Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral

0
207
Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral


Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral | The Star

“,”heading”:””,”fullWindow”:false,”fullBleed”:false,”showFullBleedOnMobile”:false,”headColor”:””,”type”:”html5mobile”,”textColor”:””,”mobileImageUrl”:””,”bgColor”:””,”imageUrl”:””,”registeredOnly”:false,”linkUrl”:””,”internalScroll”:false,”displayStyle”:”small-up”},{“type”:”cta”,”buttonText”:”Sign Up Now”,”buttonLink”:”/emails.html?utm_source=thestar&utm_medium=inline&utm_campaign=auto&utm_content=torontoheadlines”,”description”:”Sign up for the Star’s Morning Headlines email newsletter for a briefing of the day’s big news.”,”title”:”Get more of today’s top stories in your inbox”},{“text”:”What shouldn’t we do?“,”type”:”text”,”isParagraph”:true},{“text”:”Treat them differently or “special.” Now that’s different when it comes to accommodations: the world is not made of people of short stature, so of course, the world around us has to adapt. When we can’t reach something, we might need help. But don’t assume we need help. Always ask first. “,”type”:”text”,”isParagraph”:true},{“text”:”What is your personal message to kids and people like Quaden, who have to deal with daily bullying?“,”type”:”text”,”isParagraph”:true},{“type”:”textBreakPoint”,”insertAt”:”contentEndBreakPoint”},{“text”:”Gravitate to a core group of friends who love you for who you are. But I’ve always believed if you confront a bully straight on, they will often back down. They are weak, that’s why they are lashing out at others. Find your strength! And as I stated, everyone needs to be an upstander.”,”type”:”text”,”isParagraph”:true},{“text”:”Evelyn Kwong is a digital producer based in Toronto. Follow her on Twitter: @evystadium“,”author”:{“author”:”Evelyn Kwong”,”photo”:{“origImageSize”:”1200×800″,”lastmodified”:2700061000,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”sizes”:{“small”:”https://images.thestar.com/8hxhksYpm-CZRR45N_Xype8TG54=/114×76/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”large”:”https://images.thestar.com/xroCsJTdjmQHq8ROUaJFWt1TjQA=/328×220/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”square”:”http://wwwhive.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/This-hospital-worker-makes-70000-but-moved-back-home-for-his-mom’s-cooking.-Can-he-save-for-a-home-while-splurging-on-‘fun’.jpg”,”hero”:”https://images.thestar.com/qEC8nCycvhiQvDhv0bYrPd-IrQY=/678×432/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”}},”location”:”Toronto”,”tag”:”kwong_evelyn”,”credit”:”Toronto Star”,”twitterId”:”evystadium”,”email”:”ekwong@thestar.ca”},”authorPageUrl”:”/authors.kwong_evelyn.html”,”type”:”endnote”,”isLast”:true},{“type”:”shareBar”},{“type”:”trustbar”}],”assetTags”:[“bullying”,”dwarfism”,”human_height”,”smg_gta”,”behavior”,”quaden_bayles”,”john_young”,”social_issues”,”quaden_young”,”australian_boy”,”john_young”,”smg2_news”,”bullying”,”human_behavior”,”quotation_mark”,”dwarfism”,”midget”,”growth_disorders”,”punctuation”,”kwong_evelyn”],”seoKeywords”:”Quaden young,dwarfism,John Young,bullying,Australian boy,Quaden Bayles,smg_gta,smg2_news”,”excludeInRecommendations”:false,”promo”:[],”related”:{“pubdays”:0,”strategy”:0},”seoHead”:”Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral”,”headline”:”Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral”,”subheadline”:”Though John Young has never met Quaden, a 9-year-old Australian Aboriginal boy with dwarfism, he connected with his mother over Facebook and a relationship developed. “,”canonicalUrl”:”https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral.html”,”seoDescription”:”Though John Young has never met Quaden, a 9-year-old Australian Aboriginal boy with dwarfism, he connected with his mother over Facebook and a relationship developed. “,”storytag”:”NEW”,”publishedepoch”:1582307032494,”lastmodifiedepoch”:1582308463813,”abstractVisible”:false,”paywallMode”:”metered”,”storyuuid”:”6fa7b6d0-c6d3-41af-bf9c-4232b4b23afb”,”republish”:true,”slideshowid”:”B881052065Z.1″,”lastmodified”:”02 21 2020″,”lastreplicated”:”1:17 PM, Fri., Feb. 21, 2020″,”readtime”:4,”breadcrumbs”:[{“label”:”News”,”relurl”:”/news”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news.html”},{“label”:”GTA”,”relurl”:”/news/gta”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news/gta.html”}],”authors”:[{“author”:”Evelyn Kwong”,”photo”:{“origImageSize”:”1200×800″,”lastmodified”:2700061000,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”sizes”:{“small”:”https://images.thestar.com/8hxhksYpm-CZRR45N_Xype8TG54=/114×76/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”large”:”https://images.thestar.com/xroCsJTdjmQHq8ROUaJFWt1TjQA=/328×220/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”,”square”:”http://wwwhive.