Niall Horan from One Direction joined a long line of celebrities and performers who united against all forms of racism following an anti-Semitic rant from a British rapper. NBC News says Horan joined people like The 1975 as well as Lily Allen to slam the rapper’s remarks.
The outlet picked up on other names from the scene as well, including Lewis Capaldi, Little Mix, and Rita Ora, in addition to several record labels who united to slam racism. They wrote an open letter on Saturday called, “#NoSilenceInMusic.”
The letter goes on to explain where racism comes from, including a place of ignorance, a lack of education, as well as the need to blame others for the world’s problems. The letter also commented on police brutality in the United States as well as anti-Semitism online.
Music fans may know that the letter comes after Wiley, a British grime rapper, was dropped from Twitter and all other social media platforms for posting a number of anti-Semitic comments on his accounts. The rapper compared the Jews to the Ku Klux Klan and says they exploit black artists in the industry.
As most know, the topic of racism has become a lightning rod for debate and activism ever since George Floyd was choked to death by a Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin.
The antisemitic posts from Wiley are abhorrent.
They should not have been able to remain on Twitter and Instagram for so long and I have asked them for a full explanation.
Social media companies must act much faster to remove such appalling hatred from their platforms.
— Priti Patel (@pritipatel) July 26, 2020
Social media posts and other celebrities and mainstream artists have questioned the role of tech companies in the censoring of hate speech online, urging them to do more to combat hate on the internet. Wiley, who is 41-years-old, was banned this past week after he uploaded his comments on Twitter.
It occurred last Wednesday, following his banning one day prior from Facebook and Instagram. Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, said that social media companies and tech organizations needed to do more to eliminate hate speech from their platforms.
Critics, on the other hand, have argued that it was dangerous to allow tech companies to determine what is and what isn’t hate speech on their platforms, due to a fear of tech-tyranny and oppression.