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Anti-Bullying Activist Has Perfect Response To Being Shamed By A News Anchor

Patrick 9 Oct 2019

One news anchor has been the center of a hurricane of negative publicity after calling a story uploaded to Instagram by an anti-bullying activist "scary". However, the anti-bullying activist's response was perfectly calm and uplifting.

Lizzie Velásquez is an author and a passionate motivational speaker.

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Velásquez was born with a rare congenital disease which prevents her body from gaining body fat and weight, amongst other symptoms.

However, Velásquez has not let this stop her from living her life to the fullest.

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Velásquez has been a strong anti-bullying activist since a young age.

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Due to being on the receiving end of bullying and cyberbullying throughout her teenage years, she took up motivational speaking to try and highlight the damaging effect that bullying can have. She has also written a book titled, "Lizzie Beautiful: The Lizzie Velásquez Story", and has given talks all over the world.

However, when she uploaded a video to her story on Instagram, she received a truly horrible message from one news anchor.

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Fox29 anchor Jason Martinez sent Velásquez this DM in response to her story.

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As opposed to allowing the message to get to her, however, she shared the image with this positive message:

"Dear @jasonmartineztv , I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and say you didn't mean to say this directly to me. Since October is national anti-bullying awareness month, let's take this as a learning moment and remember even 'joking' like this to a friend can always end up hurting someone else. Let's do better next time. #daretobekind"

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The wonderfully uplifting response has received over 45, 000 likes and been widely shared across social media.

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Despite her positive and forgiving message, people worldwide were shocked and appalled by Jason Martinez's horrible, hurtful words — and took to his social media accounts to tell him so.

Mr. Martinez eventually took to Instagram to post an official apology for his words.

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Shortly after Martinez's message went viral, he posted this response:

He has not at present posted anything else on his social media accounts in relation to the message.

Velásquez confirmed that the two had spoken via Instagram's direct messenger, and that he had apologized, and that she had forgiven him. She added to her post of the message:

"Shortly after posting this he did reach out to apologize which I will always accept and offer forgiveness."

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However, Martinez's apology has far from quieted the public.

Other responses to his apology include:

"Actually. Your original response magnifies exactly who you are. We all see you."

"Wait...what? It was a mistake? I mistake is accidental, this was thought about, typed and sent on purpose. This IS exactly what bullying is. There is absolutely no excuse for this and this is a sorry excuse for an apology."

With some people asking for him to be fired, "Too little, too late. @FOX29philly Send him packing!!"

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Velásquez took again to Instagram to share a video titled, "Please be kind to one another".

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In the short video, she thanked the plethora of people who had messaged her supportive messages, and she also asked everyone who was taking to social media to discuss what had happened to not send any hate to Mr. Martinez or his news station.

She went on to say that she hopes that everyone can learn from this, primarily about the power of our keyboards and social media. In the video, she emphasized, "Your words have power and so [do] your keyboards so just keep that in mind when you're on social media".

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Following her unbelievably kind and forgiving remarks, the hate has stopped a little.

However, there are still those out there that are calling out Mr. Martinez for his horrific words and attitude.

It is understandable to see why people would want to call him out; a lot of us will have experienced a form of bullying or will have a friend or family member who will have experienced such a thing, and it is a uniquely horrific occurrence. However, Velásquez's wonderfully powerful words should perfectly highlight that forgiveness is so important, and publicly targeting a man and his family will not solve anything — but using it as a teaching experience moving forward might.

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It is unclear how the station will handle Martinez's situation moving forward.

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The station itself has not yet released a statement regarding the status of his job.

Velásquez spoke to Yahoo Lifestyle in order to reiterate her forgiveness of Martinez:

"There will always be someone on the other end of the screen and those few words, accidental or not, can really hurt someone. My parents raised me to believe in the power and importance of forgiveness [...] and I will forgive Mr. Martinez exactly the same."

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Velásquez's words of forgiveness and caring are particularly important today.

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Today it is so easy for people to comment on each other via the internet, as without being face-to-face with the person you are talking to/about some people can forget the impact that their words have. Her message about realizing the power in both our words and our keyboards, and their ability to shape the life of another, should not be taken lightly.

h/t: Yahoo

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