Whether it is Baltimore, Texas, Ferguson or New York, the rise in racial tension between police and African Americans has reached an all-time high. Where there is an uprising, people are guaranteed to find a hashtag followed by a slain Black person’s name. The difference in the past year has not only been the popularity of Black Twitter, but the rise in celebrity participation in activist spaces on social media. Yes, people’s favorite rappers, singers and artists are tweeting to express their frustration with police brutality and the injustices Black people in this country face.
Most recently in the wake of the suspicious death of 28-year-old activist Sandra Bland, who was arrested and detained for three days for not signaling by Waller County, Texas police. Not only have top #BlackTwitter activists taken to posting links and dishing prophetic tweets on the case but also some favorite celebrities.
Celebs such as Jesse Williams, Nicki Minaj, Kerry Washington and Kim Kardashian have all taken to Instagram and Twitter to speak out and stand up with the #blacklivesmatter movement that has swept social media.
“We are people who have watched the state kill, lie & steal without penalty or remorse,” well-known twitter activist Deray Mckesson said.
Hollywood and the world took to Twitter with the hashtag #SayHerName and #SandraBland to speak out against the suspicious nature of Bland’s death. Kim Kardashian specifically took to twitter to speak on the matter.
“#WhatHappenedToSandraBland We need answers!!!! This is NOT ok! This is all shady! They need to own up to this & tell the truth!” Kardashian said.
Other celebrities such as Kerry Washington and Nicki Minaj all spoke on the Bland case giving condolences and expressing outrage on the matter at hand.
“This quote hit me hard this morning. Ugh. Need to breathe,” Kerry Washington said after posting on Twitter a response to a Zora Neale Hurston quote posted by comedian Margaret Cho.
This type of social media activism does of course look different for some celebrities such as actor Jesse Williams, who has a long history of posting full discourses on race, police brutality and privilege on Twitter. Most recently, his full discourse on Bland’s case was the talk of Twitter. In the critique, Williams spoke on how connected police brutality is to the Black experience and just how white privilege plays into the justice system.
Rappers such as Meek Mill, P.Diddy, Ja Rule and many others posted on Instagram to honor Bland’s life and give support to the search for answers in Bland’s case. Go on your Timeline to see what your favorite celebrities and artist are saying about #SandraBland and the fight to end racial discrimination!
Arts and Entertainment Staff Writer