A young man has spoken out against those who bully him and others in a video clip that’s making waves on the Internet — and earning him a slew of famous friends. In a video posted on Facebook, Friday, by his mother, Tennessee student Keaton Jones emotionally explained how he was bullied at school.
“They make fun of my nose. They call me ugly. They say I have no friends,” Keaton told his mother in a car with tears in his eyes. He added that things even get physical at lunch, when bullies “put milk on me and put ham down my clothes, throw bread on me.”
“Just out of curiosity, why do they bully? What’s the point of it?” he asked. “Why do you find joy in taking innocent people and finding a way to be mean to them? It’s not okay.”
Keaton said he also feels for others who suffer through similar situations.
“I don’t like that they do it to me. And I, for sure, don’t like that they do it to other people, cause it’s not okay!” he told his mother. “People that are different don’t need to be criticized about it. It’s not their fault.”
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
Alongside the emotional video, Keaton’s mother, Kimberly Jones, wrote, “For the record, Keaton asked to do this AFTER he had he me pick him up AGAIN because he was afraid to go to lunch.”
“My kids are by no stretch perfect, & at home, he’s as all boy as they come, but by all accounts he’s good at school,” wrote Kimberly.”Talk to your kids. I’ve even had friends of mine tell me they’re kids were only nice to him to get him to mess with people. We all know how it feels to want to belong, but only a select few know how it really feels not to belong anywhere.”
Keaton’s message went viral, catching the attention of several celebrities who wanted to reach out and offer their support.
“Keaton, this is so accurate,” wrote Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown on Twitter. “Why do people do this? I think your sooo cool Keaton! I wanna be your friend ( but srsly) ur freakin awesome.”
Oscar-winner Patricia Arquette added, “Keaton, I’m sorry those kids are being so mean. Unless people like that change they will end up having unhappy lives. I think you’re cool!”
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
Keaton, I’m sorry those kids are being so mean. Unless people like that change they will end up having unhappy lives. I think you’re cool!
— Patricia Arquette (@PattyArquette) December 9, 2017
I #StandwithKeaton. Keaton baby, just know you’re not alone. There are so many people who come out of bullying so much stronger and you will be one of them!! God bless you sweetheart. https://t.co/LdCAy2lDHu
— Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) December 11, 2017
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
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) December 10, 2017
— Ryan Seacrest (@RyanSeacrest) December 10, 2017
— Hailee Steinfeld (@HaileeSteinfeld) December 10, 2017
You are the MAN #KeatonJones. That video is powerful and correct. Bullying is not okay. ✊🏾
— terrycrews (@terrycrews) December 11, 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
I would love to come meet this guy and provide bodyguard services!!!Connect me as well!!!! Bullies suck!! I won’t stand for it! https://t.co/8IAdTC7Smm
— Paige VanZant (@PaigeVanzantUFC) December 10, 2017
— Cole Swindell (@coleswindell) December 10, 2017
I’m your friend, Keaton Jones. You’re a more intelligent and more compassionate human being than any of the people bullying you. I’m inspired by you and things will get better because you are speaking out. Love and strength to you, dude!
— Will Poulter (@PoulterWill) December 10, 2017
Meet Keaton Jones a very smart little boy who is being bullied at school. This video is heartbreaking!! I want to bring Keaton to Vegas and hang out at UFC Headquarters. If anyone knows how i can reach the family please let me know. Thank u everyone pic.twitter.com/BR8c4ldDFc
— Dana White (@danawhite) December 10, 2017
Hey, #KeatonJones – you have friends here at the UFC, buddy. Today and everyday. #StandWithKeaton @Lakyn_Jones | @DC_MMA @TWooodley @FelderPaul @SugaRashadEvans @KennyFlorian pic.twitter.com/ZxX0cY1bu7
— UFC (@ufc) December 10, 2017
Keaton- hang in there. Keep studying and never lose sight of your dreams. I was bullied and called fat. It gets better. Your bullies have been hurt somehow and that is why they need to hurt. They will fade away. Adventure is out there. #Keatonjones https://t.co/r5pENrI9f3
— Ed Asner (@TheOnlyEdAsner) December 10, 2017
— Delanie walker (@delaniewalker82) December 9, 2017
— Bernard Blake (@BamBam_Blake23) December 10, 2017
@Lakyn_Jones Hello, Keaton (via your sister)! You may have heard of my parents, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (#MLK) and #CorettaScottKing. I try to honor them and their legacies. I’m so sorry about the pain you’re experiencing because of bullying. You matter. I love you.
— Be A King (@BerniceKing) December 9, 2017
Keaton Jones. You sweet soul. You sweet, beautiful soul. You are perfect just as you are. Inspiring and brave. Courageous.❤️ Loved beyond measure. https://t.co/M7XHyxyKQL
— Jaimie Alexander (@JaimieAlexander) December 10, 2017
Cardi B also stood up for Keaton, writing on Instagram, “Who ever goes to this boy school, If you pick on him you not even a bully YOU A STRAIGHT UP P— A— PUNK A— B—-,” she wrote. “Like how you pick on somebody who can’t defend them self ? THATS NOT GANGSTA !”
UFC President Dana White also took notice, saying that he wanted to bring Keaton to Las Vegas to hang out at UFC headquarters. The message was reposted on Instagram by Ricky Martin.
Many other athletes, actors, and well-known figures, including Martin Luther King Jr.’s daughter Bernice, also sent messages of support on social media.
“Friends, overwhelmed is the understatement of the world right now,” Keaton’s mother, Kimberly, wrote on Facebook Saturday afternoon. “I’m humbled by the voice my boy has been given, but he’s still just a little boy & he’s a little boy who desperately wants acceptance, that I have to try to find a way to navigate him through the difference in true acceptance & attention.”