Bad Bunny Pens Powerful Lyrical Statement on Black Lives Matter Protests
By Liz Calvario
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Bad Bunny has broken his silence on the Black Lives Matter movement and nationwide protests against systemic racism and police brutality. Many fans were expecting and hoping that the Puerto Rican reggaetonero would speak out after George Floyd's fatal arrest last month and the subsequent demonstrations. However, Bad Bunny's social media remained untouched and silent since May 19.
Now, in a powerful lyrical statement published by Time magazine on Friday, the "Callaíta" singer is staying calladito no more, writing, "In a world like this, none of us can breathe."
"Forgive my silence. But I can’t even believe this is still happening. Maybe it’s because I’ve always seen people’s hearts and, in my house, I was always taught that we are all the same regardless of race, religion and surname; that we are all brothers/sisters," he writes in part. "I SWEAR I don’t feel well, and I don’t think I can express myself properly, I swear it hurts! It hurts to know that people are still being killed because of the color of their skin."
Prior to sharing the statement, Bad Bunny told the magazine, "There are many simple but powerful ways of helping, such as teaching, educating your community, your family, your friends. At the moment, we are working on where to contribute seriously, economically and humanely, using the resources we have to support and in some way be part of the #BlackLivesMatter movement."
Explaining that he is currently off social media, he noted, "I simply do not have a phone. But I know I can contribute much more from here and from the heart, as I always do."
"There are artists who only upload a photo or a basic message just to calm public pressure or to look ‘good.' Not me," he expressed. "I want to go deeper and see in what way I can serve, how I can support the fight against a systematic monster that has been [around for] centuries. It’s a problem that perhaps will not have been solved when I die, but at least I will know that I have contributed something for future generations that, with faith, will enjoy freedom and justice.
While reggaeton has also been called out for its ties to black history and allegations of anti-blackness, Bad Bunny said that reggaetoneros have "always struggled against discrimination, and even though today it is the world’s number one Latino genre, we continue to suffer from that discrimination, both in the world for being Latino, and in the Latino community itself for being a genre that comes from the street."
Bad Bunny -- who's championed the LGBTQ community and been part of the Puerto Rico's anti-corruption protests -- added that President Donald Trump "has made it clear since the beginning of his presidency that discrimination against Latinos is more than present; he has given even more power to racism at this time," adding that both Latinxs and black people suffer from his words and actions.
Read his full lyrical statement in English and Spanish, below:
Forgive my silence.
But I can’t even believe this is still happening.
Maybe it’s because I’ve always seen people’s hearts and, in my house, I was always taught that we are all the same regardless of race, religion and surname; that we are all brothers/sisters.
I SWEAR I don’t feel well, and I don’t think I can express myself properly,
I swear it hurts! It hurts to know that people are still being killed because of the color of their skin.
LIVING IN A WORLD LIKE THIS, NONE OF US CAN BREATHE!
F–K DONALD TRUMP!
PRESIDENT OF RACISM!
YOUR HATE AND TYRANNY,
DON’T STOP THE FIGHT,
DON’T LOWER YOUR FISTS,
KNOW THAT WE ARE ALL HOME,
THAT THIS IS OUR LAND.
I remember the white boy with the “bad hair,” that’s what they would say,
just like they did to my black neighbors, and they believed it too.
Bad? Bad are those who still think that way,
WITHOUT REALIZING THAT THE SAME BLOOD RUNS THROUGH OUR VEINS.
Who taught you to be this way?
Why don’t you seek change?
MAYBE THE PRESS IS TO BLAME FOR NEVER SHOWING THE TRUTH
OR HISTORY CLASSES THAT DON’T TEACH US A REAL ACCOUNT OF EVENTS
AND SHOW BLACK SLAVES WITH SUCH NORMALCY
AND WHO STILL CALL THIS BRUTALITY A “DISCOVERY.”
TO MURDER AND HUMILIATE THOSE OF ANOTHER SKIN COLOR,
THAT 500 YEARS LATER,
THAT PAIN KEEPS DRAGGING ON.
HATE DOESN’T STOP HATE,
IT JUST MAKES IT WORSE.
IN A WORLD LIKE THAT, WHO WANTS TO GIVE THEIR LOVE?
IF IT WAS UP TO ME, NONE OF THIS WOULD HAVE HAPPENED,
IF IT WAS UP TO ME, NONE OF THIS WOULD HAVE EXISTED.
YOU CAN’T KNOW SOMEONE BY SIMPLY LOOKING AT THEIR FACE,
YOU CAN’T KNOW SOMEONE BY ONLY LOOKING AT THEIR OUTER APPEARANCE.
