Azealia Banks condemns looting and calls it counterproductive to Blacks, Internet says 'you're out of touch'
In a lengthy post on social media, the rapper said stealing expensive items merely sent a message that 'we aren't really angry or in need, we just want to be destructive'
The rapper Azealia Banks is famously outspoken and has been known to candidly dish out her two cents on things that don't sit right with her. On August 27, the '212' singer spoke out on social media about the recent spate of violence and lootings that have sprung in the wake of the Black Live Matter protests and riots, with the latest example coming in the wake of the tragic Jacob Blake shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
On Wednesday night, August 26, Vice President Mike Pence condemned the chaos that had erupted across the country during his address at the Republican National Convention. "The violence must stop, whether in Minneapolis, Portland, or Kenosha," Pence stated. The VP noted that he and President Trump "always support the right of Americans to peaceful protest, but rioting and looting is not peaceful protest." He also added that anyone engaged in criminal activity would be "prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
The next day, Azealia Banks took to her Instagram account to voice her opinions on people breaking into stores and stealing expensive goods, saying "looting is f**king pointless." In a lengthy rant, which can be read here, the singer stated, "I understand looting necessities like foodstuff, gasoline, toiletries, it would even make more sense to loot FBI case file rooms, a CIA Headquarters or a gun store. But looting for Nikes and blouses and consumer electronics and designer watches is a clear indication of 'We don't know what to do with ourselves/we aren't really angry or in need/we just want to be destructive.'"
The singer continued, "It sends no clear message to Black people and an even clearer message of cowardice to governments, authorities and white hegemony. It says to them 'yeah they'll storm the clothing store but won't dare storm the precinct.' Extremely counterproductive."
The rapper then further outlined her stance in the comments section, saying "Very soon all consumer goods will have paper-thin tracking devices installed and the re-sale of stolen goods will not be an option, so an excuse of financial desperation or simply being fed-up will no longer be viable. If this is how any members of the black populace, or black lives matter movement finds it correct to properly 'dismantle capitalism,' y’all really should just stay home."
She also said this was in effect making things worse: "These companies have insurance policies that will absolutely afford them the opportunity to re-acquire what’s been lost, meaning: all of those made in Pakistan/made in Sri Lanka/made in Haiti dresses you stole means poor Black and Brown people in other countries go back to cramped sewing factories during a global pandemic to make new ones. All them diamond necklaces and Rolexes you stole means little kids in Africa are sent back into mines and caves to dig for more diamonds/gold/emeralds etc. This is an absolutely pointless strategy."
She later added that she was aware of the bigger picture and issues surrounding the BLM protests: "Edit: to avoid confusion, the black lives matter movement, has an immense amount of white faces this go-round. I made sure to state 'Black populace or black lives matter movement,' to indicate that I am COMPLETELY aware of how African American grievance has been 100% hi-jacked and commodified by white folk via big tech. I know they are looting too! I know they are there to instigate, perplex, and most importantly-SURVEIL. I needed to make it clear that I now see BLM as a commodified/palatable way for white hegemony and the status quo to engage black grievances & virtue signal all the while maintaining their collective financial dominance and generationally accrued assets."
Her followers were quick to respond, with one scornful user saying "Looting serves its purpose. People obviously sell the luxury items to get more values and money for necessities, but it’s clear you are out of touch. #celebritiesarenotourleaders."
A fan also bluntly replied, "Hey Azealia please don’t tell people how to express their rage." One person also sarcastically said, "Loot the precincts y’all, I think that will be a clearer message." Another user said, "This is such a bad take."
A fan then commented, "So how do we move forward for change? It seems like celebrities use they platform just to comment on the looting, instead tell us your plan to help... Y’all care so much about the looting when its everybody, it’s not mainly black people looting, so stop promoting that on us."
A follower also said, "Never forget COINTELPRO, these people are playing right into the government/media's hand. Now any action taken against them will be justified in their view."
As one fan remarked, "I didn’t think there was a looting trend, just a looting footage/reporting trend. Just people on both ends trying to discredit BLM protests."
Another user concluded, "The people who loot are putting way too much emphasis on White people past, present and future and not thinking about their own: the welfare and dignity of Black and Brown and how looting makes things a hell of a lot worse for us in the end."