On Saturday (Feb. 22), Rihanna accepted her NAACP President’s Award during the 51st NAACP Image Awards for special achievement and distinguished public service, and during the singer’s speech, she encouraged everyone to unite to fight injustice.
Rihanna first thanked the NAACP for its efforts in “supporting people of color.” “I’m lucky I was able to start the Clara Lionel Foundation in 2012, and if there’s anything that I’ve learned it’s that we can only fix this world together,” Rihanna said.
“We can’t do it divided. I can’t emphasize that enough. We can’t let the desensitivity seep in. The if it’s your problem then it’s not mine. It’s a woman’s problem. It’s a black people problem. It’s a poor people problem.”
“I mean, how many of us in this room have colleagues and partners and friends from other races, sexes, religions? Show of hands?” Rihanna asked the audience.
“Well, you know they want to break bread with you right? They like you? Well, then this is their problem too. So when we’re marching and protesting and posting about the Michael Brown Jr.s and the Atatiana Jefferson’s of the world. Tell your friends to pull up.”
The 51st NAACP Image Awards were broadcasted live from Pasadena, California. The annual award ceremony celebrates the accomplishments of people of color in the fields of entertainment and literature. The prestigious ceremony also honors individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors.