Celebs Are Speaking Up to Denounce Hate and Spread Love In Wake of Charlottesville Turmoil
If you've read the news lately, you're probably well aware of the violent outbreak from a "Unite the Right" white supremacist rally that took place on Saturday in Charlottesville, VA. The incident led to the deaths of three people, including two state troopers and a counter protestor. Dozens were left injured.
Several celebrities have taken to social media to share their outrage and disappointment about not only the violence itself but the response that's followed. The hateful events have spawned a greater divide among Americans and beyond. So, while it's easy to focus on all the negativity circling around, take a closer look at these stars who are using their voice and influence to promote love, equality, and unity instead. (Related: 25 Things We Can All Agree On-When We Need Unity the Most)
A common theme to emerge from these events is a call to embrace each other despite our differences. "Black, Muslim, gay, bisexual, trans, etc. you are perfect the way you are and you ARE LOVED," Demi Lovato recently wrote on Instagram with a photo of a Stop the Hate sign. "Do not listen to evil no matter how loud it gets," she continued. "I am with you during this time and things will change."
Lady Gaga mirrored similar emotions saying: "I know we are not created to hate each other, but to help & love."
While seeing the violence on TV might make the dangers and bigotry shown in Virgina seem like worlds away, celebrities called for action, reminding people about the importance of counteracting the dangerous words with love. In an effort to stand up against the hate and deliver a more united, peaceful community, celebs such as Jessica Alba called for action. "Enough is Enough," wrote the actress on Instagram. "Start with you. Let your voice be the one that changes the people around you. Start today. Be a truth teller. Speak truth to power. Be a freedom fighter. Fight the good fight. I love you."
Similarly, Olivia Wilde shared a message from her journalist mother saying: "Let's stand up for the targets of the hate groups who have descended on Charlottesville. This weekend, spend money at a minority-owned business. Give generously to a charity that supports immigrant and African-Americans. Encourage law enforcement to guard the rights of everyone in the streets, including the counter-protestors and potential victims of the Alt-right."
Hozier tweeted his support for those who were brave enough to stand next to and fight against the white supremacists during the riots, saying he was with them in spirit.
Some celebs used images and videos to illustrate how they feel about the unrest. Zendaya shared video footage of the conflict on Instagram, that has since gone viral. Academy-Award-winner Mahershala Ali posted a photo of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. being arrested by white officers to display the eerie similarities to the photos and nightly news reports so often seen today.
And yes, Hollywood is also banding together after President Trump's latest remarks during a press conference where he restated his initial beliefs that "there was blame on both sides." In response: "When it comes to love, kindness, acceptance, and progress, I believe there is only one side," Ellen DeGeneres shared on Twitter, to which Joel Madden responded, "We are one."