Pushed too far

It happens everywhere. School, home, work, the Web. I’m talking about bullying.

People bully for different reasons. They may be imitating what they’ve seen other bullies do. They may have grown up in a household of bullies and just not know any other way to act. They may be trying to cover their own insecurities. They may just be assholes. The reasons don’t matter. All that matters is that it needs to stop.

What is the point of bullying? Does it make the bully feel cool? Does it make them feel superior? I mean, why do it? Yeah, I listed reasons above, but those aren’t real reasons. More excuses. Y’know, “I was bullied so I’m just fighting back.” “That’s what my dad does.” “They deserve it for being fat/ugly/stupid/insert lame excuse here.”

All of those excuses mean precisely squat to me. There’s no valid reason for bullying. None. All it does is hurt the targets of bullying and can potentially be harmful. Some victims of bullying resort to self-harm, some even get pushed to the point of attempting (or succeeding at) suicide. It’s extremely emotionally devastating.

So why do it? Are these bullies just racist or sexist or homophobic, or maybe just plain phobic of anything that doesn’t fit their ideal of what a person should look like or who a person should be? You hear that, bullies? Maybe you’re just scared. Pretend predators who are really just frightened little rabbits, nibbling at others’ feelings to try to feel powerful and fierce.

I don’t care what kind of power you may feel when you bully someone. I don’t care if you’re doing it due to some deep-set insecurities. If you find yourself pushing someone–physically, verbally, or emotionally–quit it. Just stop. Just fucking stop.

In short, to quote the immortal words of Wil Wheaton: “Don’t be a dick.”