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This Deaf High School Student’s Reaction to His Bullies Is So Inspiring

alex hernandez

via Scary Mommy

When a new school year starts, we all automatically think about that sweet smell of school supplies, and the fact that you can pee in privacy now that you’re kids are back in the classroom. Unfortunately, however, it also means bullying starts again. For one high schooler, the bullying started especially early.

Alex Hernandez, who is now 16, has been deaf since he was 1-year-old. Sadly, some jerks at his school thought it’d be an amazing idea to dump the contents of his book bag in the toilet (like the turds they are). This included his school supplies, tablet computer, debit card, an English project he was working on, and a battery for the cochlear implant he needs in order to hear. This all happened while Alex was getting his lunch in the cafeteria.

What makes me want to cry is the fact that Alex is used to being teased about his deafness, which he explained to KMTV:

“Those students think it’s okay to bully a deaf student, but it’s not. It’s not okay to bully someone who is disabled, deaf or hard of hearing. Or anyone for that matter. I work really hard on my project and homework because I just want to make my mom to be happy and know that I did a good job on the homework.”

As someone who was bullied in school myself (largely elementary and middle school…because you know, listening to The Cure and writing poetry and wearing all black is not exactly cool in many places when you’re 12), this makes me furious. It’s a completely insensitive and psychologically awful thing to do to someone, especially because of their disability. We need to teach kids that difference is beautiful, not something ugly–or to be feared.

Luckily, the security camera footage showed two male students took the backpack–and they have now been identified. Hernandez apparently didn’t know either of them. According to Alex’s mother, the boys didn’t know Hernandez was deaf–as if somehow that makes it better. As of now, one student has been suspended, and the other is still under investigation.

Despite this, Alex is being the bigger person and doesn’t want to get revenge–he just wanted to be understood–and to raise awareness about the effects of bullying:

“I just want to talk to them; I don’t want to fight them,” Hernandez said. “I want to talk it out. And talk to their parents about them so they can tell them they need to teach them the right thing to do.”

His mother, however, is planning on filing a police report, while kindhearted classmates set up a Go Fund Me page to raise money to replace the lost supplies. Alex responded by saying how much it meant to him:

“I wanted to thank all of my friends and those who wrote me for supporting me. I am very happy. It made me feel like I am not alone.”

No one ever is truly alone–we should all remember this through our tough times.


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