The question that is on many people’s minds is “how could have this happened to Phoebe Prince?” There has been substantial disgust on what happened to her, not only the constant harassment but the lack of anyone stepping forward or up to stop it. Where was the outrage while it was happening? Is our outrage only shown after-the-fact?
From the news reports, it seems that many of the school staff members just let it slide when others called her names, drew unkind pictures of her, and just made her life miserable each and every day. No outrage then.
It seems that not all students were involved in Phoebe’s harassment, so why didn’t someone stand up or step forward and try to discourage it, report it, or stop it. Yes, these are teenagers, but there has to be some decency and backbones still within people. No outrage.
After-the-fact, we have outrage. District Attorney Elizabeth Scheibel deserves praise in pressing charges against the key youth involved in the torture. Take a look at each of their faces very closely. Could this be you? Or, are you the blank face that just watched… The parents pictures should be published along with the teachers and school administrators.
Someone, it seems, could have stepped in.
What has caused us and our children to lose the ability to make decisions which would help someone? We have to teach our children to make decisions that do not hurt people so deeply. We need to teach our children to take a stand when someone is being hurt.
With Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and texting, we cannot lose our humanity and decision-making sensibilities. We need to inspire this generation to be a generation of a new civility. The Greatest Generation stepped up many years ago to preserve freedom. We need to encourage this generation to be one that drives a new tone, a new civility across all interactions — electronic and face-to-face.