Queen Bey delivers a call to action.
As Drake, Chris Brown, and other celebrities continue to speak out against police injustice in the wake of shootings caught on video, Beyoncé has penned a powerful open letter.
“We are sick and tired of the killings of young men and women in our communities,” she writes. “It is up to us to take a stand and demand that they ‘stop killing us.’ We don’t need sympathy. We need everyone to respect our lives.”
The letter asks all people to stand up and fight “against anyone who believes that murder or any violent action by those who are sworn to protect us should consistently go unpunished.”
“These robberies of lives make us feel helpless and hopeless,” she adds. “But we have to believe that we are fighting for the rights of the next generation, for the next young men and women who believe in good.”
Moreover, the “Formation” singer says that this should unite people from all walks of life. “This is a human fight,” she explains. “No matter your race, gender, or sexual orientation. This is a fight for anyone who feels marginalized, who is struggling for freedom and human rights.”
She also uses the letter to clarify her stance on law enforcement. “This is not a plea to all police officers,” she writes. “But toward any human being who fails to value life. The war on people of color and all minorities needs to be over. Fear is not an excuse. Hate will not win.”
She includes a prayer for the families of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, but also one “for an end to this plague of injustice in our communities.”
The call to action urges fans to “contact the politicians and legislators” in their areas so that their voices “will be heard.” She also provides links to contact your congressperson, to protest for Sterling, and to protest for Castile.
Sterling and Castile represent the most recent cases of black men being shot and killed by police officers. In separate incidents this week, Sterling was shot while being arrested and Castile was shot during a traffic stop. At least part of each fatal shooting was captured on video and their deaths are now being investigated.
On Thursday night, Beyoncé paid tribute to Sterling and Castile, along with many others, with a moment of silence during her “Formation World Tour” stop in Glasgow. There, she displayed the names of men and women who have been victims of similar police-involved incidents, including Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray, and Oscar Grant.