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Mark Bello
Mark Bello
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Social Media Trend Leaves Me Speechless

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It’s a disturbing trend that is sweeping the Internet.  Teens are setting themselves on fire and posting the video on social media sites.  The stunt is known as the “Fire Challenge.”  It is a dare game in which the participant voluntarily applies a flammable liquid, such as alcohol or perfume to an area of the body, lights it on fire for a few moments, and films the outcome.

I am still trying to find the reasoning behind this stunt and why would anyone ever attempt this.  Yet, in a quick search I discovered hundreds of You Tube “Fire Challenge” videos from teens all over the country.

A 14-year-old Texas teen was hospitalized for a week and a 15-year-old New York boy died after setting himself on fire. More recently, a 12-year-old girl suffered severe burns after her stomach was doused in perfume and a 15-year-old Kentucky boy suffered burns after setting his chest on fire.  When asked “What were you thinking?” the boy said, “I don’t know, I wasn’t thinking really.”  He also admitted that he never saw videos showing burned body parts as a result of the stunt.

It is time to start thinking!  Playing with fire is dangerous; the consequences can be, and quite often are, more than minor burns.  Consequences of this online trend have led to second and third-degree burns, even death.  The trauma can be more than physical; images of the fire can lead to emotional scares for life.

With hundreds of videos across social media of the stunt, parents and kids need to be aware of the real consequences of this online craze.

Mark Bello is the CEO and General Counsel of Lawsuit Financial Corporation, a pro-justice lawsuit funding company.