Words Speak Louder Than Actions


An illustration of a cosplayer reading hate comments after posting a video of themself in uniform. Despite these comments being online, it’s affecting the person in real life.

Video games, VSCO girls, clothes, dance moves, and enjoying one another is all something we did as humans, but when Covid-19 had begun, there was an influx of hate and judgment. There used to be dancing, there were colorful trends, cosplays, drawings, you name it. Everyone went with the flow, but most importantly? We never judged one another, and we just went on with our lives.

So why is it so different now? Why has it become more and more common to bash on people’s interests, and even purposefully being mean to others just based on what that unfortunate person is interested in?

Back in 2020, it was practically the year of the cosplayers. Everywhere on your feed page, your social media, and even in real life, there were cosplayers. Cosplayers did dance moves, they lip synced to audios, and people during that time ate it up. Now suddenly, in 2022, they’re never on your feed, and anytime that they are? People bully them and call that cosplayer weird, even though they used to be so adored.

I believe it’s because being mean has become popular, and seen as a “cool” personality trait. In reality, it’s also that anger feels so good. According to officials, anger is triggered by a feeling of insecurity or weakness. So, whenever someone sees something enjoying a subject they love? They will tear that person down, rip them apart, laugh in their face. Because it feels good, and they feel empowered.

Anger releases dopamine in the brain, like drugs would. It makes people overwhelmed in their own skin, to the point that they just crack, and it feels good to let out the anger at someone. Someone that isn’t themselves, because it feels better to release their internal anger at someone else than dealing with it themselves.

Liking a video game that has a problematic history is one of the main reasons why people are bashed for something they enjoy. It’s embarrassing to admit now, even though two years ago I would’ve proudly admitted it, but I like characters in “Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair”. It’s been my special interest for almost four years now, and the series used to be adored. Of course, the fandom became extremely toxic, and became popularly known to hate on it. However, sometimes whenever something is revealed to be problematic? People won’t lose interest immediately- that was the case for me.

Special interests are developed by individuals that are neurodivergent. A special interest is whenever an individual expresses an intense focus on some specific source; it may be crocheting, it might be swimming; or, it might be a specific character. Special interests vary with multiple people, hence why I struggle letting go of characters, therefore not losing interest, or being able to drop the characters I love most. Neurodivergent people tend to be judged a lot as well, especially whenever their source is problematic- but, we can’t help it. I wish I could just throw it in the dust, burn it, scream at it to leave me alone, but I can’t. 

I just can’t, it’s something I’ve been judged for my whole life, even by my mom and my family. And it’s because of society today, that I’m ashamed to feel this way. I’m ashamed to still like these two characters from a video game, because that’s just such a problem to people. I’m still ashamed to be myself.

At the end of the day, I’m still me. I look in the mirror and see my reflection, I’m still staring at myself. And that’s how it should be everywhere. No matter how much we judge and hate others, hate the world, and judge ourselves? We are still human, we still have the same flesh, and we’re still living in the same world, trying to get by.

I believe that it is possible to change the amount of hate in this world. I believe that it’s possible for meaner people to become nicer, and I believe it’s possible for me to become nicer. But we have to try- as long as we try, I genuinely do think that opinions can change, and hopefully change for the better, because opinions being forced on someone hatefully hurts, and we as people who involve ourselves in social media need to change that, so people like myself don’t feel pressured to hide what they’re passionate about.