Following the gut-wrenching events that took place last week in which Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were each shot and killed by police officers for selling CDs and reaching for identification, respectively, action is being taken across the country to ensure that more Black Americans don’t lose their lives because of unjustified brutality. In a video released by Alicia Keys, Mic and the We Are Here Movement titled “23 Ways You Could Be Killed If You Are Black In America” celebrities and musicians alike list the many reasons Blacks have been gunned down, speaking in grave tones about the lives lost.
In the near three-minute clip, Talib Kweli, Common, Queen Latifah, Swiss Beatz, A$AP Rocky, Rihanna, Chance The Rapper, Pharrell and more give a sobering account of the reasons 23 Americans lost their lives including failing to signal a lane change, riding a commuter train, walking home with a friend, making eye contact, wearing a hoodie, laughing and holding a wallet. At the end, Keys offers a call to action, saying, “Go to Weareheremovement.com to tell President Obama and Congress that the time for change is now. We demand radical transformation to heal the long history of systemic racism so that all Americans gave the equal right to live and to pursue happiness.”
Some in the hip-hop community have taken serious action in light of recent events, with The Game and Snoop Dogg leading a peaceful march in Los Angeles to help foster relations between police and the community. Killer Mike meanwhile went on an Atlanta radio station to encourage residents to only invest their money in businesses that have vocally supported them and their causes. Hashtags and online rallying have proven to be insufficient measure in remedying this issue and so many with the power to influence are doing just that, with the above PSA adding to that notion.
— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) July 13, 2016