Tracee Ellis Ross Speaks Out After Jacob Blake Shooting: "This Is A Moment For The Collective Voice"

Tracee Ellis Ross Speaks Out After Jacob Blake Shooting
August 27, 2020 - 21:51 / Hayley Paskevich

In a new interview, Tracee Ellis Ross talked about athletes protesting following the shooting of Jacob Blake! She explained why systemic racism is something everyone needs to take active responsibility in combating, and urged Americans to vote in the upcoming election. See what she said!

Tracee Ellis Ross has spoken out after the shooting of Jacob Blake. Ross shared her thoughts on the topic when she appeared on Wednesday's episode of The Late Late Show With James Corden, addressing how professional athletes— including those from the NBA and WNBA— have been protesting in response.

Ross calls for collective action as a nation in protesting

Ross commended the athletes for their actions, talking about the importance of protesting in response to injustice. Blake was a 29-year-old Black man from Wisconsin who was shot several times in the back, likely becoming paralyzed. "I say bravo. I think is is a moment to take a stand," Ross said. "The truth is, it is not just in response to Jacob... It is one of the most American things you can do, use your voice, take a stand. And I think all of us need to."

"This is a moment for the collective voice, for us saying it is enough. I think we have to be honest and clear about what it is, and not normalize it," Ross continued. "That's one of the reasons I think the NBA using their voice in that way, like yes, bravo. We must continue to do this because we refuse to go back. We have to continue pursuing justice and safe society and a place where you can be at home in your bed and you are safe."

Tracee Ellis Ross attends the 51st NAACP Image Awards presented by BET on February 22, 2020.

Ross on systemic racism: "We all have a part in this"

Ross then went on to say that people need to come together in order for significant change to occur. "It requires all of us collectively to use our voices, our hands," she explained. "Voting is a part of it, protesting is a part of it, being clear about the systemic change that we want to occur is part of it. We all have a part in this and it can't just be one person or the other."

She then made a powerful statement in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. "Jacob is your brother as he is my brother. We cannot disregard for human life or Black humanity, Black bodies, Black life, to be brutalized and violently disregarded in that way," Ross said. "And if we all don't stand up it won't change."

Ross talks importance of voting in 2020 U.S. election

Ross went on to urge Americans to exercise their democratic right by casting a ballot in the 2020 U.S. election, explaining just how crucial it is. "Every election is urgent for those that are upset and marginalized and those that are the most vulnerable. Every one of the elections is, because we are still in pursuit of a safe and just society," she said. "But this election is urgent in a way that they all are, but on top of that."

"There is something very real going on right now and we must participate. I think we have to get informed, so that you know how to participate and which way you about use your hands," Ross continued. "I think the only way that this changes is if each of us understand that we shape our future. We each do that. Our future. We are stronger together. If we don't get involved, then none of it changes. If we are not appalled by what is happening, what does that say about who we are?" 

Tracee Ellis Ross attends the Tom Ford AW20 Show

Ross on people's lack of action: "That blows my mind"

Ross expressed how upset she is by seeing people's apathy and lack of empathy for current circumstances. "That blows my mind. It's appalling. It's heartbreaking. It's infuriating. It's exhausting. It is terrifying. It's all of those things," she said. "So how do we continue? And I personally am looking for those that this is that they do."

"There are organizers, they have the language, they have the act of what it is that we need to to change where we are at," Ross continued. "And so I lean towards those people... There's all of these people that really, that I say like tell us where to go and how to do. But honestly, right now, vote. Vote."

Another celebrity who's used their platform to bring awareness to democracy recently is Billie Eilish, who's been urging her fans to vote. Also, Meghan Markle has been vocal on the topic since she moved back to America, recently speaking out during a 19th Amendment celebration!