In wake of the worldwide protests triggered by the killing of George Floyd., many have been wondering why Kanye West — who is notorious for sharing his own opinions — has not yet “spoke up” in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
From Lady Gaga to Meghan Markle, or Neil Young to Star Wars actor John Boyega, hundreds of celebrities have expressed their support towards Black communities as well as their anger about systemic racism, however, West’s silence has been dubbed as “deafening” by many.
Though the 42-year-old musician’s absence from social media has left some convinced that he’s simply “ignoring” the problem, West has just donated US$2 million to support the families of not only Floyd, but Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor too.
On Thursday, a representative for the often-generous rapper told CNN that the hefty sum will go towards funding legal fees for both Arbery’s and Taylor’s families, while also providing financial aid for struggling Black business owners based in his hometown, Chicago, Ill.
On top of that, West set up a tax-advantaged savings plan, or a “529 education plan” to help cover future college tuition fees for Floyd’s 6-year-old daughter, Gianna Floyd.
Floyd, a Black man, was killed on May 25 after a white police officer kneeled on his neck for nine minutes during an arrest in Minneapolis. He was 46.
His death, along with that of Arbery’s and Taylor’s, has helped to renew calls to fight systemic racism and put an end to police brutality across not only the U.S., but the entire world.
Arbery, another Black man, was violently killed on Feb. 23, after being chased down by two white men — a father and son — near Brunswick, Ga. He was 25.
Taylor was a Black woman and an aspiring nurse/EMT. She was shot to death by local police in her Louisville, Ky., home on March 13. Her 27th birthday would have been this Friday.
Donating funds to the families of these victims wasn’t all the Flashing Lights hit-maker did in support of Black communities, however.
Later on Thursday evening, West marched alongside student protesters against the Chicago Public Schools, demanding that they terminate a $33 million contract with the Chicago Police Department, according to ABC7.
“We’re out here because CPS would rather put $33 million into keeping police in schools than $33 million into resources for our youth,” a Taylore Norwood told the Chicago-based outlet.