Dwayne Johnson posted a somewhat rambling video message to his Instagram earlier today prompted by the murder of George Floyd and the brutal police crackdown on the non-violent protests organized after his death.
“Where are you? Where is our leader?” Johnson begins, questions he goes on to ask, plaintively, several times during the eight-and-a-half-minute video. He never mentions the president’s name, but Johnson is clearly upset by the lack of leadership, a more political emotion than he normally shares with the world.
“Where is our compassionate leader whose gonna step up to our country, whose down, on its knees, and extend a hand and say you stand up, stand up with me, stand up with me because I got you?”
It’s a question without an answer at the moment, but in the meantime, Johnson echoes Stephen Colbert’s call for individuals to take action in service of the collective good. He starts with himself.
“You have my word that I’m gonna do everything in my power until my dying day, until my last breath, to do everything I can to create the change that is needed, to normalize equality because Black Lives Matter.” He unapologetically utters the slogan, which is probably going to piss off a lot of his fans, a risk that he’s clearly willing to take.
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Our country is crippled and on its knees, begging to be heard and pleading for change. Where is our compassionate leader? The leader who unifies and inspires our country at our most painful time when we need it the most. The leader who steps up and takes full accountability for our country and embraces every color in it. The leader who picks our country up off its knees and says you have my word – we got this – and together, change will happen. Where are you? Because we’re all here. Maybe one day that galvanizing leader will emerge. Either way, the process to change has already begun. #normalizeequality #blacklivesmatter
Johnson decries the military force deployed against protestors “begging and pleading” peacefully. He has a better solution.
“You would be surprised at how people in pain respond when you say them I care about you, when you say to them I’m listening to you. You’d be surprised how people would respond, how Americans would respond when you say to them I care about you I am listening to you.”
The Rock thanks the protestors, specifically those around the world, for their “incredible, inspiring, beautiful displays of solidarity.”
“As we continue to wait for that leader to emerge I would recommend to all of you that we must become the leaders we’re looking for. We become our own leaders. Because we’re doing it now, we must become the leaders we are looking for.”