Music icon Justin Timberlake weighed into the current national debate on racial justice in a social media post Monday, arguing for the removal of Confederate monuments and providing his theory on why protests of racism in America are interpreted as “protesting America itself.”
On Monday, the world-famous singer shared a post from the ACLU about former Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest in which he called for the removal of all Confederate monuments.
“When we protest racism in America, people think we are protesting America itself. Why is that the reaction? Because America was built by men who believed in and benefitted from racism. Plain and simple. If we plan to move forward, these confederate monuments must come down,” he tweeted.
When we protest racism in America, people think we are protesting America itself. Why is that the reaction? Because America was built by men who believed in and benefitted from racism. Plain and simple.
If we plan to move forward, these confederate monuments must come down. https://t.co/j2IgZ8Nr7D
— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) July 6, 2020
Timberlake’s post on American white supremacy comes several weeks after he declared that “black people in America are not safe.”
“The system needs to change… it has repeatedly shown us that Black people in America are not safe. I’ll follow up with more resources and ways to help. Continue to SAY THEIR NAMES. [Black Lives Matter],” said Timberlake.
The characterization of America as a fundamentally white supremacist nation has become a popular talking point since the Black Lives Matter protests took root nationwide.
On July 4, former 49ers quarterback and Black Lives Matter activist Colin Kaepernick even said that Independence Day was a “celebration of white supremacy.”
“Black [people] have been dehumanized, brutalized, criminalized [and] terrorized by America for centuries, [and] are expected to join your commemoration of ‘independence,’ while you enslaved our ancestors,” Kaepernick tweeted. “We reject your celebration of white supremacy [and] look forward to liberation for all.”
Last week, actor Danny Glover said that the police are the guardians of white supremacy.
“We see the actual violence because the police is what it is. It’s the last line of defense for white supremacy. That’s what the police represents. They don’t protect African Americans,” he said. “You can make an argument that the institutional violence has its roots in so many different ways. The violence that we see now that is acted out on the physical body of George Floyd has been the kind of violence that is engrained within the American idea of its culture, in its own subtlety, since the first Africans were brought here. So it’s 400 years of violence. It’s not just now!”
Jon Stewart, former host of “The Daily Show,” said last month that police effectively serve as the “border patrol” of a segregated society.
“The police are, in some respects, a border patrol, and they patrol the border between the two Americas. We have that so that the rest of us don’t have to deal with it. Then that situation erupts, and we express our shock and indignation,” Stewart said. “There’s always this begrudging sense that black people are being granted something, when it’s white people’s lack of being able to live up to the defining words of the birth of the country that is the problem. There’s a lack of recognition of the difference in our system.”