Stopping Bullying in Schools

October 17, 2017

Theresa Stier, 23, was born and raised in Union County, New Jersey. She graduated from Montclair State University in 2015 with a BA in English and is currently a freelance writer. Theresa enjoys crime shows and action movies. She also always has her eye out for a new pair of shoes.

Bullying in schools is a serious issue. Being a victim personally of being bullied, I know how important it is for classmates to be there for one another. Jeremiah Anthony was one of those classmates. He created an anonymous Twitter account called @WestHighBros which he utilized to send out compliments to his fellow peers.

“I was never bullied myself, nor was bullying rampant at my high school, at least not that I observed. However, I did see classmates getting bullied online and I didn’t think that was fair. Bullying anywhere is not right, bullying in any amount is not good, and bullying itself is unjust. On the flip side, bystanding anywhere is not right, bystanding in any amount is not good, and bystanding itself is unjust.”

With that thought in mind, @WestHighBros was created and Jeremiah had taken the first step in decreasing bullying in his school.

“We saw a massive decrease in instances of bullying in my high school and in places around the world. My dream is a world where anti-bullying groups are not needed. “

We live in a world where social media is the main component of our lives. So knowing that one account could make an impact, imagine if each high school had an anti-bullying social media account. Not only could these accounts stop bullying, it could save someone’s life.

“One day I was getting lunch at my high school and a girl came up and hugged me. Now, I don’t get too many hugs so I asked her if she had mistaken me for someone else. She replied that she was going to kill herself until she saw our positive post about her on her Facebook wall. After that, we experienced an onslaught of similar stories. I feel very lucky for that.”

There are many people that would like to follow in Jeremiah’s footsteps but aren’t sure how. They might be afraid that they might start getting bullied or look “uncool.”

“I feel that some people wanted peacemakers to be quiet and timid. I wasn’t that. I didn’t fit their idea of what someone runs WestHighBros should look like. Some people thought that a peacemaking group had to be absolutely perfect and a peacemaker had to without mistake. People projected my personal flaws onto WestHighBros. “

So, I asked Jeremiah for any advice he would give others that wanted to spread kindness in their school.

“Do it for the love of what you are doing. There will be good days and bad days. Use the bad days to create good days. Notice the little smiles of the people around you. Find the light in the darkness.  Remind yourself that you live in the best time to be a human. Fewer people go hungry now that before, human rights are getting ever more universal, the world is largely more peaceful. Love does win. ”

Jeremiah is currently a college student, hoping to attend law school next year. His long-term goal is to go into politics and try to change things for the better.