Long before Samuel L. Jackson become the critically acclaimed actor and celebrity that we all have grown to know and love, he was an activist in the Civil Rights Movement. And now, he’s made a powerful statement in light of the current protests calling for the end of police violence. Jackson posted a video on his Facebook page urging all the celebrities that participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to now sing a song inspired by Eric Garner and call out the violence of racist police. Watch it below:



The post’s description is “Seeking more singers!!” and the song, which Jackson calls “We ain’t gonna stop till people are free” has an easy-to-follow verse. The lyrics go:
”I can hear my neighbor crying ‘I can’t breathe’
Now I’m in the struggle and I can’t leave
Callin’ out the violence of the racist police.
We ain’t gonna stop, till people are free.
We ain’t gonna stop, till people are free.”

The ALS Bucket Challenge raised over $23 million this year, partly due to a slew of celebrities participating. And now Jackson calls on those celebrities to rally for a powerful cause that deserves more support.

It’s reminiscent of Orlando Jones’ Bucket Challenge video back in August, where he poured a bucket of bullet shell casings, not ice, over his head. This was back in response to what had happened in Ferguson, which has even more uproar nowadays. But Jones discussed in his video that although he will gladly support and donate to the ALS Association, he wanted to use his power as a voice in the social sphere to talk about the people who have fought for human rights and draw attention to gun violence. He has a powerful moment where he speaks about challenging himself and says, “I’m challenging myself to listen without prejudice, to love without limits, and to reverse the hate. So that’s my challenge to me. And hopefully you’ll accept this challenge to.”

It’s sometimes hard to swallow, but celebrities have a very influential voice. They have the ability to reach millions of people which can’t even compare to some political powers. This weekend I witnessed tens of thousands of protesters flood the streets of New York and raise their voices in unity and it was powerful. But Samuel L. Jackson’s Facebook video already has over 1.3 million views, over 40 thousand likes and already people responding by singing his song.

Whatever your stance may be in politics or the social injustice Jackson and Jones speak of in their own videos, they got people to listen, to hear a passionate statement, and form reactions to it. When Jackson urges celebrities to do what they did in raising awareness for ALS, he is asking them to speak. Speak up for something that is important to them, so that others can hear, and hopefully sing along.

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