On September 20, just three days before the United Nations’ Climate Summit, millions of students — and adults — around the world will take to the streets, skipping school and work, to demand that our leaders take immediate action to address the climate crisis.
Inspired by Greta Thunberg, young people are organizing this mass mobilization are calling on everyone to join them. There are over 500 actions planned across the United States and thousands more throughout the world. Read the demands, find a strike near you, and more at StrikeWithUs.org.
We need YOU to join us! Check out how you and your organization or business can participate in the Climate Strike:
The Amazon Rainforest is on fire. The Arctic ice-caps are melting at an alarming rate. The world just experienced the hottest month ever. More intense storms like Hurricane Dorian, Maria, and Katrina are happening every year. Floods, wildfires, and droughts are devastating communities and ecosystems around the world, causing mass migration, rapid species extinction, more conflict, and the spread of infectious diseases. And it’s communities of color and poor people that are hit first and worst.
While we have just 10.5 years to prevent irreversible climate catastrophe, we have only 18 months to create the political pressure necessary so that our leaders will be forced to act right away. In other words, there is hope that if we push world leaders to take necessary action NOW, we can avert the worse. Join us!
SEASON 2: YOUNG PEOPLE WILL WIN!
Think 100% – The Coolest Show on Climate Change is back with an all new season. After taking the show on the road earlier this year, where we interviewed all sorts of movers and shakers in the climate movement and beyond, season two of Hip Hop Caucus’ award-winning podcast is back featuring new episodes, new guests, new venues, and a new look.
Our theme for season two is “Young People Will Win“. Throughout season two we’ll be sharing captivating and informative conversations with young people pushing climate change to the forefront of the political agenda, and invigorating and expanding the climate movement.
In our first episode of season two, co-hosts Antonique Smith and Rev Yearwood are joined live on-stage at the 2019 Netroots Nation conference by Vic Barrett for an intersectional conversation on climate activism, multifaceted identity, and youth driven urgency. Vic along with 21 other courageous young people are suing the U.S. government for its inaction on climate change. Check it out and more at Think100.info and follow @Think100Show to find out more.
Young people have brought climate change to the forefront of the political agenda and taken charge in the climate movement. In Episode 44, Think 100% Show co-hosts Antonique Smith and Rev Yearwood are joined live on-stage at the 2019 Netroots Nation conference by Vic Barrett for an intersectional conversation on climate activism, multifaceted identity, and youth driven urgency.
Vic along with 21 other courageous young people are suing the U.S. government for its inaction on climate change.
Follow Vic (TW: @vict_barrett) to keep up and Our Children’s Trust (TW: @youthvgov) for the latest on the Juliana v US case and how you can support young people. #AllEyesOnJuliana👀
We’re back! After taking the show on the road this year, where we interviewed all sorts of movers and shakers in the climate movement and beyond, season two of Hip Hop Caucus’ award-winning podcast Think 100% – The Coolest Show on Climate Change is here.
Featuring new episodes, new guests, new venues, and a new look, our theme for season two is “Young People Will Win“. Throughout season two we’ll be sharing captivating and informative conversations with young people pushing climate change to the forefront of the political agenda, and invigorating and expanding the climate movement.
Today on August 29, as we recognize the 14th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we are reminded of the importance of bringing the voices of those at the frontlines of climate change to the forefront and our ongoing collective fight for stronger communities and a sustainable planet. Our world is full of beautiful people, cultures, and places, and Think 100% is about how we protect and make the world more beautiful by solving the climate crisis AND creating justice with all the opportunities that exist in a transition to a 100% clean energy world.
In over 40 compelling episodes in season one, we shared breaking news, captivating stories, and dispelled false narratives that communities of color are not engaged in the climate and environmental movement. Catch up on all episodes and stay tuned for more, as we take this journey together.
Get empowered at a special live episode of our award-winning Think 100% Show! This event is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, so come out and join us.
