The show must be paused. Britney Spears posted on Instagram ahead of Blackout Tuesday on June 1, explaining to her followers that she’s doing what she can to help the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of George Floyd‘s death. Britney, 38, posted a lengthy message attached to gorgeous, powerful image from artist Danica Gim. “What the world needs now is love….. my heart breaks for my friends in the black community…. and for everything going on in our country. Right now I think we all should do what we can to listen…. learn… do better…. and use our voices for good,” Britney wrote.
“To start I will be participating in #BlackoutTuesday tomorrow….. I won’t be posting on social media and I ask you all to do the same,” she continued. “We should use the time away from our devices to focus on what we can do to make the world a better place…. for ALL of us !!!!! PS if you’d like to help…. text FLOYD to 55156 and donate to organizations like #BlackLivesMatter if you are able to. God Bless You ALL !!!! #TheShowMustBePaused”.
The hashtag #TheShowMustBePaused was created by Atlantic Records senior directors of marketing Brianna Agyemang and Jamila Thomas, who are both black, in reaction to “the long-standing racism and inequality that exists from the boardroom to the boulevard.” Their movement, the executives said, is in response to the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and “other black citizens at the hands of police.” It comes in conjunction with the June 2 Blackout Tuesday efforts. Social Media users, including celebrities are only posting black squares to their accounts before going silent on the platforms for the day.
Some of music’s biggest stars are joining Britney on Blackout Tuesday. Billie Eilish posted an impassioned message on Instagram on June 1, calling for justice. Lil Yachty posted a black square on June 2, as did Katy Perry, Drake, Mariah Carey, Diddy, Jamie Fox, Ariana Grande, and DJ Khaled. Protests have erupted across the United States following George Floyd’s killing at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota and May 25.
Video footage from the incident showing now-fired white police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on the Black man’s neck for nine minutes as he repeatedly told him he couldn’t breathe. He became unresponsive and died at the hospital. Chauvin was arrested and charged with third degree murder after massive national outrage. Cities from Minneapolis, to Chicago, to Brooklyn, and Los Angeles have seen massive demonstrations and clashes with police. Stars like Chrissy Teigen and Kim Kardashian are helping pay the bail money and medical bills for arrested and injured protesters.