Growing up in Chicago, 23-year-old rapper Vic Mensa has experienced firsthand examples of ongoing tension between law enforcement and people of color.
In advance of tonight’s first presidential debate this evening (September 26), the Chi-town native shares his personal account of losing one of his best friends to police brutality and why he feels being involved in the voting process, particularly on a local level, is extremely important now more than ever.
During the spotlight with Vevo, Mensa recounts what happened after the death of his friend, who was shot by police 16 times, losing his life at the age of 17. The incident was caught on video, and following the release of the video, the rapper shared how he personally joined the protest effort.
“I do want to have politicians in place that we can have a dialogue with that has to do with improving our quality of life,” the rapper explains, going on to add that he is grateful his parents were deeply rooted in the city and helped to educate him early on about the importance of being involved with one’s community and the voting process. “I was always hearing discussions and debates about people running for office so hearing my parents focus on that, when I turned 18, I’m like, ‘Now I’m old enough to do this, this is dope.’”
As a result of his personal experiences and adding to the important dialogues happening in our communities across the nation, Mensa is encouraging others to not let their vote go to waste.
“I definitely encourage people to go vote just so that you can be a part of the society you live in, so you can have some type of voice,” he adds. “Affecting change in the hood is why I vote.”
Watch the video where Vic Mensa explains why he chooses to vote in the clip below.
(Photo: Vic Mensa via Vevo)