Piers Morgan is known for ruffling feathers with his social commentary, but he seems to have set off a bit of a parenting debate with his latest barb. The ruckus started on Tuesday’s episode of Good Morning Britain, where the TV host dad-shamed David Beckham for kissing his daughter Harper’s lips. As reported by the Mirror, Morgan insisted the show of affection wasn’t normal — going so far as to call it “creepy” and “weird,” and wonder aloud why Beckham would dare to share the moment. Unsurprisingly, a lot of people have thoughts on Morgan’s response.
But first, a bit of backstory about the apparently polarizing exchange. On Monday, Beckham’s wife, Victoria, posted a video to her Instagram stories from when Beckhams were on a boat trip in Miami, Florida. In the video, Beckham plants a perfectly innocent kiss on his 7-year-old’s daughter’s lips. Discussing the video on GMB, Morgan remarked, “Don’t get it — creepy. Weird. No one does that. Who does that?… You posted that for the world, why?” Though Morgan’s co-anchor Susanna Reid defended the sweet daddy-daughter moment, Morgan insisted it was “weird, weird, weird” behavior on Beckham’s part.
— Yahoo Style UK (@YahooStyleUK) June 4, 2019
Cue the internet and a robust debate about what sort of affection is appropriate for parents to show their children in public. According to Morgan, only a “firm handshake” for his sons Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz, and a “peck” on the cheek for Harper will do. But many people think the only thing wrong about a parent kissing their child is when people like Morgan sexualize it.
#davidbeckham I kiss my sons aged 17 on cheek, 11 year old on lips. It's a public sign of affection not to be mistaken for abuse. Come on mr vine 21st century becoming so censored celebrate the love of your family. I also kiss my cousins, nephews and nieces of all ages. Sent jvc5
— Chris Southern (@chrissouthern73) June 4, 2019
— ❤Lorraine Comerford❤ (@miraine) June 4, 2019
@theJeremyVine I'm 33 and I still kiss my parents on the lips. There is nothing wrong with it. If people have an issue with David Beckham doing this to his own child maybe you should think of why it causes you such distress
— Suzie Skene (@SkeneSuzie) June 4, 2019
Why do the media keep being this up everytime David Beckham kisses his own daughter… leave the man alone.. it’s not inappropriate in the slightest.. I don’t want to live in a world where you can’t kiss your own children.
— George Simonds (@Georgesimonds12) June 4, 2019
So piers has got his knickers in a twist about David beckham kissing his daughter on the lips… mate, I’m 31 and I still kiss my parents and grandparents on the lips, it’s a sign of affection and love, it’s not a snog… clearly someone didn’t get enough love as a child
— Chelsie Boyack (@chelsieboyack) June 4, 2019
— Alan gregory (@AlanGregory2016) June 4, 2019
This shit about David beckham , proper annoys me. I’m 22 years of age and I still kiss my mum on the lips, my nana when I see her. And even my dad when I knew him. It’s not wrong or sick unless you’re looking at it that way. Fix up you sickos
— JJF (@JamesForde96) November 30, 2018
However, some comments suggest that there are people who tend to side with Morgan on this matter.
Are the people of social media world REALLY accusing David Beckham of being a ‘paedo’ and a ‘nonce’ for kissing his child on the lips?
I fucking despair of the world.
I kiss my children on the lips and hug them all the time. I’m not a paedo, I’m a loving father! FFS!!
— Holden Ford ⚒ (@ClaretNBlues) November 28, 2018
As for Beckham himself, he’s made it very clear he DGAF what other people think — he’s doubling down on being the kind of dad he is. In 2017, Beckham came under heat for sharing an Instagram photo of himself kissing then-five-year-old Harper on the lips. When people began leaving accusatory and other negative comments on the photo, he posted a Facebook Live to explain his feelings, saying he kisses all of the couple’s children. Well, almost.
“Brooklyn, maybe not. Brooklyn’s [then] 18, he might find that a little bit strange. I’m very affectionate with the kids. It’s how I was brought up and Victoria, and it’s how we are with our children,” Beckham revealed, adding, “We want to show our kids love and we protect them, look after them, and support them, and you know, we’re very affectionate with them.”