Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Stand Up to Bullying & Wear Pink in Second Life

In September of 2007, a boy in rural Nova Scotia wore a pink polo shirt to his first day at a new school. A group of bullies targeted him for that, called him a "fag" and threatened to beat him up. Two seniors at the school took exception to this, went out and bought 30 pink t-shirts and tank tops and then emailed their friends asking them to wear the shirts to school to make a statement. The news spread and more than 30 students showed up the next day wearing pink. The young boy was, as you would expect, thrilled. The bullies were silent. The story was picked up by the CBC and then went worldwide.

It's not really that easy to stop bullying but it is easy to make the point that you won't tolerate it. In Canada, the 3rd wednesday of February is Pink Shirt Day - making schools, streets and businesses look like the Barbie aisle in Toys R Us - and the sheer prevalence of the colour pink does make a powerful statement.

Pink Shirt Day has spread. Around the world International STAND UP to Bullying Day is going to be celebrated this year on Friday February 25th in 25 countries and you will see pink shirts by the thousands.

Inworld I found two groups working to stop bullying. OvercomeBullying.org has a presence as well as the Anti-Violence Campus. If you are dealing with bullying anywhere (school, work, online or even in SL) these organizations may be able to give you the help and support you need. You can also find many resources online or in your community. The important thing is not where you get the help - it's that you do.

I don't like bullies and I hope that I can always say I don't tolerate their behaviour (just because it's a friend who does it should not make it something you ignore). My wearing this shirt won't end bullying but it does remind me to stick to my principles. I hope on Friday the 25th you'll consider wearing pink to show your own conviction that bullying has no place in any version of our life.

Pink isn't really a colour I wear but for one day a year I think of it as a real fashion statement. Hey at least I'm not asking you to wear an ugly Christmas sweater! :)




My pose is from Gesticulate!


Mera Kranfel said...

wonderful! I will blog this and wear pink both irl, in SL and inWorldz that day! Thats a promise =)

Honour McMillan said...

Yay!!! :)

Apmel said...

Great post..also Apmel will wear pink on friday :)

Honour McMillan said...

a sea of pink would be good! :)

Lyrilen said...

Both girls off to rl school in pink (which I understand is not the stretch it might be, but the first girl is a spiderman addict). Thank you Honour. Your posts are a delight.

Honour McMillan said...

thank you! and yes I'm heading to the store in a pink top I borrowed from my niece :)

Brinda said...

I see this as just one more step on such a very long journey.

I had a dear friend bullied and driven out out of school nearly sixty years ago...It is time to stop.

It's another case if not me?
Then who?
And if not now?
Then when?

Honour McMillan said...

you're absolutely right - and the steps might be small, but without them we'll never get there

Bradd Laval said...

Bravo! Excellent anti-bully initiative. From an Inworldz resident :)

Honour McMillan said...

I didn't mean to slight any other vw :) It would be cool if the entire metaverse turned pink for a day!

Mera Kranfel said...

Bradd! A real man like you can wear any colour! Its even more manly to wear pink actually = shows confidence <3 =)

nimil said...

omg i totally forgot about this this year >_< for some reason i kept thinking it was in march! thank you for the reminder!

i was bullied all to hell in high school because i was not a christian. people are so violent when you are different, its scary.

Anonymous said...

Would love to help you with this, but because of recent indication that Linden Lab is not going to ban the Redzone device and creator, nor demand that current database of IP addresses already collected, be disposed of, was just put at great risk concerning bullies/stalkers.
Those who really need to speak out about this will not be able to.
Thank you for calling attention.