For the month of May I will be running this column on Wednesdays. The idea of this column is to discuss a reason that I believe Star Wars still matters in our community.
There are many reasons that Star Wars still matters in our world today and while I will only discuss a few of them please feel free to let us know the reasons you think it still matters.
Reason #1: Bullying
Over the past couple of years the wave of bullying in and around school age children has sky rocketed. It has gone up so much there are now no tolerance rules for bullying in schools. These rules have also begun to encompass cyber bullying as well.
The picture above is of a little girl named Katie. Her bullying story while not the first in existence was one of the ones that really got the Star Wars community behind the anti bullying movement. I personally believe there were a few reasons for this.
1. She was exactly that, a “she”, and a very young “she” at that
2. She is a Star Wars fan and her reasons for being bullied were because of her fandom
I actually think her story was a great catalyst for a very large fan community to come together and help fight the world of bullying. Bullying does many things but the most damaging thing it does is destroy one’s self esteem. There is nothing more important than that. Once a person’s self esteem has been damaged the fight to build up that self esteem can be astronomically difficult.
I know that when I heard her story I wanted to save her from some of the pain and agony I had gone through as a child. There is no reason for someone that young to ever have to go through something like that.
Katie has come out on top and now Wear Star Wars Share Star Wars Day has become a thing that the community pulls together to accomplish.
So why is anti bullying so important to Star Wars?
This is very simple. Star Wars has one of the biggest fan communities out there and regardless of if you are a boy or a girl Star Wars fans get picked on. Even in today’s society where geek and nerd culture seems to be more accepted it does not erase the bullying that still occurs. If there is any community out there that can come together to protect their youth from getting bullied it IS Star Wars. The thing about bullying though is that it is not just about protecting the youth in our community there are adults that have to deal with this too.
Many Star Wars fans young and old have to deal with some kind of discrimination whether it be from the cashier at the store ringing up all the toys and proceeds to ask “so who are these for your son?” or just gives you a dirty look because you are so excited. How about the person on the street that asks you “why do you have a star wars shirt on? those movies suck!” and then there is the person that asks you what your favorite movie is and you say Star Wars and they respond back with “why don’t you have a favorite grown up adult movie?”
All of these things can be very damaging. The more we talk about it and fight it and the more we strive to make Star Wars accepted in the main stream media the more these stigmas will fall by the wayside.
I think Star Wars can play a very pivotal role but every Star Wars fan has to have the back of their fellow Star Wars fan and help to fight bullies. I can promise all Star Wars fans that no matter what I will have your back. The question is will you have mine?
May the force be with you,