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/This-hospital-worker-makes-70000-but-moved-back-home-for-his-mom’s-cooking.-Can-he-save-for-a-home-while-splurging-on-‘fun’.jpg”,”hero”:”https://images.thestar.com/qEC8nCycvhiQvDhv0bYrPd-IrQY=/678×432/smart/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg”}},”location”:”Toronto”,”tag”:”kwong_evelyn”,”credit”:”Toronto Star”,”twitterId”:”evystadium”,”email”:”ekwong@thestar.ca”}],”numOfParagraphs”:20,”liftigImage”:{“captionPosition”:”overlay”,”fullWindowMainart”:false,”type”:”image”,”imageid”:”G5JSU98G.3″,”origImageSize”:”1200×792″,”lastmodified”:1582307761764,”forceoriginal”:false,”caption”:”Marathon runner John Young makes his way along a training route in 2018. Young was born with dwarfism, but that hasn’t stopped him from conquering multiple marathons and triathlons. “,”source”:”The Associated Press”,”credit”:”Steven Senne”,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”mainartSize”:”medium”,”renditions”:[{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/Omm9buOLKmdkDtcP-49CGaxkZYc=/93×52/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:93,”height”:52,”scalefactor”:8,”aspect”:”wide”}]},”seopublisheddate”:”2020-02-21″,”seomodifieddate”:”2020-02-21″,”primarylabel”:{“label”:”GTA”,”relurl”:”/news/gta”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news/gta.html”},”totalParas”:0,”additionalEvents”:”,event29″,”legacyArticleData”:{“mainart”:{“captionPosition”:”overlay”,”fullWindowMainart”:false,”type”:”image”,”imageid”:”G5JSU98G.3″,”origImageSize”:”1200×792″,”lastmodified”:1582307761764,”forceoriginal”:false,”caption”:”Marathon runner John Young makes his way along a training route in 2018. Young was born with dwarfism, but that hasn’t stopped him from conquering multiple marathons and triathlons. “,”source”:”The Associated Press”,”credit”:”Steven Senne”,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”renditions”:[{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/kkfVk6Oj6HQXYrzHbou7GWAZ1Uo=/1200×792/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:1200,”height”:792,”scalefactor”:100},{“url”:”http://wwwhive.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-Australian-boy-Quaden-Bayles-goes-viral.jpg”,”width”:1086,”height”:717,”scalefactor”:91},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/aGGVpR9GIXb2FkuIUES9h-d_P1k=/968×639/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:968,”height”:639,”scalefactor”:81},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/n-xY-Hk6sg2tmWosxLP_v_7pFpc=/850×561/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:850,”height”:561,”scalefactor”:71},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/TBCNdz9OS4KUVNcrlDcPt9FJxKM=/650×429/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:650,”height”:429,”scalefactor”:54},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/kahubqay4X7C9aVnmNZ2H8KAXgU=/605×399/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:605,”height”:399,”scalefactor”:50},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/NG_17hNmi8-13MEcGPRpxUYuuJ4=/480×317/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:480,”height”:317,”scalefactor”:40},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/fnoYOCaM657ppEDwFwlHjMs4_6Q=/400×264/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:400,”height”:264,”scalefactor”:33},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/rXGTrSXeosSnax6chijVqTylYK4=/320×211/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:320,”height”:211,”scalefactor”:27},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/bxfkiXvnZHWh_F6OqnRr0xe2NFM=/93×61/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:93,”height”:61,”scalefactor”:8}],”isLandscape”:true,”skip”:true},”sourceCategory”:”in-house”,”keywords”:[“oc:entities/Person/j/o/h/john_young”,”oc:socialtag/m/i/d/midget”,”oc:entities/City/t/o/r/toronto”,”oc:socialtag/s/o/c/social_issues”,”oc:socialtag/h/u/m/human_behavior”,”oc:socialtag/q/u/o/quotation_mark”,”oc:socialtag/p/u/n/punctuation”,”oc:socialtag/b/u/l/bullying”,”oc:socialtag/b/e/h/behavior”,”oc:socialtag/d/w/a/dwarfism”,”oc:socialtag/h/u/m/human_height”,”oc:socialtag/g/r/o/growth_disorders”,”ng:q/u/a/quaden_young”,”ng:d/w/a/dwarfism”,”ng:j/o/h/john_young”,”ng:b/u/l/bullying”,”ng:a/u/s/australian_boy”,”ng:q/u/a/quaden_bayles”,”ng:s/m/g/smg_gta”,”ng:s/m/g/smg2_news”],”inbrief”:[{“heading”:”KEY FACTS”,”type”:”inbrief”,”items”:[]}],”TorstarTags”:[“104″,”7″],”publisheddate”:”Fri., Feb. 21, 2020″,”lastreplicatedepoch”:1582309032536,”type”:”Story”,”body”:[{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

