When Justin Timberlake took the stage at the iHeartRadio Music Awards on Sunday, he came with an incredibly inspiring message about the importance of diversity and the power that comes with being different.
Addressing young people in the audience and watching from home, the singer-songwriter ended his acceptance speech for Best Song of the Year for “Can’t Stop the Feeling” by offering up a message of solidarity, acceptance, and empowerment — and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
“I wrote this song because I wanted it to be about inclusion, about being together,” he said. “I want to take this opportunity to speak to young people right now — cause there’s a lot of you looking at me.”
“If you are black or you are brown or you are gay or you are lesbian or you are trans, or maybe you’re just a sissy singing boy from Tennessee,” he continued. “Anyone that is treating you unkindly, it’s only because they are afraid or they have been taught to be afraid of how important you are. Because being different means you make the difference, so fuck ’em.”
Of course, the last bit of his speech ended up getting censored during the live broadcast — but it’s safe to say viewers got his message loud and clear.
You can watch his entire speech below: