Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio vow to fight racism and "the disenfrancisement of Black America"
Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio have both pledged to fight racism as protests continue around the world.
Read more: How to support Black Lives Matter and anti-racist organisations if you can’t protest
Protestors began to take to the streets last week after George Floyd died while being arrested by Minneapolis police.
The actors have now spoken out separately in the wake of the protests. Depp shared a video of a speech by Killer Mike on his Instagram page, posting it with a lengthy caption.
“There is no way to make sense of what is senseless,” he wrote. “There is no way to restore a life that has been taken. Just as there is no way to un-break a heart that is broken. What we can do is make a vow to ourselves that racism and the ignorance inherent in such judgmental ugliness that it gives birth to, is NO LONGER AN OPTION!!! THERE MUST BE A CHANGE!!! DEMAND IT!!!!”
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As the majority of American people, our global community and our extended family of humans helplessly watched a man die on television… I too, was exposed to the atrocity of blatant barbarism, ruthless cruelty and unmitigated lack of humanity. A handcuffed man, pleading for his life lay prone with the full weight of a man sworn to defend the peace on his neck. The victim of this heinous act of cowardice, George Floyd, told the officers that he could not breathe. As he called for his dead mother, how could our collective hearts not break as his face was ground and mashed firmly into the pavement by those sworn to protect him, and all of us? Justice, I desperately hope, will address the horror of Officer Chauvin’s nonchalance and indifference to his participation in the agony, suffering and ultimately the murder of our fellow traveler George Floyd in a grotesque illustration of the abuse of power!!! There is no way to make sense of what is senseless. There is no way to restore a life that has been taken. Just as there is no way to un-break a heart that is broken. What we can do is make a vow to ourselves that racism and the ignorance inherent in such judgmental ugliness that it gives birth to, is NO LONGER AN OPTION!!! THERE MUST BE A CHANGE!!! DEMAND IT!!!! My dear friend and brother, Killer Mike – (Run The Jewels), is a brilliant musician, artist, activist for social justice and the son of an Atlanta Policeman. He is also, one of the kindest, most caring and loving human beings that I’ve ever had the pleasure and honor to know!!! I beg everyone to listen to the remarks of this true statesman. True statesmen have never been so needed, and they’ve never been in such short supply. With All Love, JD
He went on to praise the rapper as “a brilliant musician, artist, [and] activist for social justice” and urged his followers to “listen to the remarks of this true statesman”.
DiCaprio, meanwhile, shared a graphic that read: “I commit to listen, learn and take action”. In the caption, he continued: “I am dedicated to end the disenfranchisement of Black America, that has been present for too long. I will support those individuals, organisations and coalitions that are committed to bring about long-term change.”
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I commit to listen, learn and take action. I am dedicated to end the disenfranchisement of Black America, that has been present for too long. I will support those individuals, organizations and coalitions that are committed to bring about long-term change. I will be donating personally to each of the following organizations. Please, join me, in following and learning from the organizations below. Color of Change – @ColorofChange Fair Fight Action – @FairFightAction The NAACP – @NAACP Equal Justice Initiative – @eji_org
The actor added that he would be donating to Color Of Change, Fair Fight Action, the NAACP, and the Equal Justice Initiative.
According to an independent autopsy, Floyd’s death was caused by his blood and airflow being cut off from his brain, causing mechanical asphyxia. Derek Chauvin, the officer who kept his knee pressed on the man’s neck for nearly nine minutes, has been sacked and charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter.
The three other police officers involved in Floyd’s arrest have also been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder, and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.