Ava DuVernay and John Boyega lead Hollywood’s charge against George Floyd’s killing
Celebrities are using their platforms to denounce police brutality and racial injustice following the killing of George Floyd, a black man who died Monday after a white Minneapolis police officer pinned him to the ground with his knee.
Beyoncé, John Boyega, Ava DuVernay, Taylor Swift, Gabrielle Union, Cardi B, Cynthia Erivo, Lupita Nyong’o, Demi Lovato, Viola Davis, Janelle Monáe, Kim Kardashian West, Tracee Ellis Ross, Justin Bieber, Jeffrey Wright, Chance the Rapper, Ariana Grande, LeBron James and other entertainment luminaries expressed their outrage on social media.
Often with the hashtag #JusticeForFloyd, they’re sharing images and artwork of Floyd as well as the viral video of the officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck as he says, “I can’t breathe.”
Protesters briefly blocked both sides of the 101 Freeway in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday evening.
“You deserved your breath, your dignity, your life,” tweeted director and activist DuVernay. “Not to die on the street, murdered by a white cop’s knee on your neck. You deserve our tears, our prayers, our rage, our action. We must act — for you — and for all of those [where] no cameras are present. We must.”
Four officers were fired Tuesday after video of Floyd’s killing began circulating, but Chance the Rapper and several others demanded more justice.
“CHARGE AND CONVICT THE MURDERERS RESPONSIBLE FOR GEORGE FLOYD’S DEATH,” the “Cocoa Butter Kisses” artist wrote, amassing more than 200,000 likes.
Demonstrators blocked the 101 Freeway, vandalized two CHP cruisers and spray-painted graffiti on LAPD headquarters.
“Star Wars” actor Boyega, who passionately condemned racism Wednesday on Instagram Live, echoed Chance the Rapper’s sentiments.
“This just burns,” he wrote on Twitter. “Seems to be a never ending cycle. The murderers need to be charged severely. Even in the face of death this man was given zero empathy.”
Beyoncé, who keeps a low-key presence on social media, simply shared a photo of Floyd on the homepage of her website with the message “Rest in power.”
For her tribute, “Harriet” star Erivo conveyed her feelings through song, belting Donny Hathaway’s “Someday We’ll Be Free.”
“When I don’t have words I sing, when my heart hurts I sing, to watch yet another black body cut down hurt so I sing,” she wrote on Instagram.
Some celebrities, including “This Is Us” actress Mandy Moore, “Pose” star Indya Moore and “Skyscraper” singer Demi Lovato, called on their white peers to do their part and speak out about injustice.
“White friends: We can’t let our discomfort, ego, or belief that this work doesn’t include us, prevent us from acknowledging our privilege and that we have the burden of dismantling white supremacy,” Mandy Moore wrote. “We do. We [cannot] be complacent. We [cannot] be silent.”
See more reactions to Floyd’s death below.
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