FORGIVE ME THAT MY ANGER TODAY IS SILENT.
FORGIVE ME FOR FEELING IMPOTENT TODAY.
I SWEAR TO YOU I LOVE YOU AND I WILL ALWAYS STAND BY MY PEOPLE,
BUT WHAT’S IMPORTANT IS THAT YOU GUYS ALWAYS FIGHT FOR WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN.
NEVER WAIT FOR ARTISTS, OR FOR FICTITIOUS HEROES, YOU ARE THE ONES WHO HAVE THE POWER!!! TEACH YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS TO RESPECT AND LOVE REGARDLESS OF SKIN COLOR. EDUCATE THOSE WHO DO NOT SEEM TO KNOW ABOUT THE HISTORY OF SUFFERING AND STRUGGLE THAT BLACK PEOPLE HAVE ENDURED, ABOUT THE INJUSTICES WE CARRIED FOR CENTURIES. MAYBE WE WON’T CHANGE THE WORLD TODAY, BUT TODAY WE CAN WORK ON MAKING A DIFFERENCE FOR TOMORROW.
Perdonen mi silencio
pero ni estoy creyendo lo que pasa,
quizás es porque solo veo corazones mas me enseñaron en mi casa,
que todos somos iguales sin importar la raza, religión, apellido;
que a un hermano, se le abraza.
LES JURO que no me siento bien, ni bien me puedo expresar,
les juro que me duele y me duele hasta pensar.
Que hoy aun por el color de piel de alguien, ¿lo puedan matar?
EN UN MUNDO ASÍ, YO TAMPOCO PUEDO RESPIRAR
F–K DONALD TRUMP!
PRESIDENTE DEL RACISMO,
TU ODIO Y TIRANÍA,
ESO SÍ ES TERRORISMO.
QUE LA LUCHA NO PARE,
QUE NADIE BAJE SU PUÑO,
QUE SEPAN QUE ESTAMOS EN CASA,
QUE ESTE ES NUESTRO TERRUÑO.
Recuerdo; al niño que tenía “pelo malo” le decían,
igual que a mis vecinitos negros, y ellos también se lo creían.
malo? malo es aquel que piensa eso todavía,
SIN SABER QUE POR SUS VENAS CORRE LA MISMA SANGRE QUE LA MÍA.
¿Quién te enseñó a ser así?
¿Por qué no quieres cambiar?
quizás ES CULPA DE LA PRENSA POR NUNCA DECIR LA VERDAD,
O LAS CLASES DE HISTORIA QUE NO CUENTAN LA REALIDAD,
Y MUESTRAN A LOS NEGROS DE ESCLAVOS CON TANTA NORMALIDAD,
Y DESCUBRIMIENTO LE LLAMARON, A LA BRUTALIDAD.
DE ASESINAR Y DE HUMILLAR A LOS DE OTRO COLOR,
QUE 500 AÑOS DESPUÉS,
SIGUE ARRASTRANDO EL DOLOR.
EL ODIO NO MATA AL ODIO, ESO LO HACE PEOR.
PERO EN UN MUNDO ASÍ, ¿QUIÉN QUIERE DAR SU AMOR?
SI FUERA POR MÍ, NADA DE ESTO PASARA,
SI FUERA POR MÍ, NADA DE ESTO EXISTIERA.
NADIE CONOCE A NADIE POR MIRARLO A LA CARA,
NADIE CONOCE A NADIE POR COMO SE MIRA POR FUERA.
PERDONEN QUE MI FURIA HOY SEA SILENTE.
PERDÓNENME POR HOY SENTIRME IMPOTENTE,
LES JURO QUE LES AMO Y SIEMPRE ESTARÉ CON MI GENTE
PERO QUE USTEDES SIEMPRE LUCHEN ESO ES LO IMPORTANTE.
¡¡NUNCA ESPEREN POR ARTISTAS, NI POR HÉROES FICTICIOS, USTEDES SON QUIENES TIENEN EL PODER!! ENSÉÑALE A TU HIJO, A TU HIJA, A RESPETAR Y AMAR SIN IMPORTAR EL COLOR DE PIEL, EDUCA A QUIENES PARECEN NO SABER SOBRE LA HISTORIA DE SUFRIMIENTO Y LUCHA QUE HA TENIDO LA GENTE NEGRA, SOBRE LAS INJUSTICIAS CON LAS QUE CARGAMOS POR SIGLOS. TAL VEZ HOY NO CAMBIEMOS EL MUNDO, PERO MAÑANA HAREMOS LA DIFERENCIA.