Sometimes, Twitter is a good place. It's not every day that a bullied kid shares his raw emotions about what it's like to be picked on, and his video goes mega-viral, resulting in hundreds of heartfelt messages from the biggest celebrities on the planet (including several of the Avengers). But that's what happened when Keaton Jones from Tennessee posted his message.
Of course, like all viral stories, it doesn't end there. The more we learn, the more complicated the saga becomes.
Keaton Jones' mother Kimberly shared a video of an emotional Keaton discussing the various awful ways he's been bullied at school.
“They make fun of my nose. They call me ugly. They say I have no friends,” he said. The bullies would “put milk on me and put ham down my clothes, throw bread at me.”
As Keaton described his experiences, he became more and more incredulous. A nice kid like Keaton couldn’t fathom why bullies did what they did. “Just out of curiosity,” he asked, “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. It’s not their fault.”
Keaton's video immediately went viral, and celebrities from all over took to Twitter to show their support for Keaton.
Tennessee Titans player Delanie Walker offered Keaton and his family tickets to a game and let Keaton know that he was sorry he was bullied.
Millie Bobby Brown, who plays Eleven on Stranger Things, is no stranger to facing harsh criticism from people who don't know her.
She let Keaton know she empathizes with him and relates to what he’s going through. It’s not easy being a kid at all, and when you’re massively famous like Brown is, there’s that added layer of exposure and pressure.
The #StandWithKeaton hashtag took off, and celebs like Demi Lovato reached out to Keaton.
The outpouring of love and support from celebrities just reinforces how important the issue of bullying is — it’s a pervasive and destructive force that many kids unfortunately face.
Keaton's sister Lakyn started fielding messages because the response was so huge.
True Grit and Pitch Perfect 2 actor Hailee Steinfeld made a video for Keaton. “I just wanted to say I think you are amazing, and what makes you so special is that there is only one you,” she said. “And I would love for you, Keaton Jones, to be my date to the Pitch Perfect 3 premiere.”
It’s safe to say that Keaton Jones is learning there is a lot more love in this world than hate.
But the celebrity support and offers weren’t remotely done flying in yet…