This caught my attention when it came up on AMERICAblog , and just about set my purple and blue and dull brown hair on fire. Just that chunk was enough to set my brain to stewing on it, way under the surface. I have sat on it and tried to just keep my fingers away from the shiny, shiny laptop keyboard. Obviously, I have given in.
This switch from calling bullying to ‘peer pressure’ is incredibly disturbing. It is an attempt to advocate for continued disruptive negative emotional, mental and physical interactions for people you don’t like, for whatever reason. Calling it peer pressure is like saying that it is ok to beat the crap out of someone you don’t like, just so you can make them want to ‘appear’ to be more like you and that you will stop if they do. I don’t hate to say this, but it simply doesn’t work that way.
Peer pressure, that urge to conform, is not an external event. It is internal, a desire to belong and fit in. Peer pressure is more often associated with negative activities than positive ones. To hook up bullying as a form of external peer pressure is nothing more than an excuse to continue abusing those you don’t like. Bullying, no matter how you dress it up in drag with different words, is a form of serious abuse.
The person quoted about LGBT youth being 5 times more likely to commit suicide. Well, brain trust, it isn’t hard to figure out that your ‘peer pressure’ idea is a major contributor to those suicides in the first place. Continuing the abuse is really going to bring those numbers down, right? Well, yes, if you go by the fact that those kids are now dead, you are indeed bringing down the number of future LGBT people in the world.
Another ‘problem’ with the peer pressure idea is that all that will happen, should it go as the person supposes, is that those LGBT youth that give in and ‘behave’ ‘normally’ will still be who they are and simply hide it. It is nothing more that a forced shove right back into the closet. That has worked out so well in the past. So, this is just an attempt to get LGBT youth visibility back to zero using ‘peer pressure’ aka bullying to achieve that so desirable goal.
I cannot imagine how a mind justifies the terrorizing and abuse of another person, especially those that are ill-equipped to handle the stresses and are still developing impulse control, opinions and other mature responses to the outside world. To advocate for ‘peer pressure’ as a healthy thing is to white wash and ignore the reality of bullying. This bird won’t fly.