October 31, 2016

The Sociology of Calling Other People Stupid

Peter kaufman 2014By Peter Kaufman

Accusations of people acting stupidly or being stupid have been common in the news lately. Donald Trump has been called “too stupid” for U. S. voters and his supporters are often accused of stupidity for believing things that are “demonstrably wrong or idiotic.” Hillary Clinton has been called the “stupidest person” for setting up a private e-mail address and using it for work. And Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that if protesters like Colin Kaepernick “want to be stupid” then that’s their decision (she later expressed regret for this comment).

These are just some of the high profile examples of people using the term “stupidity” to evaluate the decisions and actions of others. In the course of our everyday lives, most of us probably hear the words stupid and stupidity multiple times a day. We invoke these terms not only to define people and their actions, but also to describe situations that we find frustrating or annoying: that stupid ATM machine ate my card; this stupid cell-phone battery doesn’t even last a whole day; or our school has the stupidest dress-code policy.

The simple definition of stupid is to be unintelligent and to have or show a lack of ability to learn and understand things. To be stupid is to not be sensible or logical. Building on this definition, stupidity is defined as acting in an unintelligent manner or making decisions that lack reason or are uninformed.

As these definitions suggest, being stupid or demonstrating stupidity are most often used in response to the actions or decisions of individuals. When we refer to objects, institutions, laws, and customs as stupid, this process is known as reification—attributing human qualities to non-human things. Although we might be able use sociological theories such as McDonaldization to explain the stupidity of an ATM machine eating your debit card, for the purposes of this post I am interested in analyzing the strategies of social interaction that may be at play when we describe others as stupid.

Calling people stupid or pointing out their stupidity are generally recognized as acts of condescending judgment. We disapprove of what others did, why they did it, or even how they did it, and so we call them or their actions stupid as a way to reflect our disbelief or disgust. In this sense, the act of naming the behavior of others as stupid is a simple way to vent frustration and express displeasure.

But calling someone stupid is not just a mechanism for psychic or psychological relief. Although we may feel better or even superior when we lash out like this, it may not be the only reason we do it. There may also be underlying sociological components at work here. A possible explanation is that calling someone stupid is an attempt to reinforce the boundaries of group norms and solidify our social (or collective) identities.

If you think about it, one of the underlying sentiments we are suggesting when we call someone stupid is: “Why can’t you just act like the rest of us?” We are shocked that others could act so unintelligently because these actions fall outside the expectations of normative behavior. It is hard for us to understand how someone could act this way when everyone else, or at least most of us “normal” folks, does not engage in these sorts of uninformed thoughtless actions.      

In addition to identifying norm-breaking behavior, categorizing others as stupid might also be an attempt to secure our social or collective identities. Calling someone stupid is no doubt often understood as a patronizing insult; however, it can also be a not-so-subtle plea to bring someone back into the fold of the social group. The underlying sentiment, “why can’t you just act like the rest of us,” also may contain within it an expression of concern. If someone with whom we align ourselves is acting stupidly, then our collective identity is potentially soiled and threatened by their actions.

We can see these sociological themes playing out today in the political arena. Consider the example of Donald Trump’s supporters being called stupid. We often hear this sentiment expressed when Trump’s supporters defend the presidential candidate by making uninformed comments about Blacks, Muslims, Jews, women, or about widespread voter fraud, international conspiracy theories, and immigration.

Calling Trump’s supporters stupid for making these comments may be an act of exasperation because many people find it hard to believe that someone can think these things.

However, it is also an act of desperation because there is a desire for people in this country to not believe that others could hold these views. If you feel proud to be an American, and if being an American means that you embrace things like democracy, equality, justice, freedom of religion, tolerance, and understanding, then someone who speaks against or denies these things is breaking the norms of what it means to be an American. Moreover, as fellow citizens of this country, these people are an implicit threat to your collective identity as an American.

In effect, calling Trump’s supporters stupid is a disdainful yet shorthanded way of saying: “Don’t you know what this country stands for? Don’t you understand what it means to be an American? Why are you giving the rest of us a bad name through your thoughts and actions? Please come to your senses and join us in supporting our shared American values and norms.”     

