A Parallel: Racism and Bullying

After reading an article on Upworthy titled “Is racism traumatizing like bullying? Looks like yes,” I’ve realized that the results of bullying and racism have a lot of parallels. The effects of racism and bullying go hand in hand. When people are bullied or face racism at a young age, their self-esteem is lowered and they will grow up to constantly have their guard up. Oftentimes when people hear about bullying, they think of the classic movie scenes where people are thrown into trash cans or have their lunch money stolen. However, bullying is much more than that. Things such as social isolation, tormenting, name-calling and cyberbullying are also extremely damaging and hurtful. Over time these things frequently destroy people internally and can eventually lower one’s self-esteem. Bullying causes people to hate the person they see in the mirror. When people are bullied because of their looks, personality or something they cannot change, it becomes especially difficult to cope with. Racism is similar to bullying in the way that it breaks down one’s self-esteem. Racist comments make people feel as if something is wrong with them. Racist attacks, whether large or small, have lasting and damaging effects. One of the noteworthy statements in the article I read was “A child who is often picked on when riding the school bus may develop anxiety before those yellow doors open. Similarly, a person who is often followed in stores may develop anxiety before going shopping.” Having to live with either frequent racism or bullying causes anxiety and depression over time. The article on Upworthy includes a video of five people discussing how racism affects their emotional stability. One man named Basil states that “I think later on, if it happens to you a few times, it has a massive effect on you.” Although his statement may be simple, it shows that the effects of bullying on one’s emotional stability are real. If the results of bullying over time are real, than so are the outcomes of racism over time.

The Upworthy article can be found here: http://www.upworthy.com/is-racism-traumatizing-like-bullying-looks-like-yes

– Written by Julia Simon (school representatives team)