not a laughing matter

[English 2000 essay]

Is Facebook and Twitter the new burn book?? With the uprising of social media throughout society and age groups, controversy continues to break out. In recent years, many stories have up to the surface about students experiencing bullying viral and even committing suicide over the tangents students have through their keyboard. Most recently, a story about and Indiana middle school expelling three middle school tweens for “joking on Facebook about which of their classmates they would like to kill”. What kids do not seem to understand is whether it is face-to-face or through a computer screen, words are hurtful and should be taken seriously. The students parents continue to buck the expulsion claiming the threat was not real and “If you make a legitimate threat against someone … you don’t follow it up with an emoticon.”

Parents claim it is a charge against free-speech for the young’s students. The school is right in expelling these seemingly brainless tween girls for their stunt. It should not matter if an LOL and an emoticon accompanied the threat. The school system had no way of knowing if the threat had truth behind it even though there was a “smile” attached to it. Often times, the ones who accompany a threat with a smile are the sickest of them all!