If you think the example of Trump’s supporters is unconvincing, or just plain stupid, then consider the significant relationships in your life. You probably had times when you were called, or you called someone close to you, stupid. It may have been a parent, a sibling, a significant other, or a close friend. In these instances, it is likely that the word stupid was used as way to express dismay with the actions that were taken, to correct these actions and ensure that they would not happen again, and to point out that this is unacceptable behavior for the group of which you are a part. And as further proof that calling someone close to you stupid is an attempt to reinforce norms and a solidify a collective identity, let’s not forget that the phrase “stop being so stupid” is often followed-up by “because you are embarrassing us.”

Presumably, all of us have called others stupid and have ourselves been called stupid many times over the course of our lives. Knowing that there may be sociological reasons for saying this may not make us less likely to use this phrase; however, it could help us understand that there is more to this utterance than serving as a condescending put down.

The sociological theories I offer here are just two attempts to understand the social foundations of calling someone stupid. There are certainly alternative explanations and some of these may even contradict my ideas. For example, an argument could be made that solidifying collective identities is indeed part of the equation but that we do this to reinforce the discourse of difference and not to bring others back into the flock.

Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, we have countless opportunities to analyze the sociology of calling others stupid. So the next time you are on the sending or receiving end of the label stupid think about why this word is being used, consider what deeper social functions it might serve, and try to come up with an informed, intelligent and sensible (i.e., not-stupid) explanation.

Comments

"When we refer to objects, institutions, laws, and customs as stupid, this process is known as reification — attributing human qualities to non-human things. "

>>> When we refer to objects, institutions, laws, and customs as stupid, this process is known as - DERISION

>>> ANTHROPOMORPHIZATION — attributing human qualities to non-human things. "
:)

Then there's the possibility that one calls someone stupid because they really are stupid. Being stupid is not just an insult, it's real thing for a great many people in the world. Denying that fact makes you stupid.

This article made me think of my roommate and I. We are always calling each other stupid and mocking each others actions. Makes me think about why we do it to each other?

Thank you for the excellent article... I have noticed this behavior a lot from the followers of cults. Members of some specific cults are obsessed with calling others 'stupid' and 'idiot'.If you write a post regarding this in specific that would be great.

Some people adopt a set of beliefs when it is presented in a logical way. Because of the logically arranged details and nuances present in a particular belief system, they become interested in knowing more about it regardless of how true those beliefs are.. Once they get sufficient familiarity and expertise on that belief system, they automatically start looking down at others and also start calling people as 'stupid'... This is something that I have observed. Can you elaborate on this?

It takes one to know one, does it not? Labeling someone as stupid is futile and doesn't change anything. Asking someone why they did what they did, will allow room for both understanding and correcting. Thank you for the insight.

I so, so wish that others in fields of psychology, sociology, health, mental health and science would stop using their platforms for political rhetoric and passive aggressive implications. The "media" is a different story, journalists should know better, but everyone knows they don't. Those of us in fields of science, health, support, and mentoring/teaching have a responsibility to keep the focus on the actual topic, and keep personal political opinion where it belongs (under a rock).

Stupid is as stupid does.

I think the term "ignorant" is probably a better word.
You can still be an intelligent person but ignorant to certain things in the world. There's no pill that fixes stupid. But education on a particular subject can sometimes change one's ignorance on said topic.

Cynthia said it best on Feb 9th. Thought I was the only one who picked up on the anti-political agenda and the apparent embracing if an excuse to belittle people. Those who can't have a meaningful back and forth about facts resort to insulting derogatory name calling. It's just stupid!

Being Dyslexic and been told your stupid is crushing and opens up deep wounds of childhood trauma and abuse of being called stupid when in fact they are the most original and creative souls on the planet,,,,,,we are not programmed robots that fit in with the flock.

This article was very interesting but it did not explain the situation I am trying to understand. I am regularly called stupid by an older family member who tries to control my life and the family business. Calling people stupid to assert superiority doesn't seem like trying to preserve social norms or expressing disapproval. It seems like an act of jealousy or insecurity. What I would like to know is whether this person calls me stupid because she believes it is true or if she is aware of her real motives for putting me down.

It usually occurs when she interrupts me while I am speaking to give a condescending explanation of a word I used or if she explains common words and phrases to me while I am watching tv. When I say that I do not need help understanding basic things or, she gets aggressive amd calls me stupid in addition tp diagnosing me with mental illnesses that she associates with intellectual inferiority.

I believe this person acts out of a certain ignorance or poor memory, but it bothers me to be in an environment where I am said or thought to be stupid and treated accordingly. Does the author or anyone else know if people really think you are stupid when they say it in a derogatory manner as a defense for patronizing behavior?

