Posted on February 6, 2019
by Steve Janowick
The ubiquitous anti-bullying messages that have been tirelessly rammed down our throats for the last decade or so have seemingly done their jobs. And God bless the kids who no longer have to endure insecure punks stealing their lunches or beating them up at recess because of said messages working. In that regard, I applaud anything that stops assholes from being assholes.
But don’t think for a second that the act of ridiculing, demeaning and hurting vulnerable kids isn’t still happening daily in schools across America.
The good, old-fashioned wedgie or hall-locker stuffing or punch in the balls…they’ve all fallen out of favor. Too many radars up. Too many watchful eyes. But the bully is resourceful. He adapts. He even morphs. And he’s replaced his conventional, tried and true, intimidation tactics with some much more devious, sinister, and potentially damaging, methods.
The cyber-bully doesn’t need to be in your presence to hurt you. As a matter of fact, he prefers it that way, because this new breed of asshole, the keyboard killer, isn’t the fisticuff prankster that his traditional counterpart was. This new incarnation is usually a wet noodle who couldn’t fight his way out of a paper bag. From behind his screen, he can say anything without fear of getting his lights punched out.
He’s a contrarian who disagrees just to disagree and get a rise. He picks fights in the all the comment sections. He lives to tweet disparaging and contentious jabs at his enemies. He posts damaging or embarrassing photos and videos. He breaks up relationships and ends careers.
In a curious twist of irony, it’s kind of a role reversal. The hunted is now the hunter. The victim is now the perpetrator. It’s truly a case of revenge of the nerds. The script has been flipped. The natural order has been upset. The once timid, insecure stick-in-the-mud is now the braggart, ruffian hector. From behind the two dimensions of a five-inch screen, he’s releasing all that pent-up rage from years of unwarranted shoves and noogies and is now unleashing his vengeance with calculated precision and awe.
Yea, I’m attempting a bit of lightheartedness. But in all seriousness-it’s no joke. A lot of kids, and adults too, have suffered greatly from the key stroke grudges of the cyber-bully. But as is the solution to any attempts at malice-just ignore them and you kill their juice. Diminish their value. If the attacker no longer gets the satisfaction of seeing his victim upset and retaliatory, and feels he’s lost his power over said victim-he’ll stop.
Or if that doesn’t work, you can always track him down and give him a wedgie from hell…
And restore the natural balance.
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