“As a mixed male, I have been called so many names. There have been people who have put me down as a person just because of my color and what I look like. They’ve stated that I won’t be able to accomplish my goals due to my sexual orientation and color. But I wish people would remember that I’m still a person, regardless of whether or not you consider me beautiful or ugly. I work hard to be successful, and those kind of words hurt.

When it comes to society’s representation of men of color, we are always portrayed as having natural, flawless, amazing bodies. But in reality, all of us don’t have society’s standard of the perfect body or killer arms, even if we are men of color.  For some of us, if that’s what we want to look like, it’s something we work hard to accomplish. I know my body isn’t perfect, but on TV or music videos, society pretty much tells all men, especially men of color, that if you want to be accepted in this world, that’s what you need to be, period.

#WeSmileToo challenges society’s unfair standards of beauty, especially for men of color by showing we are all different in so many ways, and that it’s okay. It reminds all men of color to keep our heads up and smile.”