In this Friday, Oct. 3, 2014 photograph, audience members react as members of the Sayreville Board of Education hold a press conference at the Selover School in South Amboy, N.J., to address a hazing incident that "went too far" and is at the center of the investigation into the Sayreville War Memorial High School football team. On Monday, Oct. 6, 2014 school superintendent Richard Labbe said the Sayreville War Memorial High School football season has been canceled amid allegations of harassment, intimidation and bullying among players. (APPhoto/ Home News Tribune, Mark R. Sullivan) On Friday October 3,,2014 Photo: Mark R. Sullivan/Home News Tribune/AP
In this Friday, Oct. 3, 2014 photograph, audience members react as members of the Sayreville Board of Education hold a press conference at the Selover School in South Amboy, N.J., to address a hazing incident that “went too far” and is at the center of the investigation into the Sayreville War Memorial High School football team. On Monday, Oct. 6, 2014 school superintendent Richard Labbe said the Sayreville War Memorial High School football season has been canceled amid allegations of harassment, intimidation and bullying among players. (APPhoto/ Home News Tribune, Mark R. Sullivan) On Friday October 3,,2014 Photo: Mark R. Sullivan/Home News Tribune/AP

This caption says it all: The people pictured are crying and clearly disturbed because the football season was canceled, not because some players sexually violated others. Sayreville students are equally disturbed. According to The New York TimesSayreville High School students are tweeting their virulent rejection of the decision to cancel the football season. One 16-year-old female student wrote that venom against first-year students had increased: “If freshmen thought we hated them before we sure as hell hate them now.” In this same article, the Times reports that “[a]nother girl posted a picture of two trash bins, saying it was a real picture of the freshman football team.” Such electronic depravity or “e-depravity” reminds me so much of the angry mobs that attacked black children in the 1950s:

This venom has significant consequences for the psyche, the soul, and the bodies of those who have come under attack. In the aftermath of the backlash at Sayreville, one freshman on the football team told the Times that he “wanted to shoot [himself].” I hope the town, the adults, and the students believe this child because he wouldn’t be the first child to kill himself after having e-rocks hurled at him in cyberspace.

R.I.P. Tyler Clementi and all the others who took their own lives because an ugly, mean spirited, mob using the internet and new technology were persistent in their efforts to kill them.

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