I find it ironic that as we continue the battle against bullying in schools and amongst the A-list, it is in that very same cultural sphere that people use their cause as their weapon.
Although I often disagree with comments made in the media, I more firmly believe that it isn't my place to call someone out for their opinion. In making a spectacle over someone else's words, aren't we proliferating issues that we're trying to eradicate -- name-calling, bullying and so on? It's backwards to me that people lash out at someone for making a comment while simultaneously handing out a verbal beating of their own.
A current example of this peculiar mentality is this Giuliana Rancic spectacle over her comment on another celebrity's hair (Oscars, 2015). As a seasoned television producer and on-air commentator myself, I know how those situations arise and unfold; everyone is encouraged to express a different stance to captivate the audience and make the dialogue interesting. You end up saying things merely to articulate a different point of view. Half of the time, it's not even your own genuine thoughts and can lead to cringe-worthy moments. Attempts to add humor can fail miserably (as in this case).
Sadly, political correct statements aren't always at the forefront of a TV host's mind and mistakes happen.
I repeat, mistakes happen.
I am not in any way defending people who express racial, hurtful or ignorant comments. I'm simply holding a mirror up to those in society who then attack them as a result. It's fighting a cause by using the very root of it in a negative way.
Kudos to victimized parties for standing up for themselves. But isn't that where the dialogue should end? Why does it then take a nasty, snarky village of haters to slander someone like Giuliana (and countless others who have been in her position)? All of a sudden people feel justified in commenting on her weight and her appearance -- everything from calling her an alien to ripping apart her body size.
As parents we teach our kids about freedom of speech, name-calling and sticking up for peers. But often times, I witness adults fighting others' battles in an abusive way. What kind of example does this set? Grown adults take to social media and Twitter or Facebook to send mean messages about what someone said. Often these slanderous comments take the original point out of context. Hate-mongering results and people inevitably take sides and gang up.
We're bullying to stop bullying.
Being married to a TV host, I see this happen more often that I'd like to admit. A quick, off-the-cuff comment is taken verbatim by viewers or listeners, many of whom then make hurtful, snide remarks in return.
It is an immature, vicious cycle perpetuated by adults who know better.
And here we somehow still sit hailing "Pink Shirt Day," in attempt to encourage kids to be open to differences and not pick on others.
We're bullying to stop bullying. It just makes no sense.
If you don't like what someone says or thinks, just move on. Once people stop getting attention for saying ridiculous things, there's a chance that making those thoughtless comments will lose its appeal.
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