Celebrities Speak Out Over Death Of George Floyd
28 May 2020, 09:15 | Updated: 28 May 2020, 09:16
Lizzo, Beyoncé and Cardi B are among the celebrities speaking out over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died after being pinned down by his neck by white police officers in the US.
Celebrities have spoken out over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died after being pinned down by his neck by a white police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Beyoncé, Lizzo, Megan Thee Stallion, Ariana Grande, Harry Styles, Cardi B, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, Khalid, Taylor Swift, Doja Cat, Demi Lovato, Halsey, Camila Cabello and many more stars have expressed their shock over the death.
There have been protests across the US following Mr Floyd's death, which many Americans have cited as the latest example of systemic police brutality against African American citizens.
Police were filmed kneeling on the handcuffed man's neck for at least eight minutes, despite Mr Floyd saying he couldn't breathe. The 46-year-old security guard was later pronounced dead in hospital.
Megan Thee Stallion and Khalid were among the celebrities to share a widely-circulated image, quoting what George Floyd said as he died: "Please I can't breathe. My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Everything hurts. They're going to kill me."
"We have an extremely, inherently racist and corrupt police system," Lizzo said on her Instagram.
"Now I'm not saying that every police officer is a racist person and a murderer but I am saying that at the core of the police organisation there is a system of racism and corruption."
Beyoncé paid her respects by changing the homepage of her website to a photo of Mr Floyd with the message: "Rest in Power George Floyd."
Cardi B posted a powerful tribute to Mr Floyd on Instagram, writing: "Enough is enough! What will it take ? A civil war ? A new president? Violent riots ? It’s tired ! I’m tired ! The country is tired !You don’t put fear in people when you do this you just show how coward YOU ARE ! And how America is really not the land of the free !"
Ariana Grande demanded justice for Mr Floyd's death, writing on her Instagram story: "Justice is not just about specific officers being arrested. it’s about dismantling the systems that make it possible."
Demi Lovato called on her followers - "especially white people" - to do more to fight racism and recognise privilege within society: "Do not let your discomfort surrounding social issues prevent you from speaking up for those IN DANGER.
"Until this STOPS COMPLETELY - THE BLACK COMMUNITY WILL CONTINUE TO LIVE IN DANGER. DO YOUR PART. THIS INVOLVES YOU TOO. #GeorgeFloyd, I hope you RIP because it isn’t fair so many didn’t do their part to ensure you lived in peace."
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This is not okay. And it will not stop until everyone does their part. Especially white people. I said it recently and I’ll say it again, do not let your discomfort surrounding social issues prevent you from speaking up for those IN DANGER. And reality is, until this STOPS COMPLETELY - THE BLACK COMMUNITY WILL CONTINUE TO LIVE IN DANGER. DO YOUR PART. THIS INVOLVES YOU TOO. #GeorgeFloyd, I hope you RIP because it isn’t fair so many didn’t do their part to ensure you lived in peace.
Doja Cat encouraged her 1.6 million followers to sign a petition calling for "Justice for George Floyd", which has close to half a million signatories, and shared a link to the Official George Floyd Memorial Fund.
The fund was set up by George's sister Philonise Flloyd to "cover funeral and burial expenses and to assist my family in the days to come as we continue to seek justice for George" and has so far raised over $360,000.
The incident began when officers were called to a report of a customer attempting to use a counterfeit $20 bill at a store. The four Minnesota police officers involved were fired on Tuesday afternoon and the FBI is now investigating.