From Senator Jim Perchard.
WE live in an internet age. Communicating to people around the world is a matter of a few clicks of the mouse.
However, if you look at this internet age from a different point of view, you will realise that it has in fact bred some illegal and unethical practices.
While some use the internet for gaining information, others use it for destruction of sensitive data, or for demeaning and abusing individuals or organisations. While some use the web as a communication platform, others use it for and derive pleasure from intruding in the internet privacy of individuals and seek enjoyment from cyber-bullying.
Cyber-bullying and internet abuse is a growing and serious concern. The remoteness, even anonymity, provided by the internet encourages many users to behave with a boldness they would not otherwise display in any face-to-face encounters.
It is widely claimed that adult bullies are unable to cope with their own lives and problems and that they are easily intimidated and have strong feelings of jealousy and inadequacy.
They are thought to be desperate to receive attention, which they probably don’t receive at home or in relationships. I have noticed that they continually seek to discredit those in authority, particularly those who are influential, knowledgeable, capable and successful.
Even though many of them will understand when they have behaved wrongly, they still wish to appear as though they are morally superior. Strangely, they insist that others have attacked them and that they are the victims. It seems to me that they seek to lead and manipulate an unsuspecting group of their virtual friends to bandwagon, or gang up on, a target and try to gain attention for themselves by any means possible, usually through humiliating their target.
It is true that occasionally they can appear plausible, by introducing a cocktail of fact and fiction, but I am convinced that cyber-bullies are always vindictive and manipulative liars. They often, in an attempt to justify their behaviour, threaten their target with referral to a higher authority, eg the law, the UK Ministry of Justice, even the European courts, imagining that such authorities would be interested in the detail behind their vindictive tirade of abuse and bullying.
It seems that they are unable to internalise their own behaviours and become angry and unreasonable if someone attempts to point out how they were wrong or how their behaviour was unacceptable.
Cyber-bullies, like all bullies, will eventually prey on those closest to them in order to resist entering into permanent and lasting friendships. This is because they are mentally disturbed people who are incapable of having meaningful relationships. It is symptomatic that they find solace and power alone in their virtual world in front of their computer screens.
We as a society are learning about cyber-bullying at great personal and emotional cost to the many victims and their families. I hope that it will not be long before we establish acceptable boundaries in respect of the rights to freedom of expression, balanced against the rights to security and privacy of the individual.
I have given very careful consideration to the content of this letter, as I know it will provoke a hostile reaction in my direction, from cyber-bullies and internet abusers, those who believe it is their right to publish on the internet defamatory and hostile untruths about others. I for one am prepared to stand up to these bullies. I shall not be intimidated by them.Le Perchoir,Rue de la Vignette,St Martin.
Article posted on 28th February, 2009 - 10.00am
Dear Senator Perchard,
As you are the Minister of Health and Social Services, may I respectively suggest that you address the problem of bullying in your own departments before trying to comment on the internet and cast psychological 'fortune teller' readings on users of the internet. Is it correct that there are only white consultants at the hospital here?
I think if you take a look at one of your departments - Social Services - you will realise that it has in fact bred some illegal and unethical practices.
I derive no pleasure from having to resort to 'blogging' to raise awareness of the illegal actions of States Departments. however you have left me no alternative. I have been bullied and intimidated by your department for months now. One conversation went 'well can't your husband find somewhere else to live then we'll give you your son back', I said 'sorry?', they repeated what they had said, I said ' are you joking? you do actually realise that I have 5 other children don't you? You want me to destroy the lives of the children and tell their father to leave home? I can't do that there's 5 children's lives to think about', and then they said 'it's OK the kids will bounce back', and my reply was 'well I'm sorry I can't talk to you anymore' and put the phone down. I had to, I was so upset at the time, just had a baby, and was sick of being intimidated.
I have tried 'face-to-face' boldness, however your employees appear to be trained in the art of deafness and carry on reading from their script, oblivious to what I am saying.
Apart from dealing with your departments, my life is fine thank you. My blog is based on fact, with my opinions and thoughts, and those of others through the comments. You would be amazed at the number of people who have contacted me privately - too scared to even post anonymously - now what does that tell you about Health and Social Services - you know the department that is supposed to help people - your department.
Sorry to dissappoint you but I have no 'psychological defects', (even after all I have been through this last year), obviously because of having loving, permanent relationships with family and friends and generally being a happy well adjusted person.
How can you be threatened with a higher authority such as the law, as you state? Is this your admission that your departments break the law? If you wish you are welcome to come and read my files - I'll show you all the highlights of my year.
We as a society are learning to protect ourselves and help others gain information that has been denied us for too long in Jersey. I hope that it will not be long before we establish truth and justice.
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