With great sadness and dismay, I watched the news over the last couple of days and learned about the tragic rape, bullying and suicide of Rehtaeh Parsons in Nova Scotia.
These tragic events break my heart. What kind of kids are we raising? Are they spoiled? …entitled?
Could it be that the huge increase in internet use has desensitized everyone from the results of their own words or actions? There must be some way for the consequences of these actions to be suffered by those at fault. When someone throws a punch in a physical fight, there are visual, physical and emotional consequences. The participants feel their own injuries and pain, as well as witnessing those of the other participant(s). There are no first-hand perceptions with cyber-bullying. The anonymity and distance provided by the internet allow perpetuators to just turn off their computers – and their own consciences.
Something has to be done to address this issue.
Below is an email I received from a friend of Rehtaeh Parsons and her mother. If you feel the same way, please do sign this petition for action.
I am heartbroken and outraged.
My friend Leah’s 17 year old daughter, Rehtaeh Parsons, took her life this week. Seventeen months ago, she was raped. The rape was photographed and the photos were shared around her Nova Scotia community. She was called a slut. She was bullied. She faced depression, and now she’s gone.
After Rehtaeh’s rape, police investigated for a year, but said there was not enough evidence to lay charges — I can’t believe it.
I started this petition demanding an independent inquiry into the police investigation. Why is it that everyone knows Rehtaeh was raped, that photos of the rape were taken and shared, that Rehtaeh was bullied and shamed — but still police said they didn’t have the evidence they needed to pursue charges?
This is a failure of the justice system, and now a 17 year old girl is lost forever. Please sign this petition and share it with everyone you know.
A friend of the Parsons family