“Leave that up with the critics and laws and all that ol ‘explicative.’”
That isn’t necessarily a response someone would expect from an expert in regards to issues within the Black community. This statement was actually made by famous rapper Young Thug. While some may consider his comment offensive or even funny, it does bring up a good question: Should Black celebrities speak on the issues affecting the African American community?
There’s already a variety of famous Black people that speak on social issues pertaining to African Americans. Their comments, however, are usually only during periods of racial turmoil; specifically when Blacks are the victims of overt racism. The situations with Donald Sterling, Riley Cooper and Paula Deen are the first to come to many people’s mind. These celebrities usually criticize the racist briefly and then shift the conversation to the problem with Blacks. There are very few public figures who give genuine assessments of the problems within the community.
Some people argue that despite their fame, Black celebrities are not obligated to speak on issues within the community. They are paid to do a specific job and that’s it. The responsibility they have to address issues within the Black community is no more than any other person who’s not rich and famous. Others will argue that based on the unique predicament of African Americans within this country, these celebrities should to use their statuses as a platform to help with the problems.
Regardless of where anyone stands, they’d have to acknowledge the fact that most celebrities received their statuses from the same sources of power Blacks are often at odds with. The idea these figures would risk their success to challenge that power is unlikely. In fact, some will even defend it.
For this reason, it makes sense for Blacks to create and support media outlets dedicated to their own causes. The more control African Americans have on their media sources, the less dependent they are on public figures controlled by outside forces. These outlets can also serve as tools to challenge those using their status to defend White Supremacy.