Director and actress Issa Rae has a few suggestions for those wondering, “what can I do?” in the fight against police brutality and police reform.
On June 2, the 35-year-old Rae took to her Instagram account and shared with her 2.7 million followers a number of groups she recommended supporting instead of just posting about the movement on social media. Those organizations included Black Lives Matter, Regional Bail Funds, Defund the LAPD, National Police Accountability Project, and Black Table Arts, just to name a few.
“What can I do?” Here are the initiatives we’re supporting and donating to across my teams,” Rae captioned the gallery of different organizations. She continued, “Join us in taking direct action to end police brutality in our communities. Links to all in bio.”
The “Insecure” creator has been very vocal in the past about her support for the Black community and even famously stated that she was “rooting for everybody Black” during an interview on the red carpet at the 2017 Emmys.
The actress has now doubled down on those sentiments and is speaking candidly about using her platform to bring awareness to social injustice. During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Rae described the driving force behind her activism. “I recognized that so many people felt anxious, overwhelmed, and aimless,” she explained.
She continued, “While I saw various anti-racism lists circulating, they each had like 30-50 broadly Black organizations, which is great, but a lot. So I wanted to consolidate my call to action to a few organizations that kept the focus and mission clear. For me, that mission is to end police brutality and killings.”
Rae also revealed that her list came together after she and her staff “discussed extensively and did the research.” She added that while they were already supporting and knew of the work done by groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and BLD PWR, Rae and her team wanted to support initiatives that held police accountable. Her objective is “to ultimately Defund the Police via the People’s Budget, and to aid protestors in the immediate time by providing bail money.”
Although the topic of police brutality against Black and brown people has been ongoing for years, it’s arguable that there’s been an increase in support for the movement following the death of George Floyd. Floyd, a Black man, tragically lost his life in May 2020 after a police officer kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes. The entire incident was caught on cell phone video, which sparked outrage and anti-racist protests across all 50 states and 13 countries worldwide. Floyd’s death also raised the topic of defunding the police.
Rae, who strongly supports allocating police budget to more social services, also revealed that she even supported “abolishing the police in the long run, and especially in communities that don’t benefit from police services.” However, the actress admitted that the country needs still needs a “comprehensive plan” because “too many people can’t see it, and too many people don’t care enough to educate themselves because they operate in a safe bubble.”