If you were watching the BET Awards last night, then you know that Jesse Williams was given the 2016 BET Humanitarian Award. If you watched further, you would have heard this young gentleman render a powerful and thought-provoking speech. I was listening to him, and I immediately got engrossed in what he was saying; it flowed like spoken word poetry.
I must say, I always knew Jesse Williams was a woke brother, but if you didn’t know he was 100% in this movement, then you definitely found out last night with his speech. He said the things that needed to be said, he was unapologetic, raw and honest in every word he said. It’s one of the moments I can say I am glad I was watching BET at that moment to catch it when it aired, instead of hearing about it the next day, because it never grabs you the same way. Honestly, if you missed it, you need to find a YouTube clip like, NOW.
Below is a couple of my favorite parts of the speech:
“It’s kind of basic mathematics – the more we learn about who we are and how we got here, the more we will mobilize. ”
“But freedom is somehow always conditional here. “You’re free,” they keep telling us. But she would have been alive if she hadn’t acted so… free.”
“If you have no interest, if you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions to those who do. Sit down. ”
“We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold, ghettoizing and demeaning our creations then stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit.”
“The thing is though… the thing is that just because we’re magic doesn’t mean we’re not real. ”
I was able to find the transcript of the speech, and if you would like to read it, click here.