Survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have been enduring a new type of assault since the harrowing ordeal that claimed 17 lives on Valentine's Day -- online trolls and cyber-bullies.
The teenage survivors-turned-activists have been fielding conspiracy theories and accusations that they're simply "crisis actors" who were never at the school to begin with.
The students have also been subject to insults about their appearance, sexual orientation and race.
["Brown bald lesbian" is the shameful nickname of choice for bullies who make it their mission to go after Emma Gonzalez, who has been one of the most prominent faces of the #NeverAgain movement.]
Shockingly, even their very lives have been threatened.
The Associated Press writes:
"University of Maryland professor Danielle Citron, who studies online harassment, said such internet mobs are meant 'to silence and to intimidate' and to 'shut down a social movement in its tracks.' But Citron said the younger generation, who are steeped in social media, can be resilient."
“They see us as a threat. And honestly, that’s kind of entertaining to me. And I love it because it means what we are doing is working. We are changing the world,” David Hogg said of the trolls to MSNBC on Wednesday.
As bullying has been pinpointed as a root cause of mass shootings in general, I find it appalling and incredibly hypocritical that anyone would find it appropriate to respond to any of the students in this type of manner -- even if you adamantly disagree with their ideas on gun control.
What do you think about all of this?
If you or someone you know is a victim of bullying, please visit https://www.stopbullying.gov/get-help-now/index.html for helpful resources.