Legendary performer Stevie Wonder released two new songs for the first time in four years — and one of them pointedly dismantles the notion of "all lives matter."
What are the details?
The song "Can't Put It in the Hands of Fate" is a socially conscious track addressing police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement.
"Can't Put It in the Hands of Fate" also name-checks former NFL star-turned-political activist Colin Kaepernick.
The song features rappers Rapsody, Cordae, Chika, and Busta Rhymes.
Wonder — real name Stevland Hardaway Morris — sings, "You say you're sick and tired of us protesting, I say 'Not tired enough to make a change' ... you say you believe that 'all lives matter,' I say 'I don't believe the f*** you do.'"
Wonder, according to reports, said the new song was a direct response to "systemic racism."
"[E]very young person is saying this stuff here is unacceptable," he said. "We can't be a united people of the world and have this craziness. ... Change is right now — we can't put it in the hands of fate."
He also said that people of the U.S. — and around the world — need to atone "not just for a couple of years, but at least three to five years."
"[W]e cannot ignore and act like the things in this nation didn't happen," the performer explained. "We can't erase them out of history books. 1619, it happened. The slave trade did happen. Reconstruction did happen, 150 million black people did die, that did happen. The only way I think we can fix it is through our love and respect."
During a recent virtual press conference, Wonder added, "I was thinking about where we are in the world. And I was thinking about how this is most crucial time. Not just black people or people of color but young people everywhere are going, 'This is not acceptable.' Change is right now. We can't put it in the hands of fate. Ain't nobody got time to wait."
Other lyrics include:
Apologize, you denied my people
Made our death legal
We all paralegal
Gotta defend ourselves when the laws ain't equal
Cops aim lethal
Death in cathedrals
Bang-bang boogie, you could die wearin' a hoodie
Yeah you say you're sick and tired of us protesting
I say "Not tired enough to make a change'"
"Just you hold on'" I say '"No way, 'cause we can't put it in the hands of fate"
You say that you believe that all lives matter
I say "I don't believe the f*** you do"
I've seen too many of our generations live and die for that pie in the sky
You say, "Those innocent lives should've not been taken"
And I say, "For them is why we take a knee"
You say, "Is that the right play?"
I say, "First Amendment everyday 'cause we can't put it in the hands of fate"
Look, said we ain't talkin' no more, we gettin' to it
Can't put it in the hands of fate, this how we do it
Now let me go and get with all of my people, you know I have to get
That'll show me sacrifice just like my brother Colin Kaepernick
Opportunities that I get to talk, you know I have to spit
Breonna Taylor turn in her grave, you know we have to get justice
And stay in your place, we still focused on the outcome of George Floyd case
Content warning: Rough language):
Stevie Wonder - Can't Put It In The Hands of Fate feat. Rapsody, Cordae, Chika & Busta Rhymes