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Why a heartwarming scene from ‘School of Rock’ has gone viral nearly 20 years later

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Jack Black’s beloved character from “School of Rock” is still imparting poignant life lessons nearly 20 years after the movie premiered.

A heartwarming sequence from the 2003 musical comedy has resurfaced on social media this week after writer and animator Hamish Steele shared on Twitter why it “stuck with him as a child.”

In the brief clip, wannabe rock star-turned-elementary school teacher Dewey Finn (Black) gives one of his students, Tomika (Maryam Hassan), an inspiring backstage pep talk about body positivity.

“This scene is more revolutionary than I think they even knew,” Steele wrote in a tweet that has amassed more than 447,000 likes and counting. “Especially the last line.”

“Whenever I see fatphobia I think of this scene and it makes me feel better,” he added in a follow-up tweet. “If you like Jack Black, shut the f— up about people’s weight. It’s that simple.”

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This scene is more revolutionary than I think they even knew and it really stuck with me as a child. Especially the last line. pic.twitter.com/KkhvGicjVZ

— ✨hamish steele✨ (@hamishsteele) April 18, 2021

The cult-classic film, written by Mike White and directed by Richard Linklater, stars Black as a haphazard guitarist who poses as a substitute teacher at a local private school and recruits his young pupils to form a competitive rock band.

Right before a pivotal performance, the most talented singer in the class, Tomika, comes down with stage fright, telling her teacher she fears the crowd will laugh at her “because I’m fat.”

“Tomika … you’ve got something everybody wants. You’ve got talent, girl,” Black’s character tells her in the viral scene.

“You have an incredible voice, and I’m not just saying that. You heard of Aretha Franklin, right? She’s a big lady. But when she starts singing, she blows people’s minds. Everybody wants to party with Aretha! And you know who else has a weight issue? … Me. But once I get up onstage, start doing my thing, people worship me. Because I’m sexy! And chubby, man.”

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When Tomika asks why her teacher isn’t “on a diet,” he simply responds, “Because I like to eat. Is that such a crime?”

The touching exchange lasts about 43 seconds, but its impact on children who saw themselves in Tomika is immeasurable, as evidenced by the ongoing emotional response to Steele’s tweet.

“As a chubby kid, I remember watching this scene and replaying it over and over,” wrote one person. “I felt … seen. Jack Black spoke to every single kid and person that has been bullied because of their weight. Legendary behavior.”

“Jack black did more for my body image issues growing up as a fat girl than my mother or any other adult ever did,” tweeted another.

Even Hassan, who portrayed Tomika in “School of Rock” and is now a musician who performs under the name Mayhrenate, joined the conversation, saying she is “glad to have played a part in such an important moment/scene.” (Her latest EP, “Plush,” came out earlier this year.)

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“As a child I didn’t realize the fullll impact of the scene but it definitely hits different today,” Hassan wrote Sunday in a tweet that has racked up more than 223,000 likes. In the replies, she confirmed that Black is indeed “cool and lovely” in real life and teased a potential “School of Rock” reunion approaching the film’s 20th anniversary.

“School of Rock” is available to stream on Hulu with a premium subscription and via video-on-demand. See more reactions to Black’s moving monologue below.

As a child I didn’t realize the fullll impact of the scene but it definitely hits different today. Glad to have played a part in such an important moment/scene 💕✨ https://t.co/o4BpUChapj

— AlkalineWaterMami (@Mayhrenate) April 19, 2021

my favorite part about this scene is that he never says “you’re not fat”

you can be fat and beautiful and smart and successful and happy. I wish more people said that than “you’re not fat” https://t.co/NxNobThb9C

— natalie | she/her (@natalieanneliza) April 20, 2021

This has been one of my favorite movies since it came out. Still is. Loved it even more after I became a teacher and realized, actually, Jack Black’s character is a GREAT teacher. https://t.co/mbkN0VRT56

— Micki (@micki914) April 20, 2021

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Jack Black is one of the few famous people that I not only crush on, but identify with. This scene from School of Rock is basically my life’s motto. (I mean, if you incorporate “really fun” in your definition of “sexy,” which I do.) https://t.co/7yAfcNAaB8

— Wendy N. Wagner (@wnwagner) April 20, 2021

“Why ain’t you on a diet”

“Because i like to eat. Is that such a crime??”

