In the last few weeks, I’ve been going back through and re-reading some of the books I haven’t picked up in years. Carrie, was one of these and I didn’t realize how much of it I’d forgotten. About a week after I finished reading it again, I finally watched the movie remake and I enjoyed it.
The book and movie are more haunting now than what they used to be. On a deeper level, the story cuts to the bone of our society and how we treat other human beings. I admit, I was picked on and made fun of at school for years. Did it hurt? Hell yes. Did I ever want revenge? Hell yes. Those early teen years planted the seeds that grew into the person I am now. To cope, I took refuge in Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Clive Barker novels. I stayed up late on weekends and watched Monsters, Tales From the Darkside, Tales From the Crypt, and episodes of the Twilight Zone revival. Watching horrible things happen to these other people helped me see it could always be worse. I found the humor, beauty, and lessons in the scary stories. I learned to be comfortable with who I was and what I wanted to do. At that point, I stopped caring what everyone thought and started being me.
I think we’ve all had those moments where the world gangs up on us and brings us down. When we try to get up, they point and laugh while they kick us back down again. The majority of us rise above it and are better people than the poor lost souls who have to feel good about themselves by tearing others apart.
It has happened to us all and we have all been laughed at for one thing or another. How do those who bully learn it? I venture to say they were the victim themselves and they learned to cope by dishing it back others. Look around at the social media issues today. There are no places where some of these kids can run to escape the bullies and the pain they feel. When I was made fun of, it was in a hallway or lunchroom where only a few people could hear. Now, the whole world hears it. I found my solace in books and writing. Now, solace is found in the barrel of a gun. Just as Carrie White found solace in the destruction of her peers, mother, and town; some find it in snuffing out those who caused them pain. The idea that this happens over and over is heartbreaking. The idea that kids are being bullied over and over in silence is just as heartbreaking.
I didn’t intend for this to be a big soapbox speech, but I suppose it did. We all hurt, we all feel pain. Inside of us, there is a Carrie White. When the bullies come, how will we react? Will we become Carrie and get even in a field of blood or will we rise above and be the better person? I hope I’ve instilled in my sons the compassion to not be bullies. So far, they have shown me they are compassionate toward their classmates and I am proud of them both. I hope every parent can teach their kids how to get along and be better people. Bullying is not funny and it stops with education in the home before it stops with a bullet.
(Steps down from box)
Think about it…