If you’re going to be for us, be for US – If you’re not, then DON’T ACT LIKE YOU ARE! These are just my sentiments of what came out of the commentary that Chicago Rapper Vic Mensa was saying about J.T a.k.a Justin Timberlake; but let’s rewind for a moment. So unless you were hidden up under a rock, this past Sunday night with no TV, let me give you a re-cap of why Vic Mensa tore into Justin Timberlake. Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams gave an awesome, inspiring and uplifting speech on Sunday night at the BET Awards – in which he referenced and discussed racism, cultural appropriation, investing in ourselves, myth of freedom, how we should stay mad and left us with the saying “Just because we’re magic, doesn’t mean we’re not real” in which has been the #1 hashtag around social media since Sunday.
It was very obvious that J.T. must have missed the whole concept of what Williams speech was referring to, due to the tweets that he sent out that night in which after referencing the fact of how truly inspired he was after hearing Jesse Williams’ speech, a tweeter responded asking Timberlake: “Does this mean you’re going to stop appropriating our music and culture?
Timberlake then responded with: “The more you realize that we are the same, the more we can have a conversation” – Wow! Really Justin?…
So, it’s for good reason and no wonder Chicago rapper Vic Mensa stepped in to elaborate further on the topic and how the 20/20 Experience singer need to think before he speaks. According to pitchfork this is how Mensa felt about the situation:
Our problem here is that Justin Timberlake himself–you know–is definitely benefiting from using black culture for his sound, his dance moves, his dancers, and blowing up off of it. But if you roll down Justin Timberlake’s Twitter for the past two years, which I just did, you see nothing that supports black people when it’s more difficult, when there’s a struggle. With everything that’s going on, and everybody that’s been killed by police on camera in the last couple of years, there’s no #BlackLivesMatter; there’s no “praying for Baltimore;” there’s no “praying for Flint,” you know, because that’s a dangerous subject for him to touch. And we’re not feeling him being down when it’s beneficial to him, and turning a blind eye when it could be dangerous.
Per xxlmag Mensa later stated how Black people are tired of feeling used and stated that if J.T. had expressed and/or approached the speech of Williams differently then he wouldn’t have suffered the backlash he is experiencing now. There’s an old saying that says “Don’t judge my journey until you have walked my path”. Although Timberlake may have seen the journey, but he has yet to walk the line; there’s much more to black culture than just copying the good things about our society, you also have to be with us when we go through the struggle because struggling is also a major part in who we are today.
Maybe Justin needs to take an “African-American History” class so the shoes he wears; rightfully can belong to him and not someone else because what might seem like a dress rehearsal for him; It’s REAL LIFE for US!