Even today’s celebrities are not immune to cyber bullying. Where once online abuse was considered an inconvenience one had to suffer through in exchange for fame and fortune, more and more celebrities have come to the conclusion that social media is perhaps more troublesome than it’s worth. Some are even thankfully doing something about it, using their fame to raise awareness against the physical and mental threat cyber bullying poses.
One such person is actor singer Aaron Yan who in the past was also a victim of bullying. The actor has been quite open about his experiences and has candidly talked about the effort it took for him to bounce back from that dark place. So at the heels of the shocking news of former f(x) member Sulli’s suspected suicide yesterday, it’s no surprise that Aaron took to social media to put out a heartfelt plea for people to be kinder to each other and be more mindful of their words and the consequences of their actions.
[It’s a pity], [why choose this course of action?], [She is my goddess].
Can I please ask everyone not to manifest their feelings so superficially? This incident (and the underlying issue) is well worth our careful reflection. First of all, we must understand that man and all living creatures on earth are the same. Like antelopes constantly scanning their surroundings while they graze, hungry polar bears traversing unfamiliar environs in search of food and zebras migrating to different locales to avoid territories highly populated by lions and tigers, we are all born with an instinct to survive. How great then is the agony, how unbearable the pressure, for a person to completely relinquish her instinct to survive – that is what we should be thinking about.
How many suicide cases have been provoked by cyber violence, how many more lives must be lost before you start empathizing with the person you’ve ganged up on and hated?
[Black Mirror] [13 Reasons Why] [The World Between Us] are all telling us that abusive words pervading online are no different from knives, guns, swords and poison in real life. It’s once again warning people to never underestimate the big issue of online verbal abuse which clearly needs to be addressed. Stop positioning these words of abuse as “Freedom of Speech”, for in fact “Freedom of Speech” does not include defamation, libel and slander at all. Many seem to be engaging in a witch hunt like they did in the Middle Ages, happily hunting and scolding to death those they don’t see eye to eye with and not giving a damn about the consequences. Nor have they paused to consider that if the shoe was on the other foot, will they themselves be able to stomach the damage such vitriolic words can make.
So, before you fire off an insult, I’m begging you to take a moment to step back and think – is this really the world we want to live in? Or does everyone think that “this is already the case anyway” and since we can’t change anything, why even bother? Change is a long and painful process but if we are unwilling to take the first step, then don’t mention “change”. Please, give yourself and the world something to be hopeful for and BE the change regardless of others. But if y’all think that this is all bull crap, then just chalk it up to me talking nonsense. What I can’t stomach though is that when somebody else chooses to take their own life after the darkness has all but consumed them that there will still be voices asking “why did they make this choice?”. #stoponlinebullying
Think before you speak and be kind. Some food for thought from Aaron Yan who clearly knows what he’s talking about.
Thank you for translating his post! Very thoughtful and insightful. RIP Sulli.