Articles like this are disappointing and are a big part of why the country is so divided. If I thought a certain group of people were as described I wouldn't care for them either. I was hoping to actually learn about something other than the writers political views. The author admits calling people stupid is an act of judgment and desperation. It seems as if he knows that people within his collective identity bubble are using this term in this context, is embarrassed and is writing an article to excuse or stop them from doing so. The article claims certain people have thier "collective identity soiled" by people with other views and ideas.
"We often hear this sentiment expressed when Trump’s supporters defend the presidential candidate by making uninformed comments about Blacks, Muslims, Jews, women...." It assumes anyone not in the collective identity are uninformed and or hold racist bigoted views. I would love to know what comments the writer claims are "uninformed" I do not support bigotry and anyone, no matter who they support, can be uninformed. This shows clear prejudice against people who don't think the same. "Calling Trump’s supporters stupid for making these comments may be an act of exasperation because many people find it hard to believe that someone can think these things" This in itself seems rather judgmental and discriminatory. It definitely LACKS any "tolerance or understanding" by assuming and reenforcing the idea that people who have different political views lack to embrace American values.. "these people are an implicit threat to your collective identity as an American" Wow, just wow
This article is NOT "Everyday Sociology" and is defending hateful views and words used against anyone you disagree with. You would have to be blind not to see the hypocrisy that I've outlined above. I feel bad for anyone that fails to recognize this. Most, would hopefully conclude, that it is wrong to do so anyway. I choose not to call people (especially people I don't know) stupid because it's a rude insult but beyond that Its a mean sprited way of dismissing someone and shows a lack of respect and communication skills... ie "shut up, you're stupid" I believe it says exactly that about the person calling people stupid. If you really want to know why people call other people stupid read any other article except for this one. I don't recommend this site as it obviously has no problem pushing personal political opinion instead of fact. There are many articles about this backed by actual research and study.

So we live in a perfect world where everyone has the same level of intelligence and stupid doesn’t exist. Got it, thanks!

>>Then there's the possibility that one calls someone stupid because they really are stupid. Being stupid is not just an insult, it's real thing for a great many people in the world. Denying that fact makes you stupid.<<

In other words: "NO U!"

Looks like someone doesn't like being called out on their BS. This is a predictable knee-jerk reaction from the likes of a person whose motives have been exposed.

>>So we live in a perfect world where everyone has the same level of intelligence and stupid doesn’t exist. Got it, thanks!<<

Nice straw-womyn, Lulu!

Calling somebody "stupid" is in itself a crude insult that shows a lack of wit and a lack of creativity. That's why I often attribute this insult to those with low intelligence themselves. I see it as nothing more than a schoolyard insult. Intelligence is not always easy to measure. Especially when you do not know someones IQ score or have any actual documentation to rigorously evaluate their intellectual capacity.

This is a great article. It was instructional seeing the varied posts, especially the ones criticizing it. Sadly I have to say that in particular the post by- Posted by: Emily | June 26, 2019 at 08:55 PM - is very stupid. It may sound like I'm kidding but it is true. Why? For one, she, like many others missed the point of this article completely. Second, the author tries to use clearly known facts to use as examples of "stupid" behavior yet many here where insulted by their use. Meaning they're the ones stupid enough to not see the verifiable stupid idea being used as an example. Herein lies the crux of the article, once both parties realize they're incapable of communicating with each other because their perceived realities are incompatible, each then believes the other to be Stupid.

There is one caveat, though, there does exist one real world with a real set of facts. Some know these facts and others for whatever reason just can't acknowledge or comprehend them, thus living in an alternate reality. These are the ones referred to as Stupid.

CORRECTION, I am responding to:

Posted by: Cindy | November 03, 2019 at 12:53 AM

Life is like a box of chocolates....

You never know when you'll end up in a stupid paradox.

No. I’m saying, “Why don’t you read a book?”

My dad has a really bad habit of calling everyone stupid when he gets mad at them. I think it bothers him that others (including myself) have had more education than he had had and it bruises his ego in some areas of his life. I know I'm not stupid because I have won many awards in both high school and college as well, and I have a great career to boot. In fact, I had to take both a written and practical licensing exam to get where I am now. No stupid person could accomplish that.

One thing my dad hates most in the world is swearing (even though he does this himself). In order to get him to stop insulting others or even yourself, what usually works is when you reply with something along the lines of "Nah, I'm not. F*** off." He'll shout at you not to swear, and I just tell him not to call me stupid and I won't.

