Rihanna, Taylor Swift and More Stars Support Blackout Tuesday


Celebrities are taking part in Blackout Tuesday.

Social media users are taking to Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to post pictures of black squares as symbols of solidarity with the black community.

The movement gained momentum after Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang launched #TheShowMustBePaused in response to the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and “countless other Black citizens at the hands of police,” the initiative’s website stated. According to the website, the movement was created “in observance of the long-standing racism and inequality that exists from the boardroom to the boulevard.” The music executives made it clear they would not be conducting business as usual on June 2 and encouraged other leaders in the industry to do the same.

“It is a day to take a beat for honest, reflective, and productive conversation about what actions we need to collectively take to support the Black community,” a message on the website stated. 

The movement grew and soon people beyond the music industry were participating in the social media blackout.

Rihanna showed her support and her brand, Fenty, did, as well.

“We are not staying silent and we are not standing by,” a statement from the company read. “The fight against racial inequality, injustice, and straight up racism doesn’t stop with financial donations and words of support. In solidarity with the black community, our employees, our friends, our families, and our colleagues across industries, we are proud to take part in #blackouttuesday.”

The organization then announced it would be closing its business globally for the full day.  “This is not a day off, this is a day to reflect and find ways to make real change,” the statement continued. “This is a day to #pullup.”

However, Lil Nas X believed the initiative would “slow down” the momentum.

“I know y’all mean well but… bro saying stop posting for a day is the worst idea ever,” the “Old Town Road” artist tweeted, later adding, “I just really think this is the time to push as hard as ever. I don’t think the movement has ever been this powerful. We don’t need to slow it down by posting nothing. We need to spread info and be as loud as ever.”

He also wrote that “this is not helping up” and that people “need to see what’s going on.” 

“Not tryna be announcing but what if we posted donation and petitions links on Instagram all at the same time instead of pitch black images,” he wrote.

In addition, some celebrities including Kehlani, Lizzo and Kumail Nanjiani, urged participants to not use the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter along with their posts for a good reason. 

“Hey everybody, when you post your black square, please don’t use the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter because it is flooding the hashtag search with just black pictures instead of information,” the “Truth Hurts” artist said. “So if you’re going to post a black square, post a black square and say it but don’t hashtag it.”

“E! stands in solidarity with the black community against systemic racism and oppression experienced every day in America,” the network said in a statement on May 31. “We owe it to our black staff, talent, production partners and viewers to demand change and accountability. To be silent is to be complicit. #BlackLivesMatter.”

 





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