According to the dictionary, a bystander is a person who is present at an event or incident but does not take part. What you need to be is the total opposite, an ally.
We’re gonna jump right in it: when it comes to saying the n-word, if you are white you should just shut your mouth. Thinking you even have the right to say that makes me want to throw up in my mouth. Our race abused the rights of the entire black community for centuries and you think it’s okay to keep going? Shut up and sit your ass back down. When you hear something that shouldn’t be said like the n-word, just say it straight up, you shouldn’t say that, or look at them dead into the eyes and give them the dirtiest look, just do anything that will let them know that they should have not said that. And guess what, if you don’t say anything and let it slide you are just as disgusting. Call them out, that’s the only way people question what they did.
The simplest reaction to a statement will make someone doubt everything. Trust me, I like to call people out and I’ve been called out before. I have made mistakes, I’m not perfect. Nobody is perfect and we are all evolving but how can we do that if we don’t question what is right from wrong. The only thing you have to do is to not be silent. And I know that is hard because you might be a victim of the bystander effect which is, according to Psychology Today, when the presence of others discourages an individual from intervening in an emergency situation.
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You DO NOT need to be confrontational! You can simply start having a conversation about it. Ask questions to understand their point of view and make them think it through… That way, you are giving them a chance to backtrack or be 100% sure they stand by that point.
When you hear a girl trash-talking another girl for starting to date your friend’s ex, stop her right there. She and her ex didn’t work out and that’s just how life is. Don’t let her trash his new girl because she has self-confidence issues. If he dumped her then yeah, it’s gonna suck but the new girl has nothing to do with it, her ex made his decision. And if she is the one who broke up, girl, don’t even start talking shit because I will put you right back in your place.
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All of that goes with people who say: “I don’t like what she is doing, but she is still my friend,” or “I would say something, but she and I aren’t really friends.” Stop coming up with excuses. When you don’t do anything, as I said, you are just as bad as the person doing/saying the bad thing.
Don’t do to others what you don’t want people to do to you. Plain and simple.