• Carla Vreeland

Banksy shares piece encapsulating the injustices that swarm America

In a world in which the phrase “the new normal” decides every step that is taken, lawmakers and citizens are fighting for what they believe that new normal should be.

Protests and petitions have recently erupted worldwide following the death of George Floyd at the hands of several Minneapolis police officers. Many influencers and artists are using their platforms to spread awareness of the injustices that the black community have been facing since the beginning of the United States and to change both the system and people's mindsets.

Similarly, the anonymous English street artists and activist, Bansky, created and shared a piece of art to his 9.5 million followers on Instagram with the same intent.

“At first I thought I should just shut up and listen to black people about this issue,” Banksy said. “But why would I do that? It’s not their problem. It’s mine. People of colour are being failed by the system. The white system.”

His haunting piece demonstrates the blatant disregard for human life and basic human rights that continues to be perpetuated by many nations.

In the artwork, the American flag is lit by fire by a single candle standing at the memorial of a victim of police brutality. This symbolism encapsulates the systemic racism that has poisoned society and America to its core. Like the flame, the push for racial equity will finally destroy the racist systems that the United States was founded on and spark much needed change.

According to the Los Angeles Times, 1 in 1000 black men and boys in the United States are expected to die at the hands of the police, which is 2.5 times more likely than white men and boys.

The current divisions in the United States affects the lives of millions every day. The laws that have been passed to restrict and reform the police system, as a result of the recent protests, pave the way for the future changes that need to be made.

Through their work, artists not only recognize social problems and show their solidarity, but they also spark raw and honest conversations that may lead to these vital changes.

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