Dec 11, 2018
Tribune News Service

Don’t be a bystander — take action

Hundreds of videos have spread around the internet of people being taken advantage of and disrespected. Meanwhile, crowds of bystanders watched or recorded the actions online.

In the society we live in, it appears it is more important to get something provocative on camera than addressing what’s actually happening to someone.

By doing this, we equate one’s value to what will be popular  online. Where did our values go in treating one another as human beings who look out for one each other?

It seems that we have stopped caring about how people are treated in our own grocery stores, at parties, in the streets, on our very own front lawns and neighborhoods.

We’ve become detached from what it means to watch out for our fellow citizens. Keeping our distance and turning our backs to people in need of help, along with pointing our cell phone cameras at the action, has become the first and immediate reaction.

This isn’t helping our society improve.

We need people to step forward and make connections to be the kind of individuals who make a difference in someone else’s life.

If you see someone being harassed, speak up and let your thoughts be known. If you see someone being taken advantage of, be the person who stops something horrible from happening.

It only takes one person for everyone else to step forward. The biggest step is just paying attention to that opportunity and taking hold of what’s in front of your eyes, not our phones.

We don’t have to be amazing, influential people to do the right thing and save someone from a potentially dangerous situation.

We need to simply listen to the voices of people around us calling for help and reach our hands out towards them.

From all of the content spreading around on the internet, we see both the saviors and the harassers who fill our roles in society.

From race to social status to sex, there never seems to be an end to people being disrespected. Consent is lost in the abyss of how everyone is becoming desensitized to the way we should treat other.

Be the people we see speaking up for someone being picked on or taken advantage of because they’re weaker than another. Put your devices down and look with your eyes at what’s happening in front of you.

We’ve advanced too much in our society to keep ignoring the fact that people in our day and age are still being shamed for whom they are and victimized, while bystanders ignore them or keep walking on by. Be the change. Make a difference.

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