Sometimes life really does imitate art. Case in point: John Boyega, the actor who plays a stormtrooper-turned-Resistance-fighter in “Star Wars,” recently gave an impassioned speech on Black lives at a Black Lives Matter protest in London.
“Black lives have always mattered,” Boyega exclaimed to an enthusiastic crowd. “We have always been important. We have always meant something. We have always succeeded regardless. And now is the time. I ain’t waiting!”
At one point, Boyega addressed the Black men in the crowd and begged them to “take care of Black women.”
— the (Original) Melanated Mystic (@HunnitAcreWoods) June 4, 2020
“They are our hearts,” he said in tears. “They are our future. We cannot demonize our own. We are the pillars of the family. Imagine this: A nation that is set up with individual families that are thriving, that are healthy, that communicate, that raise their children love, have a better rate of becoming better human beings. And that’s what we need to create. Black men, it starts with you.”
During his speech, Boyega told fellow protestors that he wasn’t afraid of putting his career on the line to fight for what he believed was right.
“Look, I don’t know if I’m going to have a career after this, but f*** that,” Boyega said. “Today is about innocent people who were halfway through their process. We don’t know what George Floyd could have achieved, we don’t know what Sandra Bland could have achieved, but today we’re going to make sure that won’t be an alien thought to our young ones.”
Thankfully, it doesn’t look like Boyega has to choose between being a successful actor and fighting for his beliefs.
After Boyega’s speech went viral, Lucasfilm — the entertainment company behind the iconic “Star Wars” franchise — posted on Twitter that it “stands with John Boyega.”
— Star Wars (@starwars) June 3, 2020
“John Boyega, you are our hero,” the company said.
Director Jordan Peele also responded to Boyega’s remark, writing, “We got you, John.”
Fans have also rallied behind Boyega.
“John Boyega plays a bigger role in real life than Finn does in Star Wars,” one person said.
“John Boyega dead ass had me teary eyed for the first time in a while,” another person wrote. “That’s pure passion, anger, frustration, and love straight from his heart.”
Activism isn’t limited to standing on the frontlines. Here are places you can donate to help the Black Lives Matter movement and the protestors.
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