In 2020, #ENDSARS started as a protest movement against police brutality, injustice and much more in Nigeria. It is likely you have seen moments of the movement making headlines in the news or on Instagram, trending on Twitter, and maybe even on Facebook. As I am not a native of Nigeria, this is a movement I do not have personal experience with. However, coming from the United States, something that links the two cultures together is the Black Lives Matter protest calling out the injustice and murders of our people by police forces.
Music has a strong way of unifying, uplifting, encouraging and empowering the masses off of one central beat, lyric, video or idea. Analyzing the song and video entitled “Shoot the Messenger” by Nigerian rapper A-Q. We are able to see and be interlocked into the experience of being a centralized piece in this groundbreaking time. In the video, we are met with the perspective of one person watching the events taking place as the police brutality and the protest unfold. Throughout the video we hear gunshots adding to the severity of the movement. Speaking to the fact that one’s life should not be taken so cruelly or in vain. But also reiterates the fact that being a part of the protest itself is a life or death situation. One of the most memorable moments of listening to the song was in the lyrics:
And this is how I lost my life
Don’t you ever forget
Keep up the fight
See you in the afterlife
This video and song is pivotal in provoking the audience to stand up for the injustice they see and be bold about the things that are not right in their societies. A-Q really encourages any action as small as a retweet on twitter or as big as risking your life on the front line of the protest. He even touched on the ideals of feminism and suggesting the government be more open to listening to feminist. This type of hip hop is essential in challenging and bettering our societies.