African-American celebrities have released songs and statements concerning the killing of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile at the hands of the police.
Today, July 8, 2016, Hip-Hop mogul and rapper Jay Z released a new song called 'Spiritual' where he touched on police brutality in black communities. Providing a back drop to the song, Jay Z revealed that the song had been done months ago but he didn't release it because he sadly felt that the song will always be relevant.
"Punch (Terrence Henderson, co-president of record label TDE) told me I should drop it when Mike Brown died, sadly I told him, 'this issue will always be relevant he wrote on Tidal on a black backdrop. "I'm saddened and disappointed in THIS America - we should be further along. WE ARE NOT. I trust God and know everything that happens is for our greatest good, but man.... it's tough right now" he further wrote.
Jay Z ended his statement by quoting African-American social crusader Frederick Douglass. "Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe."
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His wife, pop star Beyonce also released a statement concerning the police killings. "We are sick and tired of the killings of young men and women in our communities. It is up to us to take a stand and demand that they 'stop killing us.' We don't need sympathy. We need people to respect our lives" wrote Beyonce on her website.
Later in the day during her performance in Glasgow Beyonce observed a minute of silence on stage. The names of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile also appeared on the screen alongside other victims of police brutality.
Rapper Drake who normally keeps quiet about these type of issues released his own statement yesterday too. The Hip-Hop star said he was disheartened and scared over the Louisiana shooting. "I am grateful to be able to call America my second home. Last night when i saw the video of Alton Sterling being killed, it left me disheartened, emotional and truly scared. I woke up this morning with a strong need to say something.
"It's impossible to ignore that the relationship between black and brown communities and law enforcement remains strained as it was decades ago. No one begins their life as a hastag. Yet the trend of being reduced to one continues.
"This is real and i am concerned. Concerned for the safety of my family, my friends and any human being that could fall victim to this pattern. I do not know the answer. But i believe things can change for the better. Open and honest dialogue if the first step.
"My thoughts and prayers are with the Sterling family and any family that has lost someone to this cycle of violence.
"Be safe out there. More life" posted Drake on Instagram.
R&B star Chris Brown has spoken candidly on the issue and has also released a song. Other artistes who have released songs over the recent police brutality cases are Swizz Beatz and Solange Knowles.
Will.i.am, Nicki Minaj, Tyga, Kelly Rowland have also released statements concerning police brutality in America.