Bullying is making news everywhere.
Schools hold workshops on it. Books are written about it. A television anchor — harassed for being overweight — speaks out against it.
To which alert “06880” reader Jennifer Johnson writes:
There are many forms of bullying. We should not tolerate any of it in our community.
I would like to urge you not to allow your blog to be a source of anonymous bullying in our community.
I fully support the opportunities for Westporters to share ideas and express opinions, as your blog does. Where I have trouble stomaching your blog is when “anonymous comments” are posted that have a direct or indirect tone of personal attack. This is a form of bullying.
October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Please take a lead in our community in showing that bullying, at any age and on any topic, is not tolerated.
I am — and continue to be — a fervent 1st Amendment supporter. Americans have the right to express opinions — anonymously, if they wish. It’s a tradition dating back to the Federalist Papers, now affirmed by law — and “06880” is a forum that allows them to do so.
Yet the Federalist Papers were strongly worded articles and essays, arguing forcefully for the adoption of the Constitution. They were not attacks on individuals, and opinions were backed up with facts.
I know, I know: Comments typed quickly on a 21st century blog are different from those written laboriously by quill and ink 225 years ago.
But if we use the Federalist Papers as a raison d’etre for allowing anonymous comments, we should also use them as a model for what to say, and how to say it.
No bullying, please, on “06880.”
This month, or any other.