As the closing event of the 2019 National Adaptation Forum, our hosts Antonique Smith, Mustafa Santiago Ali, and Rev Lennox Yearwood Jr., will be joined on stage by fellow movers and shakers taking on the climate crisis and environmental injustice.
Learn about the steps communities at the front-lines of climate change are taking to adapt and solutions that are building stronger communities and helping save the planet for future generations.
WHAT: “Special Live Episode of Hip Hop Caucus’ Think 100%, The Coolest Show On Climate Change”
Hip Hop Caucus’ Think 100% Platform Screens Paris to Pittsburgh Documentary in Cities Across America for Earth Month to Inspire More Grassroots Action in Communities Impacted First and Worst by Climate Change
Documentary distributed by National Geographic tells stories of climate impacts and communities leading on climate solutions in diverse places across the U.S. This Earth Month grassroots screening series will inspire locally led action in 10 major cities across the country.
Washington D.C. (April 11, 2019) – Hip Hop Caucus’ Think 100%: the Coolest Show on Climate Change has partnered with Paris to Pittsburgh producers to screen the recently released National Geographic film at community events Hip Hop Caucus’ city based Leadership Committees have organized. The free screenings will bring together community leaders, advocates, cultural influencers, local government officials, and young people to inspire local climate action. The events will be held throughout the month of April, which is Earth Month, in Orlando, FL, Harlem, NY, Charlotte, NC, VirginiaBeach, VA, Detroit, MI, NewOrleans, LA, Miami, FL, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, CA, and Boston, MA.
Paris to Pittsburgh is a new film from National Geographic, produced by RadicalMedia in partnership with Bloomberg Philanthropies, and narrated by Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning actress and activist Rachel Brosnahan. The film brings to life the impassioned efforts of individuals who are battling the most severe threats of climate change in their own backyards and highlights urban and rural communities’ climate solutions.
“Communities of color and low-income communities are impacted first and worst by climate change. Paris to Pittsburgh does an excellent job telling diverse stories about both climate impacts on people and climate solutions people and local governments are implementing.,” said Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr., Hip Hop Caucus President and CEO and Think 100% Show Co-host. “Everyone can play a role in solving climate change, and the film shows that there is hope in that. We are thrilled that through our Think 100% storytelling platform and our grassroots Leadership Committees we can share Paris to Pittsburgh with local leaders and influencers to educate and move more people to action. ”
The film’s title refers to President Trump’s statement when he announced his intention to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris.” The Mayor of Pittsburgh immediately countered that their city would stick to their commitments to do their part to meet the Paris agreement targets and hundreds of cities followed suit, signing the “We Are Still In” declaration.. Through leadership in states and cities, the United States is more than halfway to its Paris Agreement commitments despite federal inaction.
The free screenings will feature discussions sessions following the film and coordination of a collective action decided upon by the attendees to advance just-solutions to climate change in their local communities.
“Paris to Pittsburgh tells the stories of some the frontline communities who are grappling with the impacts of climate change, and more importantly, developing their own solutions,” said Antha Williams, head of Bloomberg Philanthropies environmental programs and consulting producer for Paris to Pittsburgh. “We are thrilled to partner with Hip Hop Caucus to bring these stories to new audiences and build an even stronger climate movement to protect everyone.”
The screening series kicked off on April 4th last week in Orlando with a live production of Think 100%: the Coolest Show on Climate Change at the National Forum for Black Public Administrators, where conference attendees watched the film and took part in an interactive panel discussion with Chris Castro, film participant and Director of Sustainability & Resilience for the City of Orlando; Michelle Suarez, Regional Director of Organize Florida; Robin Harris, a local climate and environmental justice advocate; and guest Think 100% host Brandi Williams, Hip Hop Caucus Charlotte Coordinator. The rest of the screenings will take place throughout April.
Find the dates, locations, how to RSVP, and more about the screenings series at Think100.info/P2P and follow @Think100Show and @hiphopaucus on social media for the latest from the series this month.
