Last summer, Vic Mensa made a trip to Palestine, and apparently, it was quite an experience.
He, along with a group of Black artists, activists and scholars made the voyage organized by Dream Defenders. And while video from the trip made his “We Could Be Free” visual, the point of it was so much more.
The Roc Nation emcee recently wrote an essay for TIME about his experiences in the Middle East. He claims that darker-skinned people over there experience some of the same discrimination they do in the United States.
“I do not pretend to be familiar with every nuance of the longstanding turmoil that engulfs Israel and Palestine; it is no doubt as aged and tangled as the family trees ripped apart by its brutality,” he wrote. “I can only speak to the experiences I had there, to the humiliating checkpoints where Palestinians were not only stripped of their possessions but of their dignity.
“Walking the ancient streets of the Old City, I watched a Palestinian boy thrown against the wall and frisked by Israeli soldiers in full military gear, carrying assault rifles with their fingers ever present on the trigger,” he continued. “Our guide tells us he’s likely been accused of throwing stones, a crime punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of four years in prison. Take a moment to process that. Throwing stones. Punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence.”
Vic Mensa’s not been scared to reveal what’s on his mind. Previously, he’s criticized Future for rapping about Xanax and even said that R. Kelly should be “locked away forever” for his alleged instances of sexual assault.
Read Vic’s full TIME piece here.