Joyner Lucas // YouTube
Joyner Lucas is no stranger to poignantly voicing his opinions, sharing his perspective and turning to his music to unapologetically address an array of important topics, such as race relations, systematic oppression and social justice.
On Tuesday (Nov. 28), the Worcester, MA native released a powerful new track and an accompanying visual, with the near-7-minute song tackling the harsh realities surrounding the disconnect found in conversations pertaining to both race and racism in America.
The visual, which is well on its way to becoming viral, opens with a white male sporting a "Make America Great Again" hat who ferociously states his perspectives on race relations in the U.S., all while sitting across from a Black male who shares his rebuttal next. As the song progresses, the dialogue crafted by Lucas' impeccable songwriting gets increasingly heated and more difficult to stomach.
"With all due respect I don't have pity for you black n—s that's just how I feel," the character representing the alt-right begins. "Screaming Black Lives Matter but all you blacks would rather be deadbeats than pay your bills. Yelling n—a this and n—a that, call everybody a n—a and get a n—a mad, as soon as I say n—a then everyone react and call me racist and wanna swing on me 'cause I ain't black."
From there, the assumed Trump supporter runs through a list of reasons that often surface when racists are defending their oft hate-filled stances. After listening to the brutally intense onslaught and sitting across from a white man using the N-word like no tomorrow, the young man of color shares his reaction.
"With all disrespect I don't like you white muthaf—as that's just where I'm at," he responds. "Screaming 'All Lives Matter' is a protest to my protest what kinda s—t is that. And that's one war you will never win, the power in the word n—a is another sin, we shouldn't say it but we do that's just is what it is but that doesn't mean that you can say it just because you've got n—a friends."
The lyrically raw song and equally tense video sparks a much-needed dialogue, and is, although necessarily uncomfortable at times for both sides, an absolute must-watch. While Lucas does lay out the arguments from both sides and does so in a brutally honest way, he also ends the visual with an uplifting note showcasing the urgency of impactful change.
"We are all humans until race disconnected us," a message appears on screen. "Religion separated us, politics divided us and wealth classified us."
While it is not yet clear if the song will appear on a larger project from Lucas, its arrival, considering the political climate and current state of race relations, undisputedly arrives right on time.
Take a look at the powerful visual for "I'm Not Racist" below, and read the lyrics in full via Genius.