Honestly one of my favourites. I don’t know how many times of watched this movie. https://t.co/9G7eW11sQt

— Vonney (@EvEy_Mo) April 20, 2021

I know this scene word for word. Such an impactful statement for me as a child, I’d never heard anyone say anything like this before. https://t.co/NCQT48Fp9t

— Ari 🏳️‍🌈 (@arirachaelb) April 20, 2021

i wonder if people realize just how long and how dear fat people will hold any movie that actually portrayed fat characters as human. even just one moment where they are the center of attention/love interest/center of praise can alter your entire worldview as a fat kid. https://t.co/SVIbpEjir2

— bestie bonnie (@bonnieisinjail) April 20, 2021

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Literally makes me cry, the irony that he’s not a “teacher” but this is a better response than a lot teachers know how to give https://t.co/Q3LK0nxjro

— Gilroy (@GilroyBand) April 20, 2021

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Elon Musk Says He’ll Pay $11 Billion in Taxes in 2021 But Twitter Wants ‘Proof’

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Elon Musk took to Twitter to clarify once and for all that he will be paying a whopping $11 billion as taxes this year.

If the number of times Elon Musk could count when someone has asked him to pay the full taxes, he would be a very rich..wait, never mind. The Tesla boss is rich beyond any private individual has been in history, reports said.

Musk has increasingly been facing criticism from many politicians and many others who insist he has not been paying taxes as compared to the profits his companies have been making. On Sunday, the SpaceX CEO took to Twitter to share that he will be paying a whopping $11 billion as taxes.

For those wondering, I will pay over $11 billion in taxes this year— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 20, 2021

But some of the questions did not stop. One person tweeted how they needed to see Musk’s tax returns while yet another asked how much percentage was that of his total income.

A few were, however scathing of the government who thought they will add that amount to their pockets rather than using it for some proper development.

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Wow that’s enough to give each person in the world almost $2 million but instead the government will just stick it in their pockets— greg (@greg16676935420) December 20, 2021

Why not $200 billion? Asking for a Senator— litquidity (@litcapital) December 20, 2021

Earlier this week, Democratic US Senator Elizabeth Warren has tweeted to say that Musk should pay taxes and stop “freeloading off everyone else” after Time magazine named him its “person of the year”.

In response, Musk shot four tweets in which he said that the senator reminded him of a friend’s angry mom who yelled at everybody. He tweeted, ““And if you opened your eyes for 2 seconds, you would realize I will pay more taxes than any American in history this year.” “Don’t spend it all at once … oh wait you did already.”

He added further, “You remind me of when I was a kid and my friend’s angry Mom would just randomly yell at everyone for no reason.”

Musk responded by saying that he “will pay more taxes than any American in history this year”. This Twitter exchange left netizens divided as even though many supported Warren and agreed that Musk should pay more taxes, others felt that he was already doing enough.

Musk’s Tesla is worth about $1 trillion. Over the last few weeks, he has sold nearly $14 billion worth of Tesla shares.

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The Tesla boss has been pushing for his colonize Mars agenda for years now, and has made it very clear in some occasions that he would rather spend the money on putting humanity on the red planet, than pay his taxes. “My plan,” the SpaceX founder tweeted about his fortune, “is to use the money to get humanity to Mars and preserve the light of consciousness.”

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Twitter Admits Policy ‘Errors’ After Far-Right Abuse Its New Rules of Posting Pictures

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Twitter’s new picture permission policy was aimed at combating online abuse, but US activists and researchers said Friday that far-right backers have employed it to protect themselves from scrutiny and to harass opponents.

Even the social network admitted the rollout of the rules, which say anyone can ask Twitter to take down images of themselves posted without their consent, was marred by malicious reports and its teams’ own errors.

It was just the kind of trouble anti-racism advocates worried was coming after the policy was announced this week.

Their concerns were quickly validated, with anti-extremism researcher Kristofer Goldsmith tweeting a screenshot of a far-right call-to-action circulating on Telegram: “Due to the new privacy policy at Twitter, things now unexpectedly work more in our favor.”

“Anyone with a Twitter account should be reporting doxxing posts from the following accounts,” the message said, with a list of dozens of Twitter handles.

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Gwen Snyder, an organizer and researcher in Philadelphia, said her account was blocked this week after a report to Twitter about a series of 2019 photos she said showed a local political candidate at a march organized by extreme-right group Proud Boys.

