Kim Kizyma
Graphic Designer + Creative Technologist


Blog Posts and Ideas by Kim Kizyma

Please stop everything you're doing and watch this

— Joyner Lucas

Watching videos on YouTube is a part of my day to day life. I spend a decent amount of time surfing YouTube on my Apple TV on the weekends just cause I have more time to dedicate to it. Today, I stumbled across a video that I wish I had watched sooner. I think my coworker sent it to me a while ago but I never remembered to actually watch it.

Warning: this video will make you uncomfortable. If it doesn't make you uncomfortable, you really should probably ask yourself why you and how you are comfortable with it...

The below video is currently at 59+ million views. It was published on YouTube on November 28, 2017. It's an extremely politically charged song and video that everyone should watch. It's a rap song by Joyner Lucas. (Note: he is not in the video himself.)

The video is insane. So well produced. The actors are extremely powerful and animate. It has to be the most though-provoking video and song I've heard in a lonnnnnnng time.

"With all due respect I don't have pity for you black n—s that's just how I feel," the character representing the alt-right begins. "Screaming Black Lives Matter but all you blacks would rather be deadbeats than pay your bills. Yelling n—a this and n—a that, call everybody a n—a and get a n—a mad, as soon as I say n—a then everyone react and call me racist and wanna swing on me 'cause I ain't black."

From there, the assumed Trump supporter runs through a list of reasons that often surface when racists are defending their oft hate-filled stances. After listening to the brutally intense onslaught and sitting across from a white man using the N-word like no tomorrow, the young man of color shares his reaction.

"With all disrespect I don't like you white muthaf—as that's just where I'm at," he responds. "Screaming 'All Lives Matter' is a protest to my protest what kinda s—t is that. And that's one war you will never win, the power in the word n—a is another sin, we shouldn't say it but we do that's just is what it is but that doesn't mean that you can say it just because you've got n—a friends."

The lyrically raw song and equally tense video sparks a much-needed dialogue, and is, although necessarily uncomfortable at times for both sides, an absolute must-watch. While Lucas does lay out the arguments from both sides and does so in a brutally honest way, he also ends the visual with an uplifting note showcasing the urgency of impactful change (Revolt TV).

The thoughtful placement of the two actors and the juxtaposition of the poles around them that show the divide of the two is so perfect.

The video offers the idea that if everyone heard everyone else's side of the story, we could understand. This is absolutely true. The problem here is that not everyone has the ears to listen to the "other side." We have to actively, consciously listen. We have to WANT to know. We just have to be willing to listen without interruption. It sounds easy, but it seems it isn't. We have so much work to do.