“I’m mad as hell”: Run The Jewels’ Killer Mike delivers emotional speech after George Floyd death
31.05.2020

“I’m mad as hell”: Run The Jewels’ Killer Mike delivers emotional speech after George Floyd death

Words by Tom Parker

We’ve all seen the tragedy that’s occurred in Atlanta.

As riots ruled the Atlanta streets on Friday May 29, rapper and activist Killer Mike delivered an emotional speech at the Atlanta Mayor’s press conference. Visibly crushed by the death of George Floyd that occurred on Monday May 25, Mike implored Atlanta people to stay calm and be considered with their response.

“I am duty-bound to be here to simply say, that it is your duty not to burn your own house down for anger with an enemy,” Mike said. “It is your duty to fortify your own house so that you may be a house of refuge in times of organisation and now is the time to plot, plan, strategise, organise and mobilise.

“It is time to beat up prosecutors you don’t like at the voting booth. It is time to hold mayoral officers accountable, chiefs and deputy chiefs. Atlanta is not perfect but we are a lot better than we ever were and we’re a lot better than cities are.”

Floyd died after police officer Derek Chauvin, who is white, pinned him to the ground and held his knee to his neck for nearly nine minutes. Chauvin and a troupe of fellow cops were investigating a $20 counterfeit bill used at a local food store when they encountered Floyd.

Mike wore his heart on his sleeve throughout the speech in what was a resounding call for help.

“I’m mad as hell. I woke up wanting to see the world burn down yesterday because I’m tired of seeing black men die. He casually put his knee on a human being’s neck as he died like a zebra in the clutch of a lion’s jaw and we watch it like murder porn over and over again.”

Mike continued his speech by saying that action needs to be immediate: “We don’t want to see one officer charged, we want to see four officers prosecuted and sentenced.”

Elsewhere, he gave direction to US broadcaster CNN to provide hope rather than suffuse fear with their messaging and alluded to the strength of Atlanta as a tool for the city to process and respond, and not follow the failed footsteps of other US cities.

See the full speech below:

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories five times a week.