The Declaration of Rights of the Bullied
|7 min read
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RobynRose's avatar
By RobynRose   |   Watch
210 141 51K (1 Today)
Published: July 24, 2013
You have the right to feel pain and hurt when someone says or does something that hurts you, even unintentionally.

You have the right to brush off someone else's words and actions and not allow them to affect your life.

You have the right to lose respect for someone who hurts you.

You have the right to be empathetic, and choose to understand that their words don't necessarily mean who they are.

You have the right to believe that someone is bullying you out of sheer sadistic cruelty.

You have the right to believe that sometimes the meanest people are those who are the most hurt inside.

You have the right to stand up for yourself in the heat of the moment. To call out behaviour that hurts you or others. To point fingers and say "This is wrong. This needs to change."

You have the right to stand up for yourself days, weeks, months or years after the fact. Sometimes you graduate from school and you and that bully are both in your 30s. Maybe they've matured. Maybe they haven't. You have the right to say to them, "You bullied me years ago."

You have the right to your own safety. If you suspect violence or escalation from a bully, you have the right to stay silent. To run away and hide. To guage for yourself what your next move should be.

You have the right to tell whomever you want about your bullying. Your friends, your parents, your teachers, the police.

You have the right to stay silent.

Sometimes friends will gossip.
Sometimes parents tell you it's not such a big deal.
Sometimes teachers will tell you to just try harder to make friends.
Sometimes police will tell you that it's your own fault.

You have the right to call out school and work administration on verbal threats. If someone says "I'm going to kill you with a knife," You do not have to wait until violence occurs. You can call the police. You can demand safety. You do not have to treat threats as empty or meaningless.

You have the right to avoid police action if you feel they are untrustworthy or biased.

You have the right to online safety, and a space that is free from verbal and image harassment.

Free speech does not mean freedom to harass.

You have the right to block anyone you choose on any service you choose for any reason you choose. You are not a coward for doing so.

Free speech does not mean freedom from criticism.
You have the right to engage bullies and tell them to stop. You own your profiles and your spaces. Your youtube channel, your blog. You can moderate who gets their words seen by the world and who doesn't. You have the right to tell someone they are being hurtful, and that their words will make them unwelcome.

You have the right to give warnings.
You have the right to block without warning.

Free speech does not mean safety in anonymity.
You have the right to report someone's behaviour to site administration. You have the right to disable and delete anonymous comments. You have the right to record and gather evidence of bullying, to report threats and harassment to the police.

You have the right to talk about your experiences with bullying. You can write journals, news articles and make videos expressing your experiences and opinions.

You have the right to be constantly talking about bullying. You have the right to be obsessed with bullying. You have the right to never stop talking about bullying. You have the right to be "no fun anymore" because you're always talking about bullying. You have the right to take things too seriously.

You have the right to be who you are, online and in person. You have the right to your body, your gender, your sexuality, your religion, your background and your future.

You have the right to like the things and hobbies that you like. To wear the clothes you want. To speak and exist in a way that suits you.

You have the right to conceal yourself.

You have the right to keep your hobbies and interests secret. To never show a picture of your face online. You have the right to conceal your gender or sexuality or personality to keep yourself safe from harm. You have the right to alter the way you present yourself to the world for the sake of survival.

You have the right to transition between these two states. If being who you are openly is so painful, such a target on your back, you have the right to retreat to safety. You are not a coward. You are not less of a person for taking care of yourself.

You have the right to be a leader. Someone that people can look up to and take initiative from. You can spearhead anti-bullying campaigns. You can be proactive. You can contribute to change.

You have the right to defend yourself. You do not owe the world your help. You do not need to break yourself for the sake of others. You can follow. You can be silent. You are not a coward.

You have the right to introspection and reflection. You have the right to spend as much time as you want dwelling on your feelings of hurt. You have the right to imagine how your life would be different without bullying. You have the right to cry, publicly, or privately, over things that hurt you.

