Failing to signal a lane change, riding in your girlfriend’s car with a child in the back and walking home with a friend are just 3 of the 23 arbitrary reasons why you could be killed if you are black in America, as Alicia Keys, Beyoncé and Janelle Monáe point out in a powerful new video condemning police brutality.
The collaborative effort between Alicia Keys, Mic and the We Are Here Movement highlights just how easy it is for blacks to be killed for performing everyday actions — in other words, for nothing more than the color of their skin. Joining Alicia, Bey and Janelle are some of the biggest names in entertainment including Rihanna, A$AP Rocky, Chance the Rapper and Pharrell. In the grainy, resolutely colorless snippets, each celebrity speaks for a victim of police brutality, describing the act that was their death sentence (with the exception of Bono, who represents the nine men and women who died en route to Bible study). An incredulous Taraji P. Henson almost loses it as she memorializes Alton Sterling, who was shot to death for the crime of “selling CDs outside of a supermarket.”
At the video’s conclusion, Alicia Keys encourages viewers to go to WeAreHereMovement.com and sign a petition (grimly, though aptly, labeled “Moonshot”) urging President Obama and Congress to “right our historic wrongs and heal the wounds of systemic racism so that all Americans have the equal right to pursue happiness.”
Take a deep breath, watch, sign and spread the word using the hashtag #23ways.
[ via Mic ]