It's worked like a charm and he hasn't called me nor anyone else stupid in months. I know many people out there will find it highly disrespectful to swear at a parent, but I find it disrespectful when parents resort to insults for no apparent reason.

As a Behavioral Therapist I will state you need to go back to the drawing board. Articles like this should be informative and not alienate any class of reader. By you bringing in your political agenda makes me question your professionalisms. You failed as a sociologist. You get a F for unrelated issues that come from your own agenda.

I thought your article was good. I think it's funny that some who commented, take it personally.

Using the definition given, my spouse IS stupid. Thus there are probably many others who are on this planet. Ron White has it correct . . . "You can't fix stupid." I have tried for more than forty years.

Damn, why did you have to subtly offend all trump supporters? Doesn’t make your content very inclusive. I definitely won’t return.

I would like to know the science, psychology and sociology of why people call others stupid. What are the reasons for doing so? What is the motivation behind calling someone stupid? What are you hoping it will achieve? And so on. So, if anyone can post some links to studies on this subject, that would be very nice.

I did read that according to a study that I very briefly read, that stupidity is a genetic trait. But don't know how much it affects people, but I think I read that despite that, people can still learn to be smart regardless of that trait, meaning that people with this trait have hope still, but it also proves that it doesn't matter much if they have it as long as they get education, they should be alright.

Now I'll be honest, the reason why I'm currently looking into this stuff is because I've been recently doing some research on what they call "the Darwin awards" eugh! That felt uncomfortable to type... Anyway, you probably know what it's about and you probably know where I'm going with this? Basically as far as i see it, it's core purpose seems to be designed primarily to practically make fun of either the deceased's or survivors actions or behavior. It's almost as if they celebrate it even, that they are very pleased that these people are either seriously injuring themselves, or killing themselves, thus "cleaning the gene pool" as they like to say.

Now, the original creator of all this claims that she is documenting all these tragedies for a practical reason, something about these stories serving as "cautionary tales" so that we all learn from all these people's faulty actions. Thus effectively justifying posting such stories online designed to deride, make fun of, mock, belittle and other negative words, towards these people. Now, in a way, I can see how it could help teaching people and showing people this stuff to prevent others from thinking about making the same mistake, however, I think that you could just write up fictional stories that are based on reality as to what could happen if you perform such actions, at least that way, it keeps real people's identity private, and not expose them to the world just so everyone can laugh at, shame and humiliate them. Of course, maybe it's more effective to show real world examples, that way, it's more impactfull.

Now personally, I think that it isn't really true that the original purpose of this is to teach people to be cautionary, though I guess it could be. But like I said previously, I really do feel that it's original intended purpose was designed so that people can mock, ridicule, condem, and just laugh at these victims of their own tragedies. But I'd have to somehow ask the creator for the real reason why it was started.

Maybe it really was made to teach us to be cautious? But even then, why is it necessary to mock, etc, these deceased or severely injured people? What purpose does it truly achieve? I need some science and psychological studies on this, I desperately want to know the benefits of making fun of these people. Because if anything, it seems to serve no function other than to make people feel good and superior to these people they are making fun of. Sure, I suppose it can be said that you indeed are superior to these people because you would never do such things, thus you feel very justified or even right to judge these people very harshly. Which I agree that it can be a good thing to judge and criticize such behavior if it helps stop others from doing it also, thus reducing death and injuries, which is very good.

However, to me, I've always seen it as a very harsh, cruel, cold, callous, apathetic, indifferent and insensitive view to hold and to think in such ways. At least the part about putting these victims personal information online and making fun of them for getting themselves killed or seriously injured. It just does not sit well with me, nor does it feel right.

Also, the creator said something about "immortalizing" these people. "Most people will be forgotten, but, if you make it on the DA, then you are forever immortalized." True, but there is a detail that she seems to have either forgotten, missed to point out, or knew about but ignored it anyway either because she doesn't truly care at all and wants to make fun of them, or just forgot to mention. That is, that being "immortalized" in the DA isn't really a good thing at all, for obvious reasons. You see, most people who are "awarded" are people who are seen in a very negative, cruel, cold, harsh, etc, light. It's definitely not an "award" that you'll ever want, as by getting one, you are automatically subject to such terrible treatment and criticism, derision, hate, etc of other people. You'll forever be seen as broken, deluded, terrible, all the bad and negative things. People will never think good things about you. They'll have no respect for you. No ounce of kindness, empathy, sympathy, compassion, all the positive stuff. No one will want to go near you, talk to you, befriend you, support you, comfort you, help you, like you, love you, and it goes on. You are effectively and practically 100% forever ostracized and exiled by the majority of people who know whatever it was you have done. Only negativity will be poured for you. You are undeserving of their kinder side. A horrible and nightmare of a fate to befall anyone. It's living hell and total isolation. Of course, the dead won't have this problem, but the survivors will surely suffer for their actions.

