There were a lot of things that annoyed me about the VMAs this year; Miley Cyrus wearing dreads, Iggy Azalea performing, the list goes on. But the most upsetting and problematic thing was Rebel Wilson making a joke about police brutality.

For those that were fortunate enough to not watch the ceremony this year, Wilson came on stage wearing a police uniform. It was there and then that I knew I wouldn’t like what was coming next. Instead of making a positive statement regarding police brutality, Wilson instead decided to make a joke on how she doesn’t like police strippers. Then she proceed to take off her jacket and had a “F*** Tha Stripper Police” t-shirt. Of course, the joke didn’t stop there and she even mentioned that “I hate this injustice, hence the shirt.”

There are many things that made me uncomfortable with this joke. The fact that Wilson had the audacity to make the joke in the first place when almost every day another person of color is left dead on the streets. The fact that MTV thought it would be okay to have this joke aired live on their awards show. And the fact that people in the audience were laughing made everything even more unsettling.

The blatant disregard for Black bodies in this country is disgusting. 

I have several questions for Rebel Wilson, MTV and the people laughing. Would you do the same if the parents of Mike Brown were in the room?  Tamir Rice?  Rekia Boyd? Aiyana Jones? Trayvon Martin? And the list is much longer and keeps growing. Would you do the same on the streets of Ferguson? In the midst of a Black Lives Matter protest? Honestly, would you?

The VMAs disgusted me in ways I couldn’t even imagine. An awards show I used to love because of all the performances and corny but funny jokes it provided wound up leaving me angry. As I sit here angrily typing, trying to funnel all this anger into a semi-eloquent article, I fight back the tears as I think of those who have been killed. I fight back the tears as I realize all those that can still be killed. I fight back the tears knowing that one day something could happen and I wouldn’t see my friends or family again. I fight back the tears knowing that one day I might not come back.

Police brutality is no laughing matter. As you laugh and joke, another person of color has been shot to the ground. would you laugh about that?


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