You have the right to have hope.
You have the right to feel hopeless.


You have the right to not smile, to not be happy, to not show the world a brave face when you are being hurt. You have the right to emotional honesty. No one can demand from you happiness when you are not happy. You are not a coward. You have the right not to keep your chin up.

You have the right to feel defeated, beaten and bruised. You have the right to feel loss and grief and hurt. You have the right to think that that bully has won, fully and utterly. You are not a coward.

You have the right to feel like you are bigger and better than that bully. You have the right to feel moral outrage. You have the right to feel like It Won't Get Better Unless You Make It Get Better.

You have the right to exist in a space that is physically and emotionally safe.
You have the right to demand that adults take responsibility and make it that way.

You have the right to be permanently damaged by bullying.
You have the right to let your experiences help you grow and become more as a human being.



Know your rights.



(This video will not work for some viewers (USA). It works in Canada. For US residents, try Netflix or Hulu.)
Bully: the Movie (2011) (documentary)
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Comments141
anonymous's avatar
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AnnaGladue's avatar
AnnaGladueProfessional Traditional Artist
I came to look for reference and I found this. It is beautiful. I have been bullied, and have in turn bullied one who bullied me. It was years ago, but I wish I could say sorry to him, even if he never felt sorry for bullying me.
charleyed's avatar
Thank you, Kxhara.

It has been many years since I was bullied, but I have been unable to forget most of it.

Thank you.........

Love
 
AmbreeChristineSkye's avatar
"If someone is trying to bring you down it's only because you are above them." -Unknown-
OmairaAndCairistiona's avatar
OmairaAndCairistionaHobbyist General Artist
Amen to that
xLaramiex's avatar
xLaramiexHobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you.
Michael-Sherman's avatar

Paterson NJ has a whole population of people pulling their pants down and being excessively confrontational. They play the race card when addressed or just say to mind your own business.

 

This topic of decency is not so simple when the very characteristics you demonize here are thrown at you when they call everyone my nigger or the bitch.

 

"Precious", "Antoine Fisher" and other films address deeply attached behavioral traits that may be falsely attributed to culture, gender or "peer group".

 

John Lennon.."All we are saying...is give peace a chance"

Michael-Sherman's avatar

Life grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;

 

the courage to change the things I can;

 

and the wisdom to know the difference.

 

 

It is very hard to stay quite and live thru the pain. Sadly, freedom of speech doesn't do much for being serene. I hope you can find calming moments and safe places.

 

 

RavenBaraq's avatar
RavenBaraqHobbyist Writer
This is really great.  Thanks! :)
Ravynflight's avatar
RavynflightHobbyist Digital Artist
*cough* Use the bully effect video instead, it shows the before and after of the kid who was in the bully project ^-^ Also as someone who has been bullied I believe you are correct, thank you for posting this ^-^
thegroon's avatar
thegroon Artist
All the artists on DA get it...
The worst was getting punished, even hauled off by the police for being bullied.
And then having your parents sympathize with the bullies more than you.
And having your sister date the bullies.
Apparently the bullies were the victims and I was selfish for having been bullied. I guess I should have been more considerate.
Bull...shit.
Lady-Lumiya's avatar
Lady-LumiyaHobbyist
wow man, that IS major bull s***, wth is up with the logic of some people!
campestris's avatar
campestrisHobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much, Kxhara. It means a lot for me, really. I`ve always been bullied because of my age. I went to school earlier then others so used to be the youngest in the form. Some of my classmates thought the fact that I`m only three years younger is enough to hurt me.
But I managed to make best friends with others, anyway. :)
However, I strongly belive that offending somebody causes harm to the bully more than to the victim. So I just try to forgive anyone who tried to damage me and to live peacefully. Am I wrong?
AardvarkEcho's avatar
AardvarkEchoProfessional Photographer
Sadly, the right to feel my feelings was something I had to discover, many long years after the instillation of the fact that I would be punished for expressing those feelings.

