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Latinx music super star, Bad Bunny is breaking his silence in a lyrical song type statement. Benito Antonio Martinez Ocasio, “Bad Bunny,” went silent on May 19 to disconnect with the world, since releasing a new video and appearing on the cover of Rolling Stone. In an Exclusive interview with TIME, he spoke about the Black Lives Matter Movement.
In the days following Bad Bunny’s silence, George Floyed was killed by an officer while in custody of Minneapolis police. The inhumane death caused outrage across the country and internationally, igniting movements for reform and the end to racial injustices. Martinez is known to take politics head on including anti-corruption protests in his home of Puerto Rico, which caused Governor Ricardo Rossello to resign. He has also become a voice for the LGBTQ+ community when he dressed in drag for his latest music video, saying he has never felt more masculine.
Martinez exchanged emails with TIME for an interview in regards to Black Lives Matter. “There are many simple but powerful ways of helping,” he said, “such as teaching, educating your community, your family, [&] your friends.” He is currently isolating in Puerto Rico, but is reassuring it will not stop him from being a voice for change. Martinez said, “There are artists who only upload a photo or a basic message just to calm public pressure or to look ‘good. Not me… I want to go deeper and see in what way I can serve, how I can support the fight against a systematic monster that has been [around for] centuries.” He mentioned that it will be a long road, “It’s a problem that perhaps will not have been solved when I die, but at least I will know that I have contributed something for future generations that, with faith, will enjoy freedom and justice.”
Martinez is not the only latinx celebrity to speak about social injustices. Jennifer Lopez and Aaron Rodriguez protested in Los Angeles to stand in Solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter. Other celebrities such as Ariana Grande, George Lopez and Cardi B have joined the fight against social injustice. Many Latinx communities are protesting because systemic discrimination disproportionately affects them as well. Many latinos feel deeply rooted to the Black Lives Movement because public killings due to racism affected latinos across the west in the late 1870s and 1900s.
Crowds in Texas would gather in the thousands for live burnings and lynching of mexicans, who were also american citizens. Lynchings have been long associated with the African American Community in the South of the United States. Recently artifacts and records of latino lynchings in the west are resurfacing, causing many Latinx communities to revisit a gruesome past. Latinx ancestors were lynched for refusing to farm, accusations of theft, suspicion of witchcraft and refusing to entertain white settlers.
The African American community and the Latinx community have stood in solidarity for centuries, continuing to lean on each other for support during today’s protests. Bad Bunny commented on the president and his attitude towards Latinos. “The President of the United States has made it clear since the beginning of his presidency that discrimination against Latinos is more thatn present; he has given even more power to racism at this time.” Martinez says that both Latinos and Black people suffer the consequences in the struggle against racism.
When asked how this relates to him he said, “In the case of reggaeton music, we have always struggled against discrimination, and even though today it is the world’s number one Latino genre, we continue to suffer from that discrimination, both in the word for being Latino, and the Latino community itself for being a genre that ones from the street.”
Russell Ray is an outgoing high energy multimedia journalist/ producer, Actor, writer and AfterBuzz TV host. Russell has accreditations with TMZ and The NAACP Image Awards with a passion to bring you breaking news, entertainment segments and interviews.
Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, artist-friendly AfterBuzz TV is the world’s largest digital broadcast network and pop culture news platform, producing post-game ‘after-shows’ for nearly all favorite TV shows, interviewing cast and showrunners and providing the widest video, audio and article coverage of shows, content and influencers than any entertainment news platforms in existence
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