Earlier in December, a video of a young boy went viral for heartbreaking reasons. A young man named Keaton Jones sat crying in his mother's car, discussing what it's like to be bullied at school. The video quickly gained a lot of attention online, receiving responses and support from celebrities and regular civilians alike. Selena Gomez's video for Keaton Jones has a really powerful message in it, and is something we should all keep in mind.
In Jones' video, he asks through tears,
Just out of curiosity, why do they bully? What's the point of it? Why do you find joy in taking innocent people, and finding a way to be mean to them? It's not OK.
People that are different don't need to be criticized about it, 'cause it's not their fault. But, if you are made fun of, just don't let it bother you. Stay strong, I guess. It's hard, but, it'll probably get better one day.
Jones also claims kids at school threw milk, ham, and bread on him and his clothing. He also claims they made fun of his nose and called him ugly.
It's a tough video to watch, and also all too common of an occurrence in schools across the nation.
Quickly after the video went viral, a few real-life heroes reached out to Jones. Captain America actor, Chris Evans, sent out the following message on Twitter:
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?
Mark Ruffalo, who stars in Hulk, also jumped in:
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.
Demi Lovato, Hailee Steinfeld, and Justin Bieber also sent out their own messages of support, along with professional athletes and other actors.
Now, Selena Gomez is joining in.
In her video message, Gomez addressed Jones directly and reminded him to stay strong.
Hey Keaton, it's Selena Gomez. I saw your video and it completely broke my heart but I want to remind you how courageous that was. I thought what you said was real and genuine. I think you're a very brave young boy to go through that and you don't realize it yet, but you're going to help a lot of other people who are feeling the same way. I'm encouraging you and I'm cheering you on. Just know, L.A. loves you a lot.
Check out the video.
Since Jones' growing popularity, controversy has broken out over his mother's reported actions. Kimberly Jones is the woman behind the video camera and has gained her own attention for a post she reportedly wrote on Facebook in August. In the post, she shared images of her family holding confederate flags and used the phrase "butt hurt Americans."
In an interview with CBS, Kimberly discussed the photos. She said,
The only two photos — the only two photos on my entire planet that I am anywhere near a Confederate flag. It was ironic. It was funny.
Interviewer Mark Strassman followed up, asking, "It didn't have anything to do with racist intent?"
Kimberly responded, "No. No. Absolutely not. I've said I spent most of my life being bullied and judged because I wasn't racist."
Despite his mother's actions, Jones' message remains impactful and powerful. He told CBS, "[The video] made me feel like I had accomplished something real. Something that could actually change the world."
To learn more about how you can help put an end to bullying, visit stopbullying.gov.
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