A video posted by the mother of a 9-year-old Quaden Bayles crying after being bullied for having dwarfism went viral Thursday evening.

What followed was an outpouring of support for the Australian Aboriginal boy, from the national Aboriginal rugby team to actor Hugh Jackman.

“},{“type”:”mainart”,”data”:{“captionPosition”:”overlay”,”fullWindowMainart”:false,”type”:”image”,”imageid”:”G5JSU98G.3″,”origImageSize”:”1200×792″,”lastmodified”:1582307761764,”forceoriginal”:false,”caption”:”Marathon runner John Young makes his way along a training route in 2018. Young was born with dwarfism, but that hasn’t stopped him from conquering multiple marathons and triathlons. “,”source”:”The Associated Press”,”credit”:”Steven Senne”,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”renditions”:[{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/kkfVk6Oj6HQXYrzHbou7GWAZ1Uo=/1200×792/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:1200,”height”:792,”scalefactor”:100},{“url”:”http://wwwhive.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-Australian-boy-Quaden-Bayles-goes-viral.jpg”,”width”:1086,”height”:717,”scalefactor”:91},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/aGGVpR9GIXb2FkuIUES9h-d_P1k=/968×639/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:968,”height”:639,”scalefactor”:81},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/n-xY-Hk6sg2tmWosxLP_v_7pFpc=/850×561/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:850,”height”:561,”scalefactor”:71},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/TBCNdz9OS4KUVNcrlDcPt9FJxKM=/650×429/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:650,”height”:429,”scalefactor”:54},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/kahubqay4X7C9aVnmNZ2H8KAXgU=/605×399/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:605,”height”:399,”scalefactor”:50},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/NG_17hNmi8-13MEcGPRpxUYuuJ4=/480×317/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:480,”height”:317,”scalefactor”:40},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/fnoYOCaM657ppEDwFwlHjMs4_6Q=/400×264/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:400,”height”:264,”scalefactor”:33},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/rXGTrSXeosSnax6chijVqTylYK4=/320×211/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:320,”height”:211,”scalefactor”:27},{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/bxfkiXvnZHWh_F6OqnRr0xe2NFM=/93×61/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:93,”height”:61,”scalefactor”:8}],”isLandscape”:true}},{“type”:”ads_below”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

But this daily bullying is no suprise for Toronto-born John Young, who also has the same type of dwarfism.

From being photographed without permission to having his image posted on social media alongside the quote “I think everyone should own a midget,” the teacher and part-time marathon runner now based in Boston is speaking up.

Though Young has never met Quaden or his mother, they’ve connected before over Facebook. When Young qualified for the Boston Marathon in 2017, he asked Quaden’s mother to send a bandana that represented the Australian Aboriginal flag for the race. “I wore it on my racebelt and have done so in a couple of other marathons as well. I wore it to try and gain some inspiration from him, as I know he has dealt with a number of physical and emotional challenges related to his dwarfism.”

“},{“type”:”ad”,”display”:”small-only”,”pos”:”1″,”sizes”:[[300,250]],”interstitial”:true,”name”:”MobileMiddleArticleBigBox”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

During the race, Quaden became Young’s inspiration. “When my body felt sore or tired, I thought of Quaden and his battles and I gained strength from him. I also hoped it showed him, that though others may think our bodies are limited in what they can do, we know the truth is, you can do anything. You just might have to do it in a different way.”

The Star reached out to John Young for an interview:

As a person with dwarfism, what don’t others know about your daily experience?

