October 24, 2013

Letter: Hanging loose and unsupervised

It was with deep sadness that I read of the suicide death of a 12-year-old girl, Rebecca Sedwick, in Winter Haven, Fla. Her death was a result of bullying primarily by two girls, ages 14 and 12.

Police in central Florida said Rebecca was tormented online and at school by as many as 15 girls before she climbed a tower at an abandoned concrete plant and jumped to her death on  Sept. 9.

“‘Yes, I bullied Rebecca and she killed herself but I don’t give a ...’ and you can add the last word yourself,” Sheriff Grady Judd said, quoting a Facebook post by the 14-year-old.

What has happened to our youth? How could a 14-year-old make such a remark about  someone who she tormented so badly the girl had rather take her life than to continue to put up with the emotional torment this girl put her through?

In that same article I read that Rebecca is one of at least a dozen or so suicides in the past three years that were attributed at least in part to cyber-bullying. A New Jersey-based lawyer told The Associated Press last month that it is difficult to bring charges against someone  accused of driving a person to suicide, in part because of free speech laws.

Have we as a people lost all sense of right and wrong? Do we think it is more important to let people rave and rant and use all kinds of abusive language, like telling a 12-year-old “to drink bleach and die” like the 14-year-old allegedly told Rebecca about a year ago, than to make laws that could prevent the death of at least dozens of our youth by bullying? Yes, we have free speech laws. But our rights should not come before the damage and death in many cases of our people. And mostly our youth in the cases of bullying.

New laws need to be made concerning freedom of speech. Our rights should end when the abuse of them causes harm to our people. Parents should pay more attention to what their children look at on the computer and TV. If they constantly watch violence and evil acts they become corrupted until they no longer have a conscience and cease to have feelings or compassion for other human beings.

The fact that the 14-year-old could make the remark that she bullied Rebecca and she killed herself and she doesn’t care is an example of what can happen to a child left “to hang loose unsupervised,” as a neighbor said of her and other children on the street.

Helen L. Kizer


Text Only
  • Tax holiday weekend is perfect time to shop

    August means children across the state are headed back to school, and for parents that means it’s time to buy new shoes and clothes for children who have outgrown their old ones. It means it’s time to buy new school supplies, and it may even mean it’s time to get a child a new computer to do their school work.

    July 30, 2014

  • "We’ve had a great ride"

    For 60 years, the Green Spot has been a part of Dalton. It survived long after most other locally owned grocery stores in the area had folded to competition from big chain grocery stores and to big box super stores.

    July 29, 2014

  • Charles Oliver: Traveler from a district in Columbia?

    Jim Gray was traveling out of Orlando International Airport when a Transportation Security Administration officer tried to stop him from boarding his plane.

    July 29, 2014

  • Letter: Children are not the enemy

    We recently read somewhere that our country is at war, not with another nation but with one another.

    July 29, 2014

  • Ensuring the joy of reading

    They’re little, they’re libraries, and best of all, they’re free.

    July 28, 2014

  • Move carefully, but soon

    No one intended for it to happen. No one had any bad motives.
    But during a period of 40 years or more, quite a few people didn’t do enough planning, didn’t have enough foresight to see what all of the development in Dalton would do.

    July 27, 2014

  • Local school systems must bear costs of federal immigration failure

    No word. No warning. Little help.
    That’s what Dalton Public Schools officials received from the federal government when it dropped 30 Central American students into local classrooms last school year.

    July 26, 2014

  • Sacrifices worth honoring

    Members of the Dalton City Council were recently approached by representatives of the local chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart with a request to declare Dalton a Purple Heart City. Council members indicated they will approve the request.

    July 24, 2014

  • We must do better

    The numbers tell a sad tale.
    Registered voters: 36,843.
    Cards cast: 5,307.
    That means the turnout for Tuesday’s runoffs in Whitfield County was a measly 14.4 percent, according to unofficial results from the Whitfield County elections office.

    July 23, 2014

  • Letter: Control immigration

    Thousands are starting to pour into our country, and things are getting personal. Why would we end up the bad guys if we turn away children who aren’t ours? How does it make us better people to let one man steal from our children and stand by and do nothing?

    July 23, 2014