Rather than go through an appeal with Twitter she opted to delete the images and alert others to what was happening.

“Twitter moving to eliminate (my) work from their platform is incredibly dangerous and is going to enable and embolden fascists,” she told AFP.

In announcing the privacy policy on Tuesday, Twitter noted that “sharing personal media, such as images or videos, can potentially violate a person’s privacy, and may lead to emotional or physical harm.”

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But the rules don’t apply to “public figures or individuals when media and accompanying Tweets are shared in the public interest or add value to public discourse.”

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By Friday, Twitter noted the roll out had been rough: “We became aware of a significant amount of coordinated and malicious reports, and unfortunately, our enforcement teams made several errors.”

“We’ve corrected those errors and are undergoing an internal review to make certain that this policy is used as intended,” the firm added.

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Jack Dorsey Post Twitter Is Chasing His Crypto, Fintech Dream

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At a packed Miami conference in June, Jack Dorsey, mused in front of thousands of attendees about where his real passion lay: “If I weren’t at Square or Twitter, I’d be working on Bitcoin.”

On Monday, Dorsey made good on one part of that, announcing he would leave Twitter for the second time, handing the CEO position to a 10-year veteran at the firm. The 45-year-old entrepreneur, who is often described as an enigma with varied interests from meditation to yoga to fashion design, plans to pursue his passion which include focusing on running Square and doing more philanthropic work, according to a source familiar with his plan.

Well before the surprise news, Dorsey had laid the groundwork for his next chapter, seeding both companies with cryptocurrency-related projects.

Underlying Dorsey’s broader vision is the principle of “decentralisation,” or the idea that technology and finance should not be concentrated among a handful of gatekeepers, as it is now, but should, instead, be steered by the hands of the many, either people or entities.

The concept has played out at Square, which has built a division devoted to working on projects and awarding grants with the aim of growing Bitcoin’s popularity globally. Bitcoin price in India stood at Rs. 44.52 lakh as of 12:50pm IST on December 1.

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Dorsey has been a longtime proponent of Bitcoin, and the appeal is that the cryptocurrency will allow for private and secure transactions with the value of Bitcoin unrelated to any government.

The idea has also underpinned new projects at Twitter, where Dorsey tapped a top lieutenant – and now the company’s new CEO Parag Agrawal – to oversee a team that is attempting to construct a decentralised social media protocol, which will allow different social platforms to connect with one another, similar to the way email providers operate.

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The project called Bluesky will aim to allow users control over the types of content they see online, removing the “burden” on companies like Twitter to enforce a global policy to fight abuse or misleading information, Dorsey said in 2019 when he announced Bluesky.

Bitcoin has also figured prominently at both of his companies. Square became one of the first public companies to own Bitcoin assets on its balance sheet, having invested $220 million (roughly Rs. 1,650 crore) in the cryptocurrency.

In August, Square created a new business unit called TBD to focus on Bitcoin. The company is also planning to build a hardware wallet for Bitcoin, a Bitcoin mining system, as well as a decentralised Bitcoin exchange.

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Twitter allows users to tip their favourite content creators with Bitcoin and has been testing integrations with non-fungible tokens (NFTs), a type of digital asset that allows people to collect unique digital art.

Analysts see the transition as a positive signal for Square, the fintech platform he co-founded in 2009. Square’s core Cash App, after a bull run in its share in 2020, has experienced slower growth in the most recent quarter. It is also trying to digest the $29 billion (roughly Rs. 2,17,240 crore) acquisition of Buy Now Pay Later provider Afterpay, its largest acquisition ever.

But these ambitions will not pay off until years from now, analysts cautioned.

“The blockchain platform they’re trying to develop is great but also fraught with technical challenges and difficult to scale for consumers. I think he’ll focus more on Square and crypto will be part of that,” said Christopher Brendler, an analyst at DA Davidson.

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© Thomson Reuters 2021

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Interested in cryptocurrency? We discuss all things crypto with WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty and WeekendInvesting founder Alok Jain on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

Cryptocurrency is an unregulated digital currency, not a legal tender and subject to market risks. The information provided in the article is not intended to be and does not constitute financial advice, trading advice or any other advice or recommendation of any sort offered or endorsed by NDTV. NDTV shall not be responsible for any loss arising from any investment based on any perceived recommendation, forecast or any other information contained in the article.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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