“},{“type”:”textBreakPoint”,”insertAt”:”contentMiddleBreakPoint”},{“type”:”articleRelatedInlinePrimary”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

Comments from strangers happen each and every day. I have become immune to many of them and often don’t even notice they’ve happened unless I’m with someone who points them out. Unwanted photographs occur a lot. When that happens, I deal with it directly and tell people it’s not appropriate and they need to stop. Most of the time, they run away, but sometimes, they stop and apologize.

“},{“type”:”articleRelated”,”display”:”medium-up”},{“type”:”slimcut”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

When that happens, I try and actually have a conversation with them about it. I’m always more interested in educating people than shaming them. What really upsets me though, is that some comedians think it’s still acceptable to makes jokes about people with short-stature, using words like midget, etc. The more this continues, the more likely the bullying and other jokes will continue.

Is there an instance of bullying that resonates with you to this day?

About eight years ago I was racing in the NYC Triathlon. Another competitor blogged about me after the race including pictures his wife had taken saying things like, “I think everyone should own a midget.” It was despicable. When I wrote about it, others responded. He soon removed the post and was also banned from competing in that race again. Some irony about it though, years later it was discovered that he had been competing in other marathons and ultra marathons and had been cheating in thoses races, in order to win by hiding out and taking short cuts in the races. All in all, a pretty sad person.

“},{“type”:”ad”,”display”:”small-only”,”pos”:”2″,”sizes”:[[300,250]],”interstitial”:true,”name”:”MobileMiddleBottomArticleBigBox”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

How can we all do better to support those who have dwarfism?

“},{“type”:”articleRelatedInlineSecondary”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

I think this goes to anyone you perceive as “different.” Differences should be celebrated and respected. If we were all the same, the world would be a pretty boring place. Understand that someone with dwarfism wants exactly the same things any other person wants. To be happy, healthy and safe. If you see someone with dwarfism, or any other difference being shamed or bullied, be an upstander and say something. When you hear a joke or something meant to single out and ridicule a particular group of people, speak out!

This needs to be stressed with children. Talk to them. Make sure they understand that differences are not things to be laughed at or pointed out, or even made to feel sorry for.

We are not “stricken” with, nor do we “suffer” from it. There might be complications associated with it that we have to deal with, but again, we just deal with life in a different way.

“},{“snippet”:”

View this post on Instagram

Please stop tagging me in the video of #Quaden from Australia. I’m not going to take the time to discuss whether or not the video should have been posted, and please don’t comment about that here. That is a totally different discussion. I have been connected with his mother through social media for a number of years. Quaden gave me a head band of his to first wear in the 2017 Boston Marathon. He is an amazing young warrior and I feel his pain, as do many people with dwarfism. But I’d like to take a moment to make a few points about what happened to him. This happens on a daily basis to most people with dwarfism. It appears through outward comments, jokes and gestures. It also happens through both subtle or even overt discrimination in the workplace. There is an assumption that tall=successful and strong and short=unqualified and weak. This is not going to be eliminated by money and a trip to an amusement park. He or his mother did not ask for the trip, so I am not faulting them, but I believe this is a stop-gap response. The only way to stop this type of bullying behaviour is for each and every one of us to become #UPSTANDERS instead of bystanders. When you see ANYONE being attacked for any reason, you need to speak out. And you need to teach your children to do the same. A bully will back down if they don’t have an audience. I can honestly say, that every single time this has happened to me, I have “stood up” to that person and they have backed down. Maybe the target of the attack doesn’t have the strength to do that on their own, and that’s where YOU step in. DO NOT take this as an opportunity to make statements about your ideas about parenting choices by Quaden’s mother. I’m not trying to create more bullying here. I’m just hoping we all try and do a better job caring for each other. #BetheHammer

A post shared by John Young (@dwarfparatri) on

“,”heading”:””,”fullWindow”:false,”fullBleed”:false,”showFullBleedOnMobile”:false,”headColor”:””,”type”:”html5mobile”,”textColor”:””,”mobileImageUrl”:””,”bgColor”:””,”imageUrl”:””,”registeredOnly”:false,”linkUrl”:””,”internalScroll”:false,”displayStyle”:”small-up”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

What shouldn’t we do?

