Everyone remembers the ALS Ice Bucket challenge, right, with celebrities challenging their peers to participate and many did? It was a very successful campaign that went viral, raising over US$1,000,000.
I think everyone was impressed by the viral speed and spread of this campaign.
In another take — in reaction to the recent wave of racist based killings by the police, even though there is a long history of this occurring in the United States — actor Samuel L. Jackson has stepped up with a new challenge.
In case you’ve been living under a white-coloured rock, the killing of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Tamir Rice (for example, as there are many examples) has caused a spasm of demonstrations against police-based racist violence and murder from Miami to Oakland to Ferguson to New York.
These demonstrations have shut down the interstate highway system across America and prompted protests and die-ins as far away as Toronto and Paris (for example, as there are many examples).
One estimate counts as high as a 140 cities across the world who have participated in some sort of demonstration. And more are surely to come. You can follow all the action on Twitter as #BlackLivesMatter
On his Facebook page and in a Youtube video yesterday, Jackson essentially challenges other celebrities to sing “We ain’t gonna stop, till people are free” song.
Here are the lyrics so you can learn the song, too (not that I’m a celebrity, FYI):
“I can hear my neighbor cryin’ ‘I can’t breathe’
Now I’m in the struggle and I can’t leave.
Callin’ out the violence of the racist police.
We ain’t gonna stop, till people are free.
We ain’t gonna stop, till people are free.”
I know I’m gonna be learning this song ASAP.
You can watch the video challenge here or see below so you can hear the challenge and the tune.
Let’s see if any celebrities pick up the gauntlet.
Photo is of Toronto’s most recent #BlackLivesMatter rally. Photo credit h/t to Beth Jordan.