- 02 Jun 20
Launched by music executives Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang in the US, the #theshowmustbepaused initiative will see an impressive network of music industry artists and businesses lockdown for a day without music on Tuesday, in protest at the murder of George Floyd.
The murder of George Floyd has inspired the deepest kind of revulsion around the world. The image of the brutal killing of an innocent citizen by a member of the police in Minneapolis will forever be etched into the consciousness of anyone with an ounce of soul.
All over the United States of America, there has been a wave of righteous protest in response to this latest, racist outrage. And around the world people have gathered in the streets in impressive numbers to express their support. This powerful display of collective strength reflects a rising groundswell against the institutional racism, that in so many ways is built into how the system, in all its manifestations, works in the USA.
The hope is that this moment may become pivotal. The first imperative is that the scales of justice must be rebalanced in America, to end the widespread, and ongoing discrimination against African-Americans which sees a hugely disproportionate number of black people in jail at any given time – and thus disenfranchised when it comes to expressing their democratic views at the ballot box.
There is no hope whatsoever of change being accepted or embraced by the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump – himself an agent of the toxic ideology of white supremacism. His response to the grotesque murder of George Floyd and the subsequent protests has been shockingly provocative, and dangerous in the extreme. His threat that when the looting starts the shooting starts was effectively giving the green light to right-wing groups to take to the streets with guns. It is a potential nightmare scenario.
That is the imminent danger to life and liberty that his crushingly warped and hate-filled Presidency has come to represent. However, this may be the moment when the tide of history completely sweeps away any of the remaining pretences that underpin the Presidency of Donald Trump. Which is why it is so important for as many people across the world as possible to express their support for change.
It is against this torrid backdrop – and the extraordinary need for positive action to impress on those who are going to vote in the US election in November that Trump must be defeated and that the deepest kind of change must be seen to happen, starting now – that Hot Press will join our friends and colleagues in the music industry to observe the blackout on all music-related news, launches, reports, interviews and reviews that has gathered momentum and gained support across almost every sector, for Tuesday, June 2nd. We have also postponed Tuesday night’s planned Lockdown Session with Harry Fennell.
The killing of George Floyd was another horrific, unconscionable act in a long history of tyranny against black people in the US. In solidarity, we too say: #TheShowMustBePaused