For the 2016 BET Hip Hop Awards we more than just music on our minds.
#BlackLivesMatter was a huge theme this year as numerous artists graced the stage and gave us a piece of what social justice meant to them.
Big K.R.I.T. kicked things off and was dressed up as a police officer for a spoken word performance of his verse on Kenneth Whalum’s song “Might Not Be Ok.” This was followed by everyone standing in solidarity and raising their fists up for black power.
Sway Calloway then came on-stage and delivered a powerful message about Black life and how hip hop is currently carrying the torch.
LeCrae followed later by coming on stage and killing a spoken word performance touching on numerous police shootings that’ve happened over the past few months. He also reminded the crowd of real American history, including the genocide of the Native Americans and the enslavement of African Americans.
“It’s something I never do / After Philando, man, I’m wondering where was you?” he said to the crowd. “They ask for your opinion / All you thinking is revenue / Never do / I pray to God he make you a better you.”
Perhaps the winner of the BLM portion of the night was T.I. who performed “We Will Not”. Half way through, he was joined on-stage by a bunch of people holding signs reading “us or else” and “fight the power”.