Twenty One Pilots' Tyler Joseph faces backlash over "tone-deaf" joke

3 September 2020, 11:46

By Sam Prance

Tyler Joseph has since apologised in an extensive Twitter thread about mental health and Black Lives Matter.

Twenty One Pilots frontman Tyler Joseph is coming under fire after making a joke about fans asking him to use his platform more.

Yesterday (Sep 3), Tyler took to Twitter to post a set of photos of him wearing a pair of white platform trainers, alongside the caption: "you guys keep asking me to use my platforms. feels good to dust these bad boys off." The tweet appeared to be a joke about the fact that TØP fans have recently been asking Tyler to use his platform to speak out on important issues.

Given the fact that Tyler still hadn't spoken about Black Lives Matter or other pressing issues, the tweet received criticism online. Now, Tyler has responded to the backlash and spoken out about mental health and BLM in a series of tweets.

Twenty One Pilots' Tyler Joseph faces backlash over "tone-deaf" joke
Twenty One Pilots' Tyler Joseph faces backlash over "tone-deaf" joke. Picture: Amy Sussman/Getty Images for KROQ, @tylerjoseph via Twitter

Following Tyler's initial tweet, one fan responded: "you look good but this caption is really tone deaf and insensitive. you’ve been known to not like to talk about “politics” but are human rights really that political? no, they are not. as i am sure you’ve seen petitions going around: please spread them. use your platform for real."

Another person added: "maybe... actually use your platform? no? okay".

As opposed to directly responding to the backlash, Tyler then posted a series of tweets about mental health. He wrote: "your own mental health should always be a priority. i’m amazed at how easy it is to forget that simple fact. it’s something that can sneak up on you, then eventually you check in on it and realize it’s in really bad shape."

Tyler also drew attention to Suicide Prevention Awareness week. In an extensive thread, he tweeted: "starting September 6th is national suicide prevention awareness week. what does that mean exactly? i don’t know. but if it can get a single person’s attention at the right time, it’s everything"

Then, Tyler wrote: "this isn’t a notes app moment. i’m doubling down on my platform tweet. it was fantastic."

Following more backlash, Tyler tweeted: "my tweet wasn’t suppose to be about human rights. so in case you are wondering where i stand: Black Lives Matter." He continued: "i just wanted to take a moment to raise awareness about something else that has meant a lot to me for a long time. but now I see there is no room for that right now."

He also wrote: "I'm truly sorry if it hurt anyone. here is a link with a lot of great info that i stand by." The link Tyler shared is a site that includes other links to Black Lives Matter protest information, petitions to sign and places to donate to help people affected by police brutality.

As it stands, Tyler still hasn't deleted his initial tweet.