Made of Shade: Open Letter To Bullies
Right now a rope is tied around the neck of a child. He’s tired. Tired of being the object of your scorn. Deep shades of red and black are buried in the deeper parts of his self-esteem. You see, this kid is fearful to step inside the door of your school because you are a bully.
Bullying is repeated aggressive behavior that can be physical or verbal.
When you mocked his style of dress, he went home and told his mom he would rather not eat for the evening and went to bed with fierce hunger pains. When you poked fun at her hair, you sent her on a path where she can never fully love herself without your voice in the back of her mind each time she brushes her natural hair.
When you knocked his books to the ground, he started to feel horrible for wanting to excel in his studies; he now hides his ambitions of becoming a scholar. When you mocked his accent, he became ashamed of his heritage. He lost pride in telling anyone that he was not born in the United States. When you spread rumors about her online, she developed an ulcer so bad, she had to have an operation to remove itr. The kid you called “slow” had dreams of shooting you.
Did you notice the lines on her wrist? Every day after you teased her for the God-given face she was born with, she went home, glanced in the mirror and asked god why did He create such an “ugly” face. When you made fun of his lisp and feminine hand gestures, he stopped speaking in class.
Did you know when you made fun of the way she reads, she stopped wanting to read out loud. Each time she picks up a book, she wonders if she’s smart enough to complete the entire book. After you threatened to pounce your fist on him, he pretended to be ill several days of the week, so he can remain home in a safe place without your brutal rage moving him into places of submission in front of shared peers. He eventually dropped out of school because the teasing was too unbearable. Did you even know before the bullying started, he desired to become your friend?
I pray for you. I know you are riddled with pain. I don’t think you understand how much damage you cause to others with your careless actions. You must be a hurt individual to hurt others so boldly. Hurt people hurt other people. Picking on others is a false way you build your self-esteem.
Before you bully, think of Jose Morales, a 12-year-old student who hanged himself after bullies at school teased him for his size and the death of his father or think about Jared High who was badly beaten by an older bully. This bully even went so far as to obtain Jared’s phone number and harassed him at home.
Jared ended his life. Before you bully, think of Devin Brown who was beaten and had peanut butter pies smeared over his clothes, after being called a ‘snitch’, he hung himself. Maybe think about the 15-year old sophomore in the Bronx who skipped two months of school after being tormented by a bully, one of her detractors wrote, “I’m forever gonna jack BALD HEADED B——!” Before you bully, think of Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover, an 11-year-old who was found hanging by an extension cord, his actions was repeatedly referred to as being, “so gay.”
Better yet, think of Angel Green who was found hanging from a tree, her suicide note addressed to her bullies read, “Have you ever thought about what you said to me? huh… maybe not! Because you killed me everyday.”
Words can build or tear down the spirit of a human being. Hurtful words have the power to injure so severe that one can commit suicide. When you indirectly drive someone to the point of suicide, you become a murderer. Build someone up today. You have no right to physically or verbally assault another human being. Cowards promote fear. How many more bodies of innocent children have to be buried before the psychological murder stops? When you bully, you destroy the person that you’ve so unjustly targeted. How can you rest easy at night knowing you’ve taunted someone you perceive as weak?
When the bullied person commits suicide, you are helping to supply the rope around the neck of the one that ends his/her life. Perhaps, you were once bullied. Forgive the person that might have bullied you. If you don’t know how to stop the psychological terrorism, seek the help of a school counselor, teacher, principal or a trusted adult. Don’t pick on folks because they look, dress or speak differently. I plead with you to make a pledge to stop bullying. Make a pledge to also discourage others from bullying. Make a promise to become bully free. It’s never too late to change.
Follow Quassan on Twitter at @Quassan.