Just imagining being in their situation, reading people's mean comments about you, what you did, making fun of you, laughing, not a shred of empathy, sympathy or care or any supportive comments from anyone. Sure, maybe a few are around scattered about, but unfortunately, it seems that the majority aren't like that, or maybe I'm wrong and that there are actually lots of people who are kind and caring? I don't know, need some statistics. But just imagine it, the whole world deriding you, or your behavior and actions, though it seems that they also attack the individual themselves even, not just their behavior. How that would feel? Humiliating, degrading, hurtful, painful, distressing, upsetting, etc. Like no one cares about you, hates you. You would probably be experiencing feelings of worthlessness, helplessness and feelings of having no value whatsoever, because of what you did, what you have done to yourself. You would feel like an outcast, that has been discarded like rubbish. No one wants you around, or even living in this world. Perhaps some, not all, but some people out there would be devastated and sad that you managed to survive your careless act, wishing and hoping ill upon you, hoping and wishing desperately for something really fatally bad to happen to you, because in their mind, you deserve to die for what you did, you aren't deserving to live, you are a waste of space. They even mourn when you are able to still reproduce or have already done so, as in their minds, you have spread bad genes, contaminating the gene pool, that your offspring will grow up doing stupid things themselves. Except that like was pointed out earlier according to a study, people with such genes can still grow and learn to be cautious and smart. They'll make you feel defected, along with your offspring. Like something is seriously wrong with you, or your genetic coding, and just like a defective virus or plague or whatnot, you must be purged along with whatever you've created. You all are viruses that must be purged from the system, to restore normalcy.

At this point, why bother living anymore if people think of you this way? Death seems like a much more pleasing option, compared to dealing with such harshness from people. If no one will ever forgive you and always see you in a negative light, never give you a chance to be better, treat you cruelly and say unkind things to you and never receiving kindness or support of any kind, never getting a chance to socialize or join communities and participate in society. Then I truly see no value anymore in living in this world, where you are completely rejected, abandoned, ostracized and exiled by everyone. There is no longer a practical reason to live if you are on your own, uncared for, hated, etc. You can't contribute anything to the world, nor would they ever want the likes of you to contribute anything, as they see you as a stain, corrupted, etc.

To me, it feels eerily similar to cancel culture. A one and done rule. No second chances. No redemption. You mess up once, and it's game over for you, forever unable to make a recovery. Unless you are very lucky, of course, but that seems to be the exception to the rule. Your reputation forever ruined and stained, by your own hands, unable to plea for forgiveness, for help... It's worse than cancel culture even, you would have a much better chance at fixing your reputation and image with cancel culture. But with the other, I really don't know how you'd have any chance at all from recovering from such a thing. No amount of proving them or showing them that you've changed since the incident will be enough to convince them that you are better now and deserving of being treated better. You will still be seen as defective, bad, etc. At least, I'm positive about that. Unless anyone can prove me wrong, of course, but I feel that you can't.

So that's what I think and how I feel about it all. I think it's abhorrent, etc, to treat them as circus freaks. Sure, we can call out and judge and criticize bad and potentially fatalistic behavior and actions, as we should if it helps protect, prevent and stop them or others from performing such things and hurting or killing themselves. But, besides that, I think that we could be a lot more helpful and supportive of these people. The ones that survived anyway, as there's no point helping the dead.

Also, let's not forget their families and friends too. It would hurt to see everyone talking bad about your sibling or friend, even when it just recently occurred and they're grieving and mourning the loss of their family member or friend. It would be terrible. Perhaps being more considerate would be pretty good? You can still say that what they did was stupid, but you know, surely there's no need to be super cruel about it? But you probably won't listen to me anyway, will you?

Had to write it all down and vent my frustration at all of this. I feel very alone in thinking this way, but I do believe there are some others out there like me, but I think we're in the minority unfortunately, unless I'm wrong? Probably not...

