I attended a bullying panel event where they talked about the ripples effect of bullying. It doesn’t effect just the person being bullied or even the bully, but it has an effect on those around them: family, friends, classmates, etc. Below is a tragic example of this. From The Huffington Post:
The father who set out on an inspiring cross-country journey following his gay son’s suicide was reportedly killed last night by a truck in Colorado, midway through his walk across America.
According to KTVB, Joe Bell died late last night after being struck and killed by a semi-truck. Officials said that the driver was charged with reckless driving and may have fallen asleep at the wheel.
After his 15-year-old son Jadin Bell killed himself after allegedly being bullied by classmates, Bell vowed he would walk cross-county, stopping to speak and raise awareness about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth along the way. Beginning in Oregon, he planned to walk 15 to 25 miles a day and speak on behalf of Faces For Change, an anti-bullying foundation established in his son’s memory.
Before you bully someone, before you do it just for a few laughs thinking that whoever it is may get over it after they cry a while, think about the people beyond your victim, and what effect it may have on them. They may not all be as tragic as this, but large or small it is still an effect beyond just getting your momentary humor.