Experts agree that the role of the “bystander” is key in blunting the affects of bullying. The Center for Social and Emotional Education thought that the role of bystander is so important that perhaps it should be renamed to reflect that action is required. So bystander became “upstander,” which says so much more.

You could just be standing there minding your own business and WHAM, there’s a need to step up and support someone who is being mistreated. In that moment, a decision has to be made. Do I step in to the problem or do I just let that person/child fend for themselves? Do I care enough to lend a sympathetic ear, or tell the bully to “stop,” or get additional help… or do I just stand by?

During this recording with the chorus from P.S. 22, Michael Angelakos, lead singer of the award-winning band Passion Pit, proved he is an UPSTANDER. In under 30 seconds, he could have possibly changed this lucky child’s life.

Do we have to be a celebrity to be an upstander? No way. In that moment and in that child’s eyes, it’s extremely likely that Angelakos was just a person saying the right thing at the right time.

So to every upstander out there, ROCK ON.

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