Honest to Gawd, you guys, I don’t know how many more times I can whisper-scream WTF this year. But here we are.
There is a new trend sweeping across TikTok in which rude as hell parents with zero class or empathy are recording their children’s reactions as they show them rigged FaceTime images of their new fall teachers under the hashtag #newteacherchallenge.
The rigged images are of real people with facial deformities.
Moms and dads are taking images of people with physical facial differences and telling their kids that they are doing FaceTime with their new teachers.
Then they show the child the phone’s screen — while covertly recording their reactions — to see if they can scare their kids. Then, as if it couldn’t get any more awful…these asshats upload their children’s reactions to social media.
But, one mom is determined to stop the trend because she is just as appalled as we are.
On August 16th, Alyce Chan, a New York comedian and mom of two known on TikTok and Instagram as @momcomnyc posted her own version of this hideous trend in an attempt to call it out and bring it to an end.
In her version, she “scares” her son by telling him that she’s talking to his new teacher but when he sees the image, it is of his mom.
At first glance, this is a funny response to the pandemic and lite-humored way to deal with the dread that is the 2020 academic school year.
But Chan delivers a whopper in her caption when she explains her post.
View this post on Instagram
Warning: Scary Content Joking aside, I thought of taking and alternating a trend that has gone viral to over 1m posts on social media, namely @tiktok, where parents use an image of a real person with facial differences and use it as a "funny tactic" to see their child's reaction via a pretend "facetime" meeting. . Parents would use a filter on @tiktok and upload a stranger's face – some people who are disabled and others with some sort of facial disfigurement. The hashtags #newteacherchallenge #teacherprank #teacherchallenge have flooded social media because parents and some parents who are also teachers think this is funny. This is NOT. . This teaches discrimination, bullying, segregation and sending a message to our impressionable children that it's okay to be scared and say mean things when they see someone who does not look like them. It's NOT OKAY. . As parents, we need to lead with compassion and kindness. It's the only thing we should spread especially now. Social media platforms do not see that these challenges violate comunity guidelines. And aside from me requesting these accounts to take down their posts at the risk of getting reported, I thought why not come up with a new challenge, since many of us may be homeschooling for the rest of this year, and drown out these cruel posts? . And honestly, if you're trying to scare your child, this is the way to do it; judging by my child's reaction, I think we have mutual feelings about homeschooling. . Are you with me? . . . . . #momssupportingmoms #tiktokmom #stopbullying #stopdiscrimination #kindness #spreadkindness #homeschooling #homeschoolingmom #homeschoolingjoke #teachervideos #notokay #factimeprank #teacherpranks #littlelizziev
“Joking aside, I thought of taking and alternating a trend that has gone viral to over 1m posts on social media, namely @tiktok, where parents use an image of a real person with facial differences and use it as a ‘funny tactic’ to see their child’s reaction via a pretend “facetime” meeting,”
Chan wrote on her popular Instagram account.
She went on to tell her followers that as parents we need to lead with compassion and kindness.
“Social media platforms do not see that these challenges violate community guidelines,” she writes.
“And aside from me requesting these accounts to take down their posts at the risk of getting reported, I thought why not come up with a new challenge, since many of us may be homeschooling for the rest of this year, and drown out these cruel posts?”
In one video, a father named Jim Stickler @jstickler2 yells in his daughter’s ears to scare her as she leans over to talk to her “new teacher” who she is visibly disturbed by.
The face he chose is cut off at the nose but appears to be a woman who may be suffering from addiction issues. Not funny @jstickler2.
In another Instagram post, a mom called Chastity, @_just_another_mother ironically writes in her caption,
“I’m really surprised my kids still love me after all I do to them. All she can think about is her having sharp teeth.”
The image she chose for her video appears to be of a person suffering from severe addiction and health issues.
Alyce Chan isn’t the only person online who is trying to spread the word that this new challenge is simply not ok.
Lizzie Velasquez’s (@littlelizziev) who is a well-known and inspiring motivational speaker and the author of Lizzie Beautiful: The Lizzie Velásquez Story has publicly reached out to TikTok and it’s community asking them to stop this absurd and hurtful prank.
Valesquez is uniquely qualified to speak out against this type of bullying as she has been the target of it for most her life.
She was born with a rare congenital disease called Marfanoid-progeroid lipodystrophy syndrome, which prevents her body from producing fat or gaining weight, leaving her with facial and bodily differences.
In Velasquez’s video, she says,
“If you are an adult who has a young human in your life please do not teach them that being scared of someone who doesn’t look like them is ok. Please.
Everything that these kids need to know about having empathy and being kind to one another starts at home.”
Chan agrees. She tells Filter Free Parents,
“As a mom, I give all parents the benefit of the doubt. Maybe I’m naïve or I just want to believe this but our world is falling apart but I think we can fix it,” she says.
“I think we can make it easier for our children by doing one thing – and that is to teach our them (our future leaders) to lead with compassion. If we can’t even do that, then I have no hope for mankind. And this viral challenge with over 30 million views really indicated to me that just because someone becomes a parent, that doesn’t automatically make them better.”
If you are one of the parents out there posting this kind of crap, do your kids a favor and delete it and apologize.
Then, sit your kids down and explain to them why these kinds of stupid online challenges are hurtful and that the lame excuse “it’s just a joke” doesn’t cut it.
You’re either raising assholes or you’re raising good people who know how to lead a life with empathy and compassion.