Roland Martin sat down with legendary actor and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte on Wednesday for an exclusive interview. During their discussion, Martin and Belafonte covered a variety of topics, including Colin Kaepernick’s decision to sit during the National Anthem at football games.
Belafonte, who is no stranger to taking a stand on an unpopular issue, shared with Martin his profound thoughts on Kaepernick’s symbolic gesture to stand with the oppressed and address the backlash the NFL quarterback is experiencing.
Martin asked Belafonte about his thoughts on the reports detailing anger coming from NFL front office officials about Kaepernick’s protests, in which an undisclosed number of individuals said they would not sign the embattled quarterback if he was released from the San Francisco 49ers.
Mr. Belafonte told Martin, “To mute the slave is always been to the best interests of the slave owner.
“When a Black voice is raised in protest to oppression, those who are comfortable with our oppression are the first to criticize us for daring to speak out against it.”
Belafonte, who played a prominent role in the Civil Rights Movement, called Kaepernick’s decision to stand against the oppression of African-Americans a “noble thing.”
He continued, “I think that speaking out and making people aware of the fact that you are paying homage to an anthem that also has a constituency that by the millions suffer is a righteous thing to do.”
The civil rights icon added, “The fact that these people are having these ‘How dare you speak out against lynching?’ and all of the things that racism stands for or the conclusions to racist acts permit – I think is a statement about America.”
For having brought this attention to the plight of African-Americans who suffer at the hands of heavy-handed policing, which in many instances end in the deaths of Black men and women, Mr. Belafonte called Kaepernick “a noble and courageous man.”
Watch Roland Martin’s exclusive interview with legendary actor and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte in the video clip above.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
Watch NewsOne Now with Roland Martin, in its new time slot on TV One.
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BIVISIBILITY: These Stars Are Bisexual & Proud
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1. In 2015, Miley Cyrus revealed that she identifies as sexually fluid, telling Paper magazine, “I am literally open to every single thing that is consenting and doesn’t involve an animal and everyone is of age.”
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2. Ricky Martin shocked the world when he came out as gay in 2010. The father of two once revealed, “I know that I like both men and women, I’m against sexual labels.”
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3. After photos surfaced of her making out with Michelle Rodriguez, Cara Delevingne came clean about her bisexuality, saying, “It took me a long time to accept the idea, until I first fell in love with a girl at 20 and recognized that I had to accept it.”
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4. Frank Ocean captivated the world with his songs about love and women. When he opened up about his experience falling in love with a guy, he garnered the attention of many more.
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5. Lady Gaga has been open about her sexuality since the beginning of her career. After naysayers claimed it was all for marketing, she said, “This is who I am and who I have always been.”
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6. After coming under fire for using the F bomb multiple times on social media, Azealia Banks defended herself, saying “I can’t be homophobic. I’m bisexual.”
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7. Amber Rose has never been shy about her sexuality. She even openly admitted to being in a relationship with a girl, way before her Kanye days.
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8. David Bowie was one of the most notable artists of all time, whose sexuality and gender bent all of the traditional rules.
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9. Mel B once revealed that she was in a four-year relationship with a woman before.
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10. In 2013, Zoe Saldana said that she “might end up with a woman raising my children. I’ve been attracted to the male species, but if one day I wake up and want to be with a woman, I will do that because it is my life, therefore it is my decision.”
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11. Megan Fox told Esquire Magazine once, “I have no question in my mind about being bisexual.”
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12. Angelina Jolie has always been open about her bisexuality. She once told OK Magazine, “I have loved women in the past and slept with them.”
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