It’s been a heartbreaking and infuriating week when it comes to police violence. Two black men were shot and killed by police—first Alton Sterling in Louisiana, followed by Philando Castile in Minnesota. Then last night, five police officers were killed, and 12 shot in total during a protest in Dallas, Texas. I think we all have heavy hearts. Beyoncé called for a moment of silence at her Formation Tour concert last night, and penned a powerful open letter sharing her frustrations, feelings, and a call to action.
Beyoncé posted the above on her Instagram, pointing users to the longer statement on her website. The letter begins, “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 everyone to respect our lives.”
She continues in the poignant letter, “This is a human fight. No matter your race, gender or sexual orientation. This is a fight for anyone who feels marginalized, who is struggling for freedom and human rights.” She added, “Fear is not an excuse. Hate will not win.”
Beyoncé calls for us to channel our frustration into action and includes links for people to contact their politicians, and to protest for the innocent people killed this week. Her husband Jay-Z also released a powerful song expressing his thoughts called “Spiritual. “The song was actually penned in 2014 after the death of Mike Brown, but sadly the message still applies. Give it a listen.
Jay-Z and Beyoncé aren’t the only celebs speaking out about these tragedies and the #BlackLivesMatter movement. John Legend reacted to the murder of five police officers in Dallas last night by tweeting, “These Dallas shootings are horrific. Killing these officers is morally reprehensible and completely counterproductive to keeping us safe.” He added, “Being against cops killing is not equal to being for killing cops. We need peace in our streets.”
Katy Perry put her position as most-followed person on Twitter to good use, imploring her followers to watch the video of the horrific killing of Alton Sterling.
Demi Lovato kept her message simple with, “#PrayingforDallas #PrayingForPeace.”
We need to work together to peacefully protest this brutality. Fighting violence with violence is completely counterproductive. Let's work together to spread love and respect the lives of all.
What did you think of Beyoncé’s letter?
Carly Henderson is an Emmy-nominated host and producer of Hollywire's Weird This Week. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @CarlyHenderson_, and let her know about any strange stories or trends you'd like to see covered on the show!