We are not invincible. The advent of technology has given the millennial generation (and everybody, for that matter) the feeling that they can do almost anything they want without retribution. We hide behind fake Internet personas or only showcase the best parts of our lives to make others think that we are superior. But we are not invincible.
There’s a lot going on in this world right now and the Internet brings out the good, the bad, and the ugly surrounding every single issue plaguing the world. The comments section of any Internet platform is becoming more congested with atrocious hateful language. Body shamers lurk on every Instagram post that made someone feel hot, fierce, and beautiful. Celebrities are calling out their Twitter haters more frequently. People are getting blocked on Twitter for hate speech. One hundred years from now, students will learn about the Twitter feuds that our current presidential candidates engaged in on the campaign trail. The Internet has infiltrated our lives in unprecedented ways.
But behind every Internet troll is just an insecure person who lets the Internet be their shield. I dedicated an entire five months in high school to creating a social justice project on cyberbullying and I still don’t understand the mentality of hiding behind a computer screen to make another person feel bad about themselves. The Internet makes people feel invincible. But I can assure you, no one is.
To every Internet troll out there, I am sorry for whatever has scarred you in your past, but you should be seeking help instead of being an a-hole hiding behind an avatar on the world wide web. I’m sorry that you feel so small when you wake up every day that you feel the need to tear other confident and beautiful people down to your level. I’m sorry that you can’t embrace your vulnerability in positive ways, but instead you channel that vulnerability to attack another’s.
To every person who has ever been a victim of Internet hatred or cyberbullying, I am sorry that trolls took advantage of some of your most confident and inspiring moments. But you know what? We have the power to rise above and show them that confidence, empowerment, love, and support will always trump hate.
We are not invincible, and its time that we embrace that. So every time you see someone being a troll on the Internet, report them for targeted abuse and block them. It may seem like a small, almost insignificant task, but you are bringing their negativity to the attention of those in charge, and the smallest things can help shut down that negative energy in the world. Have courage, be kind, and keep doing you.