By Danielle DeVor

Our culture has morphed into something unrecognizable from when I was a kid. Yes, there were the tabloids back then, but they didn’t hold a candle to internet trolls.

Case in point, Valerie Loureda.

Yesterday, Valerie Loureda posted a photo on social media. It was a beautiful photo. She wore a bikini and was holding her dog. Then, the trolls stepped in. Sofa warriors chose to troll it. Instead of admiring her for who she is, these “brave” people attacked her in several threads. Talked about her dirty feet. Talked about a stain on her bed.

I would love to know why this is the norm. When using social media as a business—which is something fighters must do—you are told to post photos of yourself on a fairly regular basis. (Us writers have to too.)  Why? Because photos with people in them get the biggest response on social media. So, Valerie was not posting this photo to be conceited. It is part of her business arsenal. These days, selfies are a tool.

But, the dark side is the trolls. Some say any attention is good attention. No, it isn’t. Hate is going to make you feel awful, no matter what. Yeah, people say to laugh it off, but it isn’t that easy. Suicide rates are high. There have been numerous cases of people bullied on social media to the point that they either attempt or take their lives.

Why can’t you post a photo of yourself without some moron deciding to give his two cents? Why do these people think immediately that their opinion matters over anyone else’s? Are their lives that petty? Probably so.

Internet shaming isn’t new. But this is beyond school yard bullies. Trolls can only be stopped by people. By those of us who are sick and tired of it. Let’s make a difference.

Sidenote: For anyone that followed my last article. My bloodwork did come out ok. I’m still cancer free.


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