This year in America has been one of the more notable years for police brutality. Over 217 black people have been killed by police officers in 2016, with the deaths of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, Keith Lamont Scott and Terence Crutcher (among many others) still fresh in our minds.
In a new video PSA titled “Against The Wall,” singer and social activist Harry Belafonte provides a commentary on the racial bias in police shootings of black men and women, by getting a number of black celebrities and public figures looking like they’re being pushed up against a wall and getting arrested.
Michael B. Jordan, Danny Glover and Michael K. Williams are present throughout the four minute long video, their hands and faces pressed up against an actual wall (or a rug made to look like one), and looking towards the camera with sad and frustrated faces.
They offer no verbal commentary, their faces accompanied by a collection of police radio and 911 calls, in which you can hear snippets from the Castile, Crutcher and Trayvon Martin cases. There’s also news reports spliced in too, including one from Anderson Cooper, and the viral YouTube video of Nakia Jones, an Ohio cop.
“You cannot just go about, if it’s once or twice you can say it’s an accident or a coincidence, but when you have as large a population of murdered young men in the streets of America and they’re all black or of African American descent, I think there is somebody sending us a message,” Belafonte states at the beginning of the clip. “And we should respond to that message.”
The video then ends with Williams lying on the ground, presumably injured, and looking into the camera before closing eyes. A takeaway message appears before the screen goes to black: “Black is not a weapon.”