Now, I expect to see comments calling me all sorts of names, name-calling, as it is, such as, "I'm being a bitch, a sensitive whiny stupid bitch, asshole or arsehole, fuckhead, dickhead, retard, etc." Whatever insult you pick. Yes, I won't like to be called such things, but that is just how the internet is. Unless, of course, you aren't like that, and are perhaps more kinder than that, I'll appreciate a nice reply, if I ever get one.

No, I don't expect anyone to agree with me on any of the points, but I'd feel like I'm not alone if you do agree with me. I know, my comment is ridiculously long, I'm just typing as I go and whatever pops into my mind. I'm sorry for this, and yes, you probably hate me for this. And yes, I know that people who make fun of these victims aren't necessarily bad people perhaps or that they are capable of kindness or empathy, but that they prefer not to give such niceness to these self inflicted victims as they may feel they don't deserve their empathy or sympathy or kindness because they deliberately put themselves in danger and are probably frustrated and angry at them for hurting or killing themselves, which I remember reading someone's comment saying that, which I guess probably explains why people don't have positive thoughts or feelings towards these people.

But I feel sympathy and empathy for them regardless even if I too know it's their fault, I just can't help but feel bad for them anyway, as I personally don't like seeing anyone hurt or killed. Surely there are others out there like me? Hopefully we're not seen as mentally Ill or whatever for feeling and thinking this way regardless of their actions, as that would make me not feel good.

It just doesn't feel right to make fun of people who injured or got themselves killed. Maybe the way they killed themselves could be funny, but still, it's definitely a tragedy and families and friends lost someone close to them, surely that's saddening?

I do believe that even the creator feels the same way and acknowledges it even in one of her quotes. Don't know what it was exactly, but she did say something like "Though it may be funny, it's still a tragedy and that this tragic loss has had an impact on close family members and friends, who are suffering from this loss." Not a direct quote, but she said something similar I'm sure. It shows, to me, that despite that she may find these deaths "funny" she still is willing to acknowledge that it is a bad and tragic thing that had happened and that it affects people close to the deceased, just like any other normal death would affect their families and friends.

So yeah, that's that I think. Again, I truly am sorry for this very long comment, but I felt the need to type it all out. It's risky though, because I could receive a nasty backlash from a lot of people, either for my stance on this topic, or for the very long comment, or both even. But, I felt like sharing an opposing view against the people who like this stuff, as it always seems one sided. A perception that everyone enjoys this, but I just wanted to show that there are people like me who don't like this stuff, so that way, it is a balanced thing.

Also, addmitingly, there are quite a lot of people who do share my views, so maybe I was wrong about before saying that I'm alone in thinking this way. Because in the YouTube comments section, while I do see those comments that I personally do not like, "the award goes to..." or "I have no sympathy for them." And a few others, I have seen people express sadness and sympathy, kindness and empathy towards these people also, such as "R.I.P to them, crying emoji heart emoji." Or "Such a terrible thing to happen, poor them." And "This is so sad." And others like that, so I'm quite wrong and that there are lot's of people who share similar values like me, so that feels good, like I'm not alone.

Also, I'm probably very wrong about before, I was probably too cynical or pessimistic and hopeless about how no one would help the ones who survived, as there would surely be many people who would be willing to help them out and support them in any way they can. They may even offer support for those who lost their family member or friend. So, it's not as bleak of an ending as I perhaps wrongly thought. Heck, who knows, maybe... Maybe, there's a slight chance that even the people who ridiculed the survivors would also be willing to help out these people also, that would be pretty cool, as we would put our differences and hate aside to come together and help out a fellow human being in need of assistance and guidance. Though, it's really hard to tell for sure if that would realistically happen, but it's a possibility. Plus, even if they might not want to help them because of their hatred towards them, they might be willing to give them a chance to better themselves and allow them to redeem themselves in whatever way they can? I'm unsure. Would need actual psychological and sociological tests and scientific data to back up such claims, so until then, I'm just guessing and speculating.

