MUSIC: THE AFRICAN DIASPORA WEAPON
By: Mae Sulonteh
(3 Min Read)
Gather around everyone, as I take you on a journey 6,613 miles away. Where the weather is tropical and the streets linger of music near and far, all hours of the day. A land that is portrayed as dirt fields and clay huts but is full of euphoria. I am sure in the past few weeks we have all briefly skimmed or seen the hashtag, #ENDSARS or #ENDSWAT. What does it mean? Who does it affect and what is really going on over there?
SARS or Special Anti-Robbery Squad was created to protect Nigerian civilians from crimes that are associated with armed robbery. People in Nigeria are protesting to end SARS because it has now become a corrupt unit that abuses civilians and thrives off extortion. Videos are circulating all over Twitter of peaceful protestors being shot at or individuals coming forward to share past or murderous experiences. The people of Nigeria are challenging their President Muhammadu Buhari to release an official executive order to dissolve SARS and any other the agency’s they intend to put in place. The unanimous goal is to end all forms of police brutality and demand equal pay for workers and a more progressive nation.
Although it's hard to imagine or empathize with something not happening around you, music has a peculiar way of breaking a language barrier. To express emotion, educate, breach bridges and build awareness. The playlist titled, EmergenC, not only sheds light on the corruption of government officials, it also paints vivid pictures of daily struggles, and perseverance of life, abuse of women and liberty. It comprises numerous artists from the Afrobeats pioneers like Fela Kuti, Falz, Burna Boy, EBONY, Bucky Raw and many more. From beginning to end the message is left with its listener. Rather than standing in silence or guilt-tripping celebrities to utilize their platforms or just strollin over these tweets, we ask everyone to stand in solidarity with Africa by educating yourself further, repost and retweet and sign petitions.
“If not us, who?
If not now, when?”
October 29, 2020