To the Editor:
Cyberbullying under the disguise of safety.
I’ve watched a lady marginalize, ostracize and now seemingly remove another human being from the Woodstock Town Square via Facebook posts.
I reached out to the police department, but they could not interfere.
The woman had found fault with some of the man’s posts and picture taking. He had overstepped the boundaries; he apologized and then removed all of those posts. But, alas, that was not enough!
She campaigned through further posts and messages until most of the establishments this man frequented issued “no trespass” orders.
She “diagnosed” this man publicly, for all to read, as being in deep psychosis; she “analyzed” the cadence of his writings and concluded with the battle cry: He needs help! The Woodstock police interviewed this man and said that they felt no danger emanated from him and he hadn’t broken any laws.
Her posts continued, and people were eager to comment, to joke, to ridicule, to judge, all in the name of their humanity.
A lonely man now is even lonelier, further pushed out of society. That much for helping.
Being different still is a crime in the court of public opinion. Mistakes cannot be rectified through apology. And social media can turn anti-social at the drop of a diagnosis of any wannabe psychologist.
I am so very sorry I couldn’t stop this.
We are in the midst of this discussion with our kids about the use and abuse of social media – how quickly things can spread, the harm that can be done.
Any high school student who followed this campaign learned an effective lesson on how to corner, demean, dehumanize and ultimately remove someone from their sphere.
Just post and share. Done.