet browsing, I do see a lot of hatred towards people or groups of people. I don’t understand it. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not looking at the world through rose colored glasses. I understand that the world isn’t a perfect place. But I think we would all do well and take a step back to think about what we say (or type!) before we say it. Is that really something I would want to have said back to me? To my friends or family? If we all just think before we speak, we might help make the world just a tiny bit kinder.
(P.S. Did you take the survey yet?