Young Keaton Jones must feel like a superhero right now. But will he still feel that way after the backlash?
Over the weekend, a video went viral showing Keaton's mother taping her son as he tearfully explained how he's bullied at school. He asked why some people make fun of others just because they're different:
This is Keaton Jones, he lives in Knoxville and he has a little something to say about bullying.pic.twitter.com/coyQxFp33V
— Everything TN (@Everything_TN) December 9, 2017
The video broke hearts across the Internet, with celebrities jumping in to support Keaton -- including actors from "The Walking Dead," "Stranger Things," "Star Wars," and the "Avengers," plus musicians and athletes. Keaton and his mom were even offered free tickets to the "Avengers: Infinity War" premiere, and Hailee Steinfeld asked Keaton to be her date to the upcoming "Pitch Perfect 3" premiere:
Stay strong, Keaton. Don't let them make you turn cold. I promise it gets better. While those punks at your school are deciding what kind of people they want to be in this world, how would you and your mom like to come to the Avengers premiere in LA next year? https://t.co/s1QwCQ3toi
— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) December 10, 2017
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) December 10, 2017
Keaton, will you've my guest at the Premiere of #InfinityWar too? I think you are about one of the coolest kids I have ever seen! Can't wait to meet you in person, pal. Forget those ignorant kids. One day, very soon, they are going to feel pretty stupid for this. https://t.co/BqJLxu25GN
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) December 11, 2017
— Hailee Steinfeld (@HaileeSteinfeld) December 10, 2017
Keaton-Don't waste time wondering why a bully would be so mean-They're sad people who think hurting others will make them feel better because they really don't like themselves-They're just jealous because you're so smart & handsome❤️Your friend-mh https://t.co/SUMw3OoCTm
— @HamillHimself (@HamillHimself) December 10, 2017
We hear you #KeatonJones. I was bullied constantly growing up. And could never have put into words what you have. It does get better. And it gets better because of who are and what you know and how you share it with all of us. Thank you for your courage. https://t.co/P4cCQtkAnB
— Patrick J Adams (@halfadams) December 9, 2017
Keaton, this is so accurate. Why do people do this? I think your sooo cool Keaton! I wanna be your friend ( but srsly) ur freakin awesome ❤️ https://t.co/LD7Q762bL9
— Millie Bobby Brown (@milliebbrown) December 9, 2017
Hey #KeatonJones Just saw your video about the tough time you're going through. Not sure if you're a Walking Dead fan but if it happens that you are then please be in touch as I would love to see you and your family @WalkrStalkrCon show in Nashville next year. On me. X
— Tom Payne (@justanactor) December 10, 2017
My dude. Lotta folks got your back. Me included. I'll come down and have a chat with anybody getting on your nerves. You're awesome my man. Be strong. Always. You will win because you are the better man. Believe that. Xojd
— Jeffrey Dean Morgan (@JDMorgan) December 10, 2017
If anyone knows how I can send something to Keaton... find a way to let me know. Have some stuff I'd like to send him. I've looked at some of these responses to his video.... very awesome. All of you. Xojd
— Jeffrey Dean Morgan (@JDMorgan) December 11, 2017
So I got the chance to spend the day with my new best bud Keaton. It was unbelievable to get to know him and realize that we have a lot in common. This dude is very special and has changed my life forever. Now I have the little brother I always wanted! God bless you my man pic.twitter.com/vMHVtnf2rC
— Jarrett Guarantano✞ (@BroadwayJay2) December 11, 2017
— Terrence K. Williams (@w_terrence) December 11, 2017
????Now more than ever the tone has been set that it's ok and even effective to bully????This ain't the old school bullying either: it continues at home & on SOCIAL MEDIA. Children????????are ????????committing ????????suicide????????
They need compassion, inclusion & protection???????? pic.twitter.com/iQTzKCCZkZ
— Holly Robinson Peete (@hollyrpeete) December 11, 2017
Listen to Justin Bieber's heartfelt message on Instagram for #KeatonJones who was bullied. Keaton's message has now gone viral bringing awareness across the world. #StandwithKeatonpic.twitter.com/3TvlKQfkc4
— Glitter Magazine (@glittermagazine) December 11, 2017
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) December 10, 2017
— DirtDogDad (@DirtDogDad) December 11, 2017
It's good to see so many influential people speak up against bullying. Obviously Keaton isn't the only bullied child in the country, or the world, but he stood in for so many others. Some fans used the #StandWithKeaton hashtag to share other stories of bullying to make this more inclusive, beyond Keaton, and try to use it to create actual change in schools.
A child shouldn't have to make a video on bullying go viral for us to pay attention. This happens every day in schools. Adults ignore the signs. We have to be better, do more for kids like Keaton Jones.
Thank you Keaton. Amazing person! ☺ #StandWithKeaton
— Nicki ???? (@nickiknowsnada) December 11, 2017
After the video went viral, questions came out about Keaton's family's background, and allegations about what Keaton might've said to the kids who bullied him. Basically, the conversation is broadening to a bigger picture, which can only be a good thing -- as long as it sticks with facts instead of assumptions, and we all remember that kids aren't responsible for their parents' actions.
We can't start qualifying our anti bullying stance on politics or character of parents - I mean, how is that anything other than more bullying. Kids don't choose their parents or circumstances.
— Hend Amry (@LibyaLiberty) December 11, 2017
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