Captain Tom Moore is a hero who’s raised millions for the NHS. People bullying Sam Smith in his name should be ashamed
A picture of Sam Smith crying was shared to Instagram last week. Now, the incredible achievements of captain Tom Moore, the 99-year-old who has raised almost £15 million for the NHS, are inexplicably being used by some on social media to attack the singer for opening up about their mental health struggles.
Moore, a war veteran, began fundraising on April 8. He hoped to raise £1,000 for NHS Charities Together by his 100th birthday on April 30 by walking 100 lengths of his garden.
However, as news of his efforts spread, Moore raised £70,000 in the first 24 hours, a figure which has now grown to more than £14 million.
He finished his final 25 lengths on Thursday, April 16, with a guard of honour from the 1st Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment on the sidelines.
Thank you all for your amazing support. It has been a memorable experience. Thank you so much.@BBCNaga @BBCBreakfast @BBCNews @BBCWorld @BBCRadio2 @mrmichaelball @GMB @piersmorgan @susannareid100 @NickFerrariLBC #walkwithtom #TomorrowWillBeAGoodDay https://t.co/82tFdZCJSG
— Captain Tom Moore (@captaintommoore) April 16, 2020
But the incredible efforts of captain Moore have sparked a bizarre and horrific trend on social media, which appears to have started when one Twitter user posted a picture of the captain side-by-side with a picture of Sam Smith crying during self-isolation.
They wrote: “One is a multi millionaire snowflake (Sam Smith) sitting outside [their] house crying because [they’re] in self-isolation and the other is a 99-year-old war veteran raising money for the NHS.
“I know who I want on my side when the s**te hits the fan.”
One is a multi millionaire snowflake (Sam Smith) sitting outside his house crying because he’s in self-isolation and the other is a 99yr old war veteran raising money for the NHS.
I know who I want on my side when the Shite hits the fan. pic.twitter.com/LrDSc535fX
— CFC Meady (@CFCMeady) April 16, 2020
Smith has spoken about how self-isolation during the coronavirus pandemic has impacted their mental health, but this didn’t matter to the hundreds of people who retweeted the comparison.
One person replied: “Oh yeah my mental health would be bad if I lived in a 12 million quid mansion with a pool and God knows what else. Some f**kers live in flats and ain’t moaning like this f**ker.”
Luckily, others were quick to jump in and call out the ridiculous posts.
Jonny Alcock shared a Facebook post about “false equivalences”, alongside photos of Matt Hancock and captain Moore.
He wrote: “One of the two people shown below is Matt Hancock who cheered when nurses were refused a pay rise, isn’t capable of providing adequate PPE, tests or ventilators and works for a government who’ve cut funding to the NHS leaving it in a state of disarray.
“The other is captain Tom Moore, who’s done a wonderful job raising millions to go to the health service which the tax payers fund, and should never have to receive charity funding.
“He’s paid taxes for almost a hundred years, yet still has to do this because of government mismanagement, bravo sir.
“This is how you do an equivalence, Sam Smith has absolutely no relevance to this situation and attacking someone for struggling with mental health problems makes you look horrible.”
A Facebook post I did about false equivalences, Sam Smith and Captain Tom Moore. pic.twitter.com/mgIAJWKUfm
— Jonny Alcock (@AlcockJonny) April 16, 2020
According to his family, part of Moore’s motivation in raising money for the NHS was to give back after the amazing care he received from them.
As someone who believes in passing on kindness, it is unlikely that Moore would accept someone with mental health problems was being bullied in his name.
Others on social media pointed out that it has been just two months Caroline Flack’s death by suicide, which was followed by the widespread use of the hashtag #BeKind to tackle online hatred.
One Twitter user wrote: “So people are using the brilliant fundraising of a 99-year-old man to post abuse about Sam Smith? It seems #BeKind was a short lived ‘trend’…
“Coronavirus is going to lead to a global mental health crisis, so how about we don’t judge people for showing emotion?”
So people are using the brilliant fundraising of a 99 year old man to post abuse about Sam Smith?
It seems #bekind was a short lived ‘trend’….
Coronavirus is going to lead to a global mental health crisis, so how about we don’t judge people for showing emotion? pic.twitter.com/whNcCp9yI0
— Joe (@JoeSaunders) April 16, 2020
The same people who are preaching mental health help when someone dies, are same ones online bullying when they know absolutely nothing about the next persons situation… well, which one is it then mate? @Richardwtaylors #Hypocrite Sam Smith pic.twitter.com/zyS57WMmNb
— Michael Saunders (@MSaundersUK) April 16, 2020
Another wrote: “The same people who are preaching mental health help when someone dies, are same ones online bullying when they know absolutely nothing about the next person’s situation… well, which one is it then mate?”
Thanks so much @samsmith! Thank you for all of your support and donation! 100,000 visors due this weekend and more to come (including journey map showing the route it took to get here)! #masksforNHSheroes #thankyouNHS. Keep watching this space 🙃 https://t.co/muPf5bW86t
— Masks for NHS heroes (@masksforNHS) April 9, 2020
On April 9, Smith made a personal donation to Masks for NHS Heroes, helping to provide PPE for frontline healthcare workers.