"My people don’t want no trouble / We’ve had enough struggle / I just want to live," Keedron Bryant sings in the viral clip

By Gabrielle Chung
May 28, 2020 11:51 PM
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Keedron Bryant, George Floyd
Keedron Bryant/instagram, Facebook

A 12-year-old's song about the realities of being black has become a rallying cry in the wake of protests across the United States over racial injustice and police brutality.

Keedron Bryant, a rising gospel singer who competed on NBC's fourth season of Little Big Shots, went viral this week when he shared a video of himself singing about his experience as a "young black man."

"Just singing what’s on my heart...hope this blesses someone," he captioned a clip of the song, which features the lyrics: "I’m a young black man / doing all that I can / to stand / Oh, but when I look around / and I see what’s being done to my kind / every day, I’m being hunted as prey / My people don’t want no trouble / We’ve had enough struggle / I just want to live / God, protect me / I just want to live / I just want to live."

As of Thursday, the heartbreaking video has received 1.3 million views on his Instagram. It has also been reposted by many celebrities on social media, including Janet Jackson and Kandi Burruss.

"I’m struggling today. How do I explain this never ending cycle to my 3 sons. God help us," actor David Oyelowo wrote on his Instagram, alongside the hashtags "#georgefloyd #ahmaudarbery #ericgarner #mikebrown #trayvonmartin #emmetttill."

"He should not have to sing this song," Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o wrote on her account, sharing Oyelowo's post.

Meanwhile, NBA legend LeBron James shared a message of support to Bryant, writing: "I LOVE YOU KID! I LOVE US!"

"It’s really getting outta hand... just sad world man," Odell Beckham Jr. replied in the comments. "LOVE ALWAYS WINS I don’t understand this world."

Actress Eva Longoria also expressed her support and reposted the clip, writing on her Instagram Stories, "Speaking the truth and singing in pain."

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Bryant's viral video comes amid protests across the United States over the death of George Floyd, who died in police custody on Monday after an officer pinned him to the ground with a knee on his neck.

In a video of the incident, an officer — later identified as Derek Chauvin — can be seen with his knee firmly placed on the back of Floyd's neck. Floyd was handcuffed and lying on his stomach next to a Minneapolis patrol car.

Three officers held Floyd down, with Chauvin placing his weight on the man's neck with his left knee, as seen in the video.

Floyd can be heard in the video groaning in pain while bystanders plead with Chauvin to be more gentle. Throughout the nine-minute clip, he repeatedly asks for help. He tells the officers that he cannot breathe and says that "everything hurts." The video continued until Floyd was visibly still.

Before the video gained national attention, police had characterized Floyd's death as being the result of a "medical incident."

In a Wednesday press conference, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey called for charges against the white officer who put his knee on the neck of Floyd. He also asserted that Floyd's race played a part in his death.

"He'd be alive today if he were white," Frey said of Floyd, according to CBS News. "I'm not a prosecutor, but let me be clear, the arresting officer killed someone."

George Floyd
Facebook

GoFundMe campaign to help the Floyd's family has since surpassed $1 million in under a day.

"My family and I watched in absolute horror as the now infamous and horrifying video began to spread quickly throughout social media," Floyd’s sibling, Philonise Floyd wrote in a description on the page.

"What we saw on that tape left us shell shocked; a white Minneapolis police officer kneeling directly on my brother's neck, obstructing his ability to breathe," she continued. "As some officers knelt on his neck, other officers participated and watched; no one took any action to save my brother's life. Those officers would continue to brutalize my brother until he died."

According to the campaign, funds raised will assist in covering Floyd's funeral costs, as well as help the family "as we continue to seek justice for George."