I’m normally not the person to sit down and watch an entire award show, I honestly get tired of looking at all of the dresses and listening to the pre-written speeches. However, this awards show was filled with many powerful social messages that made me a bit more appreciative of the Oscar’s.
It fills me with joy that in the year of 2015, Silence seems to be a thing of the past. I am so proud of Common and John Legend for using their acceptance speech for best original song for "Glory" as an opportunity to speak out on the injustices that African American people endure on a daily basis. If you missed the Oscar’s, here is a quote from John Legend’s speech. “Selma is now because the struggle for justice is right now. We live in the most incarcerated country in the world. There are more black men under correctional control today than there were in slavery in 1850.”
Not only was John Legend’s speech a call to action, it was an amplifier used against the silence that so many Americans are used to when it comes to topics about Race and America. Racism is alive and thriving in this nation because people are not having conversations and instead are sitting in silence. A silence doused with blatant disregard, ignorance, and humiliation that should no longer be tolerated in 2015. Institutional racism is systematically keeping minorities on the lower end of the socioeconomic spectrum. The war against drugs, the school-to-prison pipeline, the stop and frisk policies, the three strikes law, and countless other systems continues to separate African Americans from their Caucasian counterparts. The struggle for racial justice is not simply part of our history, but is as urgent now as ever. That is why I am so proud and thankful that John Legend had the courage to get in front of that podium and speak the truths that so many people are afraid to acknowledge.
Oh and by the way John Legend was telling the truth.