Since I was young, I liked to speak up for the underdog. Because I spoke out so much in junior high and high school, trying to help other people, I was brutally beaten up when I was thirteen years old by one of the biggest, strongest guys in school. I spent those years being hit, beaten, tripped in the hallways, you know, stuff thrown at me, by this guy and his couple of friends. In high school, this guy targeted me on the football field, came and hit me after the whistle, and snapped my femur in half. Later, when I was in college, I found out that the same guy raped a younger relative of mine. So I’ve carried hardcore baggage about bullying with me my whole life.
People can say what they want about the character I play, I knew what I was getting into when I signed on for this role; I played Sheriff Lamb on “Veronica Mars” for three years and was the antagonist. You’re talked about a certain way online and that’s understandable, but when it starts getting so personal that it’s talking about you, your relationship with co-workers, and maybe your parenting skills, your spouse, and your family – when people go to that level, that’s when I see red
I speak out against systems that I think are broken, whether it be the Emmy process, actors that I feel that were overlooked, or voting polls – all that kind of stuff. I’m a huge proponent for the NOH8 campaign and gay marriage. I just sympathize with people who are being bullied. What’s interesting is that as a grown man, father, and professional, I’m speaking out about some things that could get fixed and it’s causing some bullying. I knew that speaking out would make me a target, but it doesn’t mean I won’t fight back. I just think [online bullying] is a really important issue, especially now with YouTube and all the social media where you see teens that are committing suicide through bullying. I’m always going to speak up, and people will form certain opinions about me, but I still believe it’s the right thing to do.
Michael Muhney (Sheriff Don Lamb / Adam Newman) recently speaks in an interview for soap magazine about bullying, “I’ve carried hardcore baggage about bullying with me my whole life.”
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