I woke up this morning to a very heartbreaking story. When I logged into Twitter, I found a tweet from Chris Stuckman about Logan Paul. He is a very popular YouTube star that made a vile video. As I understand it, while on vacation in Japan, Logan Paul and his friends decided to visit a forest where many people commit suicide. He wanted to see if it was haunted. While there, he and his friends came across the body of person who had committed suicide earlier that day. Apparently, he called out to the person, cracked jokes, and showed a purple hand. This whole thing breaks my heart.
Suicide is the third leading cause of death in young people; once every 15 minutes someone takes their own life. His primary demographic is our youth, those who are at their most impressionable. I am baffled by the idea of such disrespect for the sanctity of life, the dignity of that person, and empathy for the loved ones that person left behind. How could a person film, edit, and post such a video? Who are the friends with him that encouraged this? Who are the family members that raised a person who thinks this okay?
Logan Paul is very popular, he has a platform. If he wants to advocate for better mental health and prevent suicide, illuminating the issue with a victim is not helpful or productive. This makes those of us who have first and second hand experience with mental illness angry and concerned. I am concerned about the children and teens who watch his channel, listen to his music, and watch his movies.
Although the video had the suicide prevention hotline phone number in the description box and YouTube has taken it down since the large outcry on social media. But this isn’t enough. YouTube needs to demonetize, people need to unsubscribe, parents need to control access to his content, and companies need to pull him from their payroll. He should spend some time with people with those who are suicidal. He needs to spend time with the families and friends of the people left behind after suicide. Logan Paul needs to spend some time reflecting on the choice has has made and the emotional consequences of those choices. I do believe this punishment should be temporary and not indefinite. Once he’s grown on this issue, we should all find forgiveness in our hearts and encourage his creativity.
If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide or engaging in self harm, please call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255.