I also blog for Chicago Moms Blog. Our sister site, New York Moms Blog had a special guest recently — Katie Couric! You can check out what she has to say about the blogging atmosphere and cyberbullying right here.
Personally, I don’t like cyberbullying for obvious reasons. No one likes a bully! However, I posted the following comment to Couric’s post: Back when I was a high school teacher, I began the first day of class discussing the power of language. I asked them if the old adage, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me” is really true. Actually, it is the opposite. I broke my arm when I was a child and I can’t remember that pain. However, some people called me “big nose” in junior high and I still remember how that hurt. Words are VERY powerful. We need to preserve our rights to use them freely. However, just because adults have the right to free speech does not mean minors should. Parents and teachers have a duty to help children understand the power of language before these children earn the right to use it freely. I’m not saying that the answer is to censor or gag these children, I’m just saying that children have a lot to learn before they are able to use words wisely. As far as all this hateful stuff going on at college campuses, I hope that, by now, these kids have been around long enough to recognize bullsh*t when they see it. We need to give them more credit. True, anyone can say anything online these days. But it is that very fact that will negate most of the hatred and lies that are being posted. In this brave “new” world of the internet, we all must learn how to determine fact from fiction.