View this post on Instagram
Walking Dead actor Daniel Newman has posted a video on social media responding to accusations of “hypocrisy”. In the clip, the bisexual star shows off the (rather small) amount of flab on his belly, his wrinkles, and receding hairline, and says he loves himself despite having what some may view as imperfections.
— DanielNewmaη (@DanielNewman) September 6, 2020
He made the video after tweets went viral over the weekend accusing him of hypocrisy.
Here’s the brief background: Newman, 39, has been a vocal supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement. He has attended several rallies and used his platform to highlight black voices. On Friday, he told followers to look at their friendship groups and question whether they are diverse or not.
“If you have depth, your “clique” or “tribe” will almost never look like you. Don’t sweat it when your peers reject you. Close your eyes and look for people with the same goals and interests, not the same body type (skin, color, body type, ethnicity, gender, sexuality) #diversity,” he said.
Therefore, when he posted a photo of himself at a party a few hours later, which appeared to be populated almost exclusively by hot, white, muscle dudes, Twitter had a field day.
just delete your account dude pic.twitter.com/301ynar3Z1
— tired 🤠 (@attemptingbutch) September 5, 2020
Besides raising issues around diversity and white privilege, other commentators took exception to the fact that the gathering was taking place during a pandemic. Despite Newman claiming everyone attending had “tested negative multiple times,” there was scant evidence from the photos posted of mask-wearing or social distancing.
The event he attended took place near Tulum, on the coast of Quintana Roo, Mexico. Newman swiftly deleted all the photos he had uploaded to social media showing the party.
Instead, he posted his body positivity message to his Twitter and Instagram on Saturday night.
“I love my body,” he begins, demonstrating his belly and wrinkles. “I’m showing you this because we as a culture are dealing so much with body shaming, feeling insecure, and I just tripped up and all of the trolls are on me now. And I’m not doing anything with the trolls. I get it, you’re doing your job, you get paid to start drama and sell it to news outlets…
“But for the people out there that are really affected by this, I want to say two things,” he continues. “Love yourself … I meant it when I said about diversity and being yourself and having a friend group that’s diverse.
“And then I also own it, you know, my family’s half black, and Latin … and I own it that five hours after posting about diversity, a friend of mine invited me down to a birthday event … I had no idea what the crowd was going to be like. All tested negative. But they’re all fit. They’re all jocks, so I was laughing along too.
“Then I posted a photo, you know, of a bunch of fit people. So, I got dragged for it,” the actor concedes.
“They were like, ‘Oh, that’s so diverse, blah-de-blah.’,” Newman says. “But look. I’m not talking to the trolls. I’m talking to you guys. I’m at the front of Black Lives Matter protests, I’m working for – volunteering – and it is so important that we love our bodies the way we are: Black, white, super white, albino, straight, gay.
“I’ve had bullies my entire life,” he continues. “Especially trying to do modeling and acting, telling me, ‘Oh, redheads are ugly, you’re never going to work, you’re too fat, you’re too skinny…” He shrugs: “I’m happy, and I want you guys to be happy with who you are and celebrate everyone’s diversity and equality. And I always stand for that. So sorry if you guys heard any drama, but, that’s it. I love you so much.”
The video was not enough to appease some.
He saw the crowd, saw that everyone looked like a grindr ad, and still posted a pic of it. His right to do so. But instead of apologizing to his fans and the brown “half” of his family, he makes this about loving your body.
— Notary Phillipse (@NotaryPhillipse) September 6, 2020
However, many others thanked him for talking about body positivity.
You don’t have an idea how much your video helped me. And at the time you show us you are as human as us, not a celebrity who is walking on the red carpet that make us feel different. Thank Daniel so much for being such a great person!!! Hugs from 🇦🇷👏👏🤗🤗😘😘
— Osky Ceballos😷 (@Oskyrosario2912) September 6, 2020
It’s also led to at least one (actually quite funny) parody, which has also gone viral.
i am sorry for my super diverse private island negative test pool party photo
i am learning and growing ❤️ pic.twitter.com/YPnP5vJjGL
— chase (@cfree94) September 6, 2020