“},{“type”:”cta”,”buttonText”:”Sign Up Now”,”buttonLink”:”/emails.html?utm_source=thestar&utm_medium=inline&utm_campaign=auto&utm_content=torontoheadlines”,”description”:”Sign up for the Star’s Morning Headlines email newsletter for a briefing of the day’s big news.”,”title”:”Get more of today’s top stories in your inbox”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:”

Treat them differently or “special.” Now that’s different when it comes to accommodations: the world is not made of people of short stature, so of course, the world around us has to adapt. When we can’t reach something, we might need help. But don’t assume we need help. Always ask first.

What is your personal message to kids and people like Quaden, who have to deal with daily bullying?

Gravitate to a core group of friends who love you for who you are. But I’ve always believed if you confront a bully straight on, they will often back down. They are weak, that’s why they are lashing out at others. Find your strength! And as I stated, everyone needs to be an upstander.

Evelyn Kwong is a digital producer based in Toronto. Follow her on Twitter: @evystadium

“},{“type”:”trustbar”},{“type”:”articleRelated”,”display”:”small-only”},{“type”:”text”,”text”:””},{“type”:”newsletterbox”}],”assetTags”:[“bullying”,”dwarfism”,”human_height”,”smg_gta”,”behavior”,”quaden_bayles”,”john_young”,”social_issues”,”quaden_young”,”australian_boy”,”john_young”,”smg2_news”,”bullying”,”human_behavior”,”quotation_mark”,”dwarfism”,”midget”,”growth_disorders”,”punctuation”,”kwong_evelyn”],”seoKeywords”:”Quaden young,dwarfism,John Young,bullying,Australian boy,Quaden Bayles,smg_gta,smg2_news”,”excludeInRecommendations”:false,”promo”:[],”related”:{“pubdays”:0,”strategy”:0},”seoHead”:”Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral”,”headline”:”Toronto-born marathoner speaks out about bullying after video of Australian boy Quaden Bayles goes viral”,”subheadline”:”Though John Young has never met Quaden, a 9-year-old Australian Aboriginal boy with dwarfism, he connected with his mother over Facebook and a relationship developed. “,”canonicalUrl”:”https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral.html”,”seoDescription”:”Though John Young has never met Quaden, a 9-year-old Australian Aboriginal boy with dwarfism, he connected with his mother over Facebook and a relationship developed. “,”storytag”:”NEW”,”publishedepoch”:1582307032494,”lastmodifiedepoch”:1582308463813,”abstractVisible”:false,”abstract”:”Though John Young has never met Quaden, a 9-year-old Australian Aboriginal boy with dwarfism, he connected with his mother over Facebook and a relationship developed. “,”relatedLinks”:[],”paywallMode”:”metered”,”storyuuid”:”6fa7b6d0-c6d3-41af-bf9c-4232b4b23afb”,”slideshowid”:”B881052065Z.1″,”lastmodified”:”02 21 2020″,”lastreplicated”:”1:17 PM, Fri., Feb. 21, 2020″,”readtime”:4,”breadcrumbs”:[{“label”:”News”,”relurl”:”/news”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news.html”},{“label”:”GTA”,”relurl”:”/news/gta”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news/gta.html”}],”authors”:[{“author”:”Evelyn Kwong”,”photo”:{“origImageSize”:”1200×800″,”lastmodified”:2700061000,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/columnist_logos/Kwong_Evelyn_logo_2015W.jpg.size.custom.crop.640×360.jpg”},”location”:”Toronto”,”tag”:”kwong_evelyn”,”credit”:”Toronto Star”,”twitterId”:”evystadium”,”email”:”ekwong@thestar.ca”}],”basic”:true,”numOfParagraphs”:21,”liftigImage”:{“captionPosition”:”overlay”,”fullWindowMainart”:false,”type”:”image”,”imageid”:”G5JSU98G.3″,”origImageSize”:”1200×792″,”lastmodified”:1582307761764,”forceoriginal”:false,”caption”:”Marathon runner John Young makes his way along a training route in 2018. Young was born with dwarfism, but that hasn’t stopped him from conquering multiple marathons and triathlons. “,”source”:”The Associated Press”,”credit”:”Steven Senne”,”url”:”/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”renditions”:[{“url”:”https://images.thestar.com/Omm9buOLKmdkDtcP-49CGaxkZYc=/93×52/smart/filters:cb(1582307761764)/https://www.thestar.com/content/dam/thestar/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral/johnyoung.jpg”,”width”:93,”height”:52,”scalefactor”:8,”aspect”:”wide”}]},”seopublisheddate”:”2020-02-21″,”seomodifieddate”:”2020-02-21″,”primarylabel”:{“label”:”GTA”,”relurl”:”/news/gta”,”url”:”https://www.thestar.com/content/thestar/news/gta.html”},”totalParas”:21,”additionalEvents”:”,event29″},”loaded”:true,”comscore”:”pageview_candidate”,”paywall”:true,”ogUrlMetatag”:”https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/02/21/toronto-born-marathoner-speaks-out-about-bullying-after-video-of-australian-boy-quaden-bayles-goes-viral.html”}
//–>

