Target: User european_douchebag on Reddit website
Goal: To commend online bully for publicly apologizing for insensitive remarks he posted on online community reddit.com
Online bullying, or cyberbullying as it is more commonly known, is internet bullying that wreaks havoc on its victims. One such cyberbully with the username european_douchebag secretly took a picture of Sikh woman Balpreet Kaur and then posted it online with an accompanying degrading remark about her appearance. In a shocking turn of events, he has publicly posted an online apology to her and to her Sikh faith.
Cyberbullying can appear in many forms, via text messages, websites, instant messaging, emails, etc. One’s indecent exposure picture at an office party or an embarrassing school picture day photo can be uploaded and downloaded in a matter of seconds, plastered all over social networking sites for millions of eyes to see. Unlike traditional face to face bullying in the days of old, online bullies can now hide behind anonymous and fake identities or usernames, making it extremely difficult to stop or regulate.
Ms. Balpreet Kaur had no idea that a perfect stranger took a photo of her while she was waiting in line at Ohio State’s University Library. He posted it online on reddit.com with a caption meant to insult and degrade her. A Sikh woman that adheres to the tenets of her faith, she wears a large black turban covering her head out in public. Her facial hair, which is due to a hormonal issue that she had as a teenager, is not cut or touched because Sikhs are forbidden from altering their appearance. Seeing her picture posted without her permission, people began to rudely comment, mocking her and questioning her appearance.
Balpreet turned it all around by posting a response in which she explained her faith and what she believed in as a Sikh follower. Her cyberbully european_douchebag completely revisited his position and publicly apologized to her for his insensitive remarks, which mocked her and the Sikh religion. He then went on to commend her for her faith and to let her know that he had researched the Sikh religion and found it very interesting.
All too often, cyberbullies get away with their attacks, cloaked in anonymity. The victim is usually humiliated and scarred, with some even resorting to self-mutilation or suicide. In this case the bully decided to change for the better and should be applauded. Please sign the petition below thanking this ex-cyberbully for standing up and publicly apologizing to his victim and the online community for his cruel and insensitive remarks.
Dear Reddit user european_douchebag,
Nowadays people post pictures of total strangers all the time online without even a thought as to that person’s feelings or the consequences of their actions. When you posted the picture of Balpreet Kaur, you meant to insult, offend and degrade her. But later, you felt bad about your actions and apologized for them publicly. You are to be commended for your courage and humility in acknowledging your error and for changing your ways.
It takes a big person to admit when they are wrong and to do it on such a public forum. Instead of running and hiding, you faced your actions and decided to build a bridge between you and Ms. Balpreet Kaur and the entire reddit online community. Thank you for taking the time to do this, even going so far as to research the Sikh religion to get a better understanding of the person behind your attack.
When we see and read of a cyberbullying attack, we want to reach out to the victim and help make it better. In this case, you were the one reaching out to the victim and making it better. Thank you for taking the high road and for choosing respect and tolerance over prejudice and ignorance.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: MDGovpics via Flickr