Georgia Community Creates Music Video In Honor Of Ahmaud Arbery
Travis Slim, a rapper and social justice advocate from Brunswick, Georgia, is merging physical protest with music to bring awareness to Ahmaud Arbery’s killing.
On Sunday (May 24), Slim gathered demonstrators at the Glynn County Courthouse to call for justice for Arbery. The protest was part of a music video for a song Slim performed calling for Glynn County District Attorney Jackie Johnson to resign.
"I just look at Ahmaud and it could've been anyone in my family just like it was him,” Slim said, according to First Coast News. “If they did it to him, they would've done it to one of mine. I want to make sure we don't keep having Ahmauds or Ahmaud situations."
He continued: “We’re trying to make sure the message gets out to all the crowds and the younger generation, and we know they like music, and so I wrote a song and we put a song together.”
Johnson recused herself from the case due to a conflict of interest. Gregory McMichael, a suspect in Arbery’s killing, worked more than 20 years as an investigator with the Brunswick Judicial Circuit District. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is taking a closer look at Johnson’s office along with the DA of Ware County as part of its investigation into the case.
Her missteps also include assigning George E. Barnhill, who was later dismissed, as the second prosecutor in the case. In a letter, according to the New York Times, Barnhill claimed the McMichaels were in their rights to pursue “a burglary suspect,” and justified in using “deadly force to protect himself” under Georgia law.
Wanda Jones-Cooper, Arbery’s mother, said she began researching Barnhill’s connection to the gunmen, “I learned that there was some relationships between the DA in Glynn County and Ware County. I did that just by going on the internet and looking on Facebook and finding that these people were actually friends. ... And then I found out his son was actually working at the DA there."
Joyette M. Holmes, who was appointed by Governor Brian Kemp is now the DA presiding over the case.
“What I’m trying to do is let people know no matter how big or small your city is, if you unite and be strong for the same purpose of a change, there’s power in numbers,” Slim said.
Glynn County’s sheriff and Brunswick Mayor Cornell L. Harvey were also at the protest.
“Shout as loud as you want to. Be as aggressive as you want to, but do it in a very peaceful manner,” Harvey said. “Let’s make sure that we keep the pressure on getting justice for Ahmaud. That’s what we want here. Justice for Ahmaud.”
The crowd then moved to the mural of Arbery painted in downtown Brunswick where more of the music video was filmed. Arbery's father thanked the crowd and Slim for everything they've been doing to fight for justice for his son.
Ahmaud Arbery was shot-and-killed on February 23 while jogging in Brunswick. Three arrests have since been made, including Gregory McMichael and his son Travis McMichael, who pulled the trigger. William Bryan Jr., the man who allegedly followed Arbery in his vehicle and filmed the killing, was charged with felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.
Watch First Coast News’ package on the protest and music video shoot below.