While attending the White House Correspondents’ Dinner on April 25, Killer Mike was stunned by what he saw on social media, as images and videos of unrest in Baltimore surfaced in the wake of 25-year-old Freddie Gray's police-custody death.
“As I followed social media, I saw that Baltimore was burning,” he wrote in an op-ed for Billboard. "As I sat there and watched my timeline, I felt helpless, hopeless: 'Here I am at this lavish event -- the most powerful man in the world is black, and people like him are being killed by the citizens who are paid to protect them.' I left the dinner numb."
Like the rest of the world, Mike watched unrest in Baltimore escalate in the following days as riots broke out in the city, but the MC didn’t condemn what he saw. "I don’t criticize rioting because I understand it,” he explained in the op-ed. "But after the fires die down: organize, strategize and mobilize. Like Ferguson, you have an opportunity to start anew."
"I don’t have a solution because whoever’s there will have to come up with it,” he continued. "But we need community relations: riots are the language of the unheard.”
Mike concluded his op-ed with a thought about this nation, wondering "if this country will ever truly be what is promised in our Constitution for people who look like me."
Killer Mike's op-ed is just one of the latest responses to the custody-death of Freddie Gray, which has been ruled a homicide.
Game wrote his own op-ed comparing unrest in Baltimore to 1992's L.A. riots; Wale spoke to high school students in the city; King Los and other members of the B-More hip-hop community addressed historic police issues in the city; and Joey Bada$$ was among New Yorkers marching in solidarity with Baltimore protesters.
More recently, President Barack Obama, Freddie Gray's mother, and many more reacted to the fact that six Baltimore police officers are being charged in the Gray case, news that was announced today (May 1) by State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, who said in a press conference that "no one is above the law."