Keke Palmer has been a proud supporter of the protests that have gripped the world in response to police brutality. Last week, the actress/talk show host went viral in a clip showing her asking National Guard members to march with her and other protesters. Instead of marching, some of them chose to take a knee in solidarity with the movement. However, Keke felt that the kneeling was superficial at this point.
“While a few guardsmen knelt, for me that isn’t enough. Kneeling has become a mockery of sorts. Kneeling on George Floyd’s neck is what killed him. Now we see police officers kneeling and then, moments later, attacking peaceful protesters. At this point, the kneeling has no meaning.”
Earlier in her guest column with Variety, Keke spoke to that experience facing the National Guard, saying that she was not concerned with the guardsmen protecting businesses but more concerned with the lives that needed protecting.
“At one point, I spoke with National Guardsmen who were preventing us from marching past a certain point and challenged them to march with us. They didn’t march with us, and while one offered to for a short stretch, he also said he had to “protect the businesses” and buildings in the area. In that moment, I wasn’t thinking about who may or may not touch a building;
I was thinking about how we’re out here, fighting for a call to protect human lives. And the government is telling you to protect a building? That doesn’t add up to me, and I wanted to challenge them with the question, “How does that add up to you?”
You can read the rest of Keke’s powerful column here.