I was told I did not, in fact, have the right to be upset when I was disciplined. Thinking back on it, I half wonder what in the world that person was thinking; if I feel absolutely nothing, genuinely nothing, when I am being disciplined, then shouldn't I never learn to avoid discipline through failure to misbehave?

Wouldn't this cause me to be an even worse child than I was? It made no sense to me then, too, but for different reasons.

Now, I am a very pragmatic, practical, logical individual. I call a lot of people on their bullshit. It doesn't make me many friends, but it keeps me from being surrounded by ill-intentioned people.

Yes. You have every right to feel whatever it is you feel about whatever it was that happened to, in front of, or because of, you. 

What you do not have the right to do is assume you can get away with doing nothing about it and hope it will improve on its own. Proactivity keeps the world spinning; the old adage, "the only thing that needs to happen for evil to succeed is for good men to do nothing" is true in a number of ways. The only right you do not, and should not, ever have, is to do nothing.

But on that note, please, seek wisdom before choosing a kneejerk reaction.
-AE
chronica00's avatar
Fight like its mortal kombat then the bully will learn :D
Princess-Toast's avatar
:C I'm not really sure where 'being mean' becomes 'bullying'. But I've been friends with someone when I was smaller that constantly bossed me around, saying she was my friend, but she never meant it. I was just someone to vent her anger on.

I never left her until much later because of my low self esteem. I thought I deserved it, because that's how my father raised me to think. I couldn't go to school without people teasing me 'Are you going to cry? Are you going to cry?', and when I got home I just felt worse. I didn't have anybody to talk to.

Middle School I was suicidal, and that's when I found that I could put my emotions into artwork. Writing literature and drawing helped me get through everything. And finally I decided to ditch that 'friend' of mine. I went from the shy girl that cried in class, to a quiet girl that people were scared of.

I've got genuine friends now (I think they're genuine), and they all tell me that I'm scary. Joking around saying they're glad I'm their friend so they can get friendship discounts when I take over the world.

That 'friend' of mine really did change who I was. If it wasn't for her, I would probably still be shy and unable to talk to people. So I'm almost glad that I went through that, even if it was tough. C:
SarcasticSeejay's avatar
I was bullied as a kid once. Kid was much bigger than me. So I smacked the guy with a chair. I got in a little trouble, but no one fucked with me after that. Matter of fact, I was friends with the kid after that. 

you know, just because someone is doing something that's their legal right doesn't make them any less of a whiny bitch who can't stand up for themselves.
Skadoske's avatar
SkadoskeStudent Digital Artist
:iconbravoplz:
SerenaHarmonia's avatar
SerenaHarmoniaStudent General Artist
It means a lot... :) thanks!
analillithbar's avatar
analillithbarHobbyist General Artist
I cannot tell you how very much this means to me. Wonderfully worded and with effective formatting.

:iconbravoplz:
Strudel--Cutie4427's avatar

You have the right to be who you are, online and in person. You have the right to your body, your gender, your sexuality, your religion, your background and your future.

 

That's where it really got me. that one line... There were other lines too, but that's the one line that really stood out for me. Thank you so much for making this!

Zenoxen's avatar
ZenoxenHobbyist General Artist
Sometimes teachers will tell you to just try harder to make friends. -> I heard that one from my parents....just nobody wanted to be my friend to avoid becomming a target.

Sometimes police will tell you that it's your own fault. -> In Portugal, police ignores you unless you got knifed and ended in the hospital.


Reveriesian's avatar
ReveriesianHobbyist Digital Artist
"I'm going to kill you with a knife," You do not have to wait until violence occurs."
Sadly in many countries you really must wait for the Violence to occur in order for the police to actually do something about it :( I wish I was exaggerating but I'm not, our justice is just that blind...
SarcasticSeejay's avatar
What is the police gonna do? Arrest him for potential homicide? Get a weapon. Defend yourself.
anonymous's avatar
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