Rapper Lecrae has penned an open letter in the Huffington Post titled “The Pains of Humanity Has Been Drianing Me,” inside the piece, the rapper deals with Black Lives Matter, police brutality, that he himself has been a victim of, and supporters who are now criticizing him for being vocal about the climate we live in today.
I was once told you shouldn’t waste time explaining yourself to people bent on misunderstanding you.
So, I won’t anymore.
I can’t anymore.
I’m a mess.
I’ve been grieving the loss of black lives since 2014…without consultation.
Been fighting critics and scrutiny since 2012.
I can’t even read comments on social media anymore.
All the slander is too much for any one person to digest.
They don’t get me.
I navigate different cultures daily, and I understand how people can make false assumptions because of their lack of interaction with the cultures I find myself in. But if they don’t frequent these spaces much, how can they rush to judgment?
I hit a serious low on tour at one point; I was done with American Christian culture. No voice of my own. No authenticity. I was a puppet. I’d seen so much fakeness from those who claimed to be my brothers and sisters that I didn’t even know how to talk to my Heavenly Father.
And then there was Mike Brown.
Then Eric Garner.
And then #______ and #________ and #_______.
People kept killing us.
As I shared my heart, my supporters turned on me even more—fans and friends. There was no empathy. Though some comments were just evil and hurtful, others were steeped in ignorance and lack of perspective.
They didn’t get it.
My mother, my relatives, and closest friends have risked their lives in the area of law enforcement and corrections, so I never have and never will say, “I HATE police.” I know that it’s a culture of its own with many nuances that the average person can’t grasp.
Still, I have had enough experience with and exposure to our policing system to know that it is extremely fractured and the infrastructure is far from fair and just. I’ve been pulled over before a show, spoken to like I was less than human, unlawfully searched for drugs, and left to put my destroyed car back together and make it to my show as the cops drove off.
I’ve had an officer place his knee on my throat as he told me to tell him where a gun (that I didn’t possess) was. My brother and fellow artist Trip Lee was outside ofone of his own concerts and was pushed around and had guns drawn on him because he fit a description. These are just a few of some of the MANY infractions I can name.
Does this indict all officers? No. But does the consistency of infraction tell me the system (not just a few individuals) is flawed? Yes.
That’s why I declare BLACK LIVES MATTER!
Understand there is a DISTINCT difference between the organization “BLM” and the sentiment “BLM.” My agreement with the sentiment is not my endorsement of the organization.
Rather, the statement encapsulates our societal woes as a people. I don’t condone violence or rioting for which BLM is so often blamed, and I don’t believe these isolated acts express the values of the BLM organization or the sentiment either. Yet, some people still think we are just “whining about the past.”
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