ATLANTA — One of the most powerful moments during Friday night’s protests came from Atlanta native and rapper Killer Mike.
The artist, also known as Mike Render, has been a vocal civil rights advocate over the years, and Friday, he was joined by fellow rapper T.I. and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms to address people protesting the death of George Floyd.
Mike started by saying that he is the son of an Atlanta police officer, and he has family members who are police officers.
“I’ve got a lot of love and respect for police officers,” he said.
He went on to talk about the responsibility he believes Americans have to push for change.
“We don’t want to see Targets burning. We want to see the system that sets up for systemic racism burned to the ground," he said.
“It is your duty not to burn your own house down for anger with an enemy ... We have to be better than this moment," Mike said. "We have to be better than burning down our own homes because if we lose Atlanta what else do we have?”
Mike bluntly told demonstrators to go home and rethink about what they’re doing, WSB-TV reported.
“I want you to go home. I want you to talk to 10 of your friends. I want you guys to come up with real solutions," he said. “If you sit in your homes ... instead of burning your home to the ground, you will have time to properly plot, plan, strategize and organize and mobilize in effective ways.”
He continued: “Two of the most effective ways is first taking your butt to the computer and making sure you fill out your census so that people know who you are and where you are. The next thing is making sure you exercise your political bully power and going to local elections and beating up the politicians you don’t like.”
“It is time to ‘beat up’ prosecutors you don’t like at the voting booth. It is time to hold mayoral offices accountable, chiefs and deputy chiefs,” Mike said.
He also called out news network CNN.
“CNN -- Ted [Turner] did a great thing. I love CNN, I love Cartoon Network," he said. "But I’d like to say to CNN right now: ‘Karma’s a mother. Stop feeding fear and anger every day. Stop making people feel so fearful. Give them hope.'”
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