I do wonder though, how current survivors who have been registered into the award thing and have been and may continue being made fun of cope with their current lifestyle after the incident? I wonder what psychological effects have happened to them, if they are aware that they are on the internet being made fun of or anything like that? I wonder how they'd feel reading everyone's apathetic comments towards them and how it makes them feel? This is data that maybe one day, psychologists and scientists can study. Maybe if you are one of the victims, if you feel comfortable, perhaps you can help explain all this and share your experience with us. Do you shrug it all off and just continue trying to live a good life? Do you worry about it and think about it all the time? Do you feel hated by everyone? Any mental illnesses you've developed after reading the comments? Has it made you contemplate suicide? Does it feel like everyone's out to get you and mock and ridicule you whenever they get the opportunity to do so? Do you fear going out in public, worried that people will notice who you are and publicly humiliate you? I'm interested to know.

Anyway. That's all for real now. I don't expect for anyone to read my comment. But if you did, thank you and hopefully you got something worthwhile out of it, but probably not, but who knows? Now, I shall go.

Have a nice time!

This comment is in response to Timothy Aetos. I read your comment and when I was reading it I felt a connection to some of the things you were saying. I have been called " stupid" multiple times in my life and a lot of it happened in the work place because I was under pressure and I have a disability called Autism among other diagnosis but I have a lot going on with me mentally. But anyway, it started in the workplace and then now people called me that online. But I noticed it happens a lot. I am not doing anything so it must be them being cruel to me and rejecting me because I am not like them and they don't accept others who are different. They make fun of me and isolate me on purpose because I have a lot going on with me and I am disabled. I do feel that people call others "stupid" because they don't like themselves and they feel that way about themselves so they call others that. But that is what I learned from other peers and not from an article with scientific research on why it happens. I am not sure why it happens. I was only speculating and I feel that is all I have to make it through the abuse. Yes, I do agree that it would be nice to see an article telling you what causes someone to call others names. But sadly, the articles I have seen on that topic aren't credible enough for me at least. Another thing I would like to say is that some of the things you mentioned in your comment were what I have felt myself after I have been bullied and was called "stupid". I was relieved when I reading your comment because of what you mentioned. I think you mentioned that you would like to know what harm it causes someone who has been called "stupid". I hope I didn't misunderstand you but I would like to share my experience and my perspective on the matter. By being called "stupid" a lot I feel like people hate me and will never like me. I feel like people think I don't deserve kindness and see me as a threat from some reason. Maybe out of hatred and or jealousy I am not sure which or maybe both. It takes a toll on you for sure like it did with me because it happened so much. But I noticed that I never believed what people said to me and I never agreed with it and I never called myself what they called. But I was sad I had to go through it. I look back on what I did and I never thought I did anything stupid or said anything stupid. I just decided that it was all them being cruel humans like humans are. But for now, that is how I see it and always thought that it was them that were that way because they called me it and they didn't know me so for them to call me that is just wrong and it doesn't make sense. People who called me that made up things about mw that weren't true. Possibly due to the fact they were psychological projecting on to me how they feel about themselves which goes along with what I said before when I mentioned they don't like themselves. People don't know I am disabled and they still call me "stupid". But I am also bullied in other ways besides name calling. It happens constantly. Almost every day it seems and it brought up the feeling of being attacked, being judged, mocked, ridiculed, and criticized all the time by everyone I meet. It is a never ending vicious cycle. I also feel like a circus freak because I feel like that is how I am treated by others because they call me "stupid" and bully me. People isolate me on purpose I think because of what they thought of me and that is what is happening and it is because of being called that name a lot. and I did feel like everyone was out to get me. I feel the signal of someone being different screams warning to avoid someone. I feel a lot of fear because of the way I have been treated. I feel hatred, betrayal, and depression. I don't know what else to think. It makes me feel confusion. The cruelty is crippling and I see a pattern and the pattern never seems to end. I do believe that it has caused mental illness because of what happened I now go insane when I am around people and I have panic attacks. I feel like I am not safe and I feel like I am always in danger. I do feel like an animal trapped in the corner who can't escape. I don't feel human because of being bullied and called names. I do fear going out in public. I can't go out without people coming after me. I worry about it and think about it all the time. It is always in my head and it is hard to forget it. It is like I'm being bullied all over again in my own head after they aren't in my presence. I think I mentioned this already but yes, to me it feels like people are coming after me every chance they get and they are coming after me and mock and ridcule me. People notice me and have publically humiliate me and I also worry about it too. I would like to say more but I feel like it is best to end it here. I would like to connect with others on here if possible. That would be great and it would get great if I could get response to my comment. Reading the article and comments were intriguing and educational. I am glad I came on this site. Thank you so much for this article. I appreciate it because it was helpful. Bye!

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