Selena Gomez and Shawn Mendes give their Instagram accounts to black activists to educate fans

8 June 2020, 18:06 | Updated: 8 June 2020, 18:11

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By Sophie Thompson

Selena Gomez and Shawn Mendes have handed over their Instagram accounts to black activists for a number of days to "accept responsibility" and educate their fans on racism first-hand.

Amid George Floyd protests worldwide and the Black Lives Matter movement being amplified louder than ever before, some of our favourite celebrities are doing their part by making respectable donations and educating their fans - and Selena Gomez and Shawn Mendes have officially handed over their Instagram accounts to black activists to do the talking.

Activists including Zyahna Bryant, the youngest member of the Virginia African American Advisory Board and Alicia Garza, one of the co-founders of Black Lives Matter have been handed over control of the pairs social accounts (ok, so they're probably just picking the content, not snooping on their DMs), to talk about the current situation and what people can do to help.

READ MORE: TikTok users change their profile pictures to a black fist to show support for black creators

Selena Gomez and Shawn Mendes have handed over control of their accounts to black activists.
Selena Gomez and Shawn Mendes have handed over control of their accounts to black activists. Picture: Tibrina Hobson/David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty

Shawn, who is currently isolating with girlfriend Camila Cabello, announced the initiative last week in which he said he would be championing “incredible young Black changemakers” by allowing them to post educational content to his account, and Zyahna has already used the platform to make some seriously powerful statements.

She began protesting just age 12 when she organised a rally for the murdered Trayvon Martin, and suggested, if people are able, to donate to NAACP Legal Defense Fund and BYP100.

Speaking about her experiences on Shawn's Instagram Story, she said, “Now is the time to move to action, now is the time to educate ourselves and do the reading, find the local people in your community who are doing anti-racist work...I think we all have a responsibility to do our part to actually promote change.”

Yes ma'am.

Luis Jonathan Hernandez, founder of Youth Over Guns, has now been passed the baton and is using his time to document the protests from the frontline to the 56 million followers with eyes on the account.

Being the 6th most followed Instagram account in the world, Selena too has a lot of room for educating her younger fans.

Right now, founder of the #SayHerName movement, Kimberlé Crenshaw, is following on from Alicia Garza to provide resources that make the current situation a little easier to understand, and to publicise the work of intersectional think tank African American Policy Forum.

The #SayHerName campaign was born to bring justice to the black women who were forgotten victims of police brutality, and hand-in-hand with Black Lives Matter, the six posts made by the activists so far have totalled over 10 million likes.

“Black people are being murdered by police, and police are not being held accountable,” Alicia stated in an IGTV video, adding: “We’ve seen it time and time again, for decades…and people are in the streets because they are fed up. They are sick and tired of being sick and tired. I am also sick and tired of being sick and tired.”

Selena herself has already commented on the movement, admitting that she has been "struggling to know the right things to say to get the word out", and this refreshing posts from powerful voices that often go unheard are a warm welcome from everyone.

Fellow celebrities, it's time to watch and learn. Oh, and post a little more than a black square.

READ MORE: Halsey slams police for firing rubber bullets at her and other Black Lives Matter protesters