About Hip Hop Caucus (HipHopCaucus.org): Established in 2004, Hip Hop Caucus is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that leverages Hip Hop culture to encourage young people to participate in the democratic process. Through a collaborative leadership network, Hip Hop Caucus addresses core issues impacting young people, underserved, and vulnerable communities. Hip Hop Caucus programs and campaigns support solution-driven community organizing led by today’s young leaders. Learn more at HipHopCaucus.org and follow @hiphopcaucus on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Governor Jay Inslee (WA) is running for President of the United States with action on climate change as his number one priority. In this special episode of Think 100%, he sits down with our co-host Mustafa Santiago Ali to breakdown how he, as the Governor of Washington state, has put communities of color at the forefront of climate solutions and the need for diversity in the environmental movement.
On last week’s episode we shared a clip of an interview our Think 100% Show co-host Rev Yearwood did with Nathan Phillips, the Native American elder and veteran who peacefully stepped in when the students of Covington Catholic High School had worked themselves into a mob on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial following the Indigenous People’s March on January 18th. The videos captured of the encounter were seen around the world and while the initial response was of almost universal horror at the bigotry displayed, within days the narrative had shifted and even President Trump weighed in with support for the Catholic school students.
This special episode of Think 100% aired on the day we remember the Bear River Massacre that took place January 29, 1863. We dive into what happened on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, what the Indigenous People’s Movement is about, what our climate movement can do to follow the knowledge, wisdom and expertise of Indigenous people’s across this country and world, and the crossroads the Catholic Church is at today between a culture of division and bigotry, or a vehicle of peace and nonviolence.
Our guests are inspiring leaders who help us understand what this all means in historical, spiritual, religious, cultural, and political context. We talk with Nathan Phillips, Chase Iron Eyes of Lakota Law Project, Quese IMC, an award winning recording artist and cultural activist, Phyllis Young, of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and Father John Dear, a Catholic priest who has spent 40 years advocating for nonviolence.
Environmental racism is playing out in Union Hill, a predominately African-American community in rural Virginia founded by freed slaves. One of the largest monopoly utilities in the country and corporate donors in Virginia politics is helping run a campaign of disinformation in order to build a massive polluting gas compressor station in the heart of the community as part of the massive Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. In this show our hosts are joined by the actor and activist Tim Guinee, as well as Pastor Paul Wilson, a leader of the #WeAreAlllUnionHill coalition, to breakdown what’s happening in Union Hill, Virginia — a fight you should be involved in if you care about environmental justice, transitioning off fossil fuels, holding elected officials accountable, and protecting the health and heritage of communities. More at friendsofbuckinghamva.org.
On Episode 20, our hosts Antonique Smith, Rev Yearwood, and Mustafa Santiago Ali sit down with leaders working to take our communities from surviving to thriving. Each brings a unique perspective; one as a commissioner on the largest public utility in the country, and one as a longtime community organizer.
Aura Vasquez is an incredible leader, advocate, and activist for environmental and social justice issues. A native of Colombia, she brings her experiences as a Latina immigrant, a woman of color, and successful environmental leader to many issues concerning frontline communities. In May 2017, She was appointed by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to the Board of Commissioners for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power for a five year appointment. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is the largest municipal utility in the United States, serving over four million residents.
Nakisa Gloverhas built a track record as a community organizer from years of corporate, community and service-based work, including building a fusion movement for climate justice as the National Field Coordinator for the Justice Action Mobilization Network (JAMN). She continues to build a network to develop solutions to climate, social and economic justice by fostering relationships with small businesses, faith-based organizations, non-profits, elected officials, colleges and high schools. She recently founded SOL Nation, a local non-profit in North Carolina providing direct pathways to a just transition, resiliency, and revitalization as we move to a Green Economy. Find out more about SOL Nation here.
Think 100% challenges environmental injustices and shares just solutions to climate change, including a transition to 100% clean energy for all. The show is hosted by national civil and human rights, and