ADVERTISEMENT

Marathon runner John Young makes his way along a training route in 2018. Young was born with dwarfism, but that hasn't stopped him from conquering multiple marathons and triathlons.

A video posted by the mother of a 9-year-old Quaden Bayles crying after being bullied for having dwarfism went viral Thursday evening.

What followed was an outpouring of support for the Australian Aboriginal boy, from the national Aboriginal rugby team to actor Hugh Jackman.

But this daily bullying is no suprise for Toronto-born John Young, who also has the same type of dwarfism.

From being photographed without permission to having his image posted on social media alongside the quote “I think everyone should own a midget,” the teacher and part-time marathon runner now based in Boston is speaking up.

Though Young has never met Quaden or his mother, they’ve connected before over Facebook. When Young qualified for the Boston Marathon in 2017, he asked Quaden’s mother to send a bandana that represented the Australian Aboriginal flag for the race. “I wore it on my racebelt and have done so in a couple of other marathons as well. I wore it to try and gain some inspiration from him, as I know he has dealt with a number of physical and emotional challenges related to his dwarfism.”

During the race, Quaden became Young’s inspiration. “When my body felt sore or tired, I thought of Quaden and his battles and I gained strength from him. I also hoped it showed him, that though others may think our bodies are limited in what they can do, we know the truth is, you can do anything. You just might have to do it in a different way.”

The Star reached out to John Young for an interview:

As a person with dwarfism, what don’t others know about your daily experience?

Comments from strangers happen each and every day. I have become immune to many of them and often don’t even notice they’ve happened unless I’m with someone who points them out. Unwanted photographs occur a lot. When that happens, I deal with it directly and tell people it’s not appropriate and they need to stop. Most of the time, they run away, but sometimes, they stop and apologize.

When that happens, I try and actually have a conversation with them about it. I’m always more interested in educating people than shaming them. What really upsets me though, is that some comedians think it’s still acceptable to makes jokes about people with short-stature, using words like midget, etc. The more this continues, the more likely the bullying and other jokes will continue.

Is there an instance of bullying that resonates with you to this day?

About eight years ago I was racing in the NYC Triathlon. Another competitor blogged about me after the race including pictures his wife had taken saying things like, “I think everyone should own a midget.” It was despicable. When I wrote about it, others responded. He soon removed the post and was also banned from competing in that race again. Some irony about it though, years later it was discovered that he had been competing in other marathons and ultra marathons and had been cheating in thoses races, in order to win by hiding out and taking short cuts in the races. All in all, a pretty sad person.

How can we all do better to support those who have dwarfism?

I think this goes to anyone you perceive as “different.” Differences should be celebrated and respected. If we were all the same, the world would be a pretty boring place. Understand that someone with dwarfism wants exactly the same things any other person wants. To be happy, healthy and safe. If you see someone with dwarfism, or any other difference being shamed or bullied, be an upstander and say something. When you hear a joke or something meant to single out and ridicule a particular group of people, speak out!

This needs to be stressed with children. Talk to them. Make sure they understand that differences are not things to be laughed at or pointed out, or even made to feel sorry for.

We are not “stricken” with, nor do we “suffer” from it. There might be complications associated with it that we have to deal with, but again, we just deal with life in a different way.

Get more of today’s top stories in your inbox

Sign up for the Star’s Morning Headlines email newsletter for a briefing of the day’s big news.

Sign Up Now

What shouldn’t we do?

Treat them differently or “special.” Now that’s different when it comes to accommodations: the world is not made of people of short stature, so of course, the world around us has to adapt. When we can’t reach something, we might need help. But don’t assume we need help. Always ask first.

What is your personal message to kids and people like Quaden, who have to deal with daily bullying?

Gravitate to a core group of friends who love you for who you are. But I’ve always believed if you confront a bully straight on, they will often back down. They are weak, that’s why they are lashing out at others. Find your strength! And as I stated, everyone needs to be an upstander.

More from The Star & Partners





Source link