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R&B singer-songwriter Chrisette Michele released a new track titled “No Political Genius” following her performance at President Trump’s Liberty Ball on Jan. 20.
In the spoken-word single from her forthcoming album, Still American, Michele defiantly states, “Your hateful words won’t be my definition or my defining moment/Not my vision or my anger/I won’t own it/Nor my prison/Won’t condone it/They will be my ammunition to fight the system.”
Before the inauguration appearance, Michele wrote an open letter on her Rich Hipster website, saying she chose to participate in the inaugural ball to help unite the country: “I am here, representing you, because this is what matters.”
Musician Questlove and filmmaker Spike Lee criticized the singer for her decision to perform at President Trump’s inaugural ball, with Spike Lee declining to use her song “Black Girl Magic” in his upcoming Netflix series, She’s Gotta Have It.
Michele responded on the track by mentioning Questlove and Spike by name. She also referenced civil rights icon John Lewis and Ben Carson, Trump’s nominee for secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in her lyrics: “This is my standin’/For John Lewis and Ben Carson/Questlove, Spike Lee, and before them/I won’t divide now/That’s not smart now/God before me/I won’t back down/This is my damn America now.”
Interested in a similar story? Check out Bruce Springsteen’s comments on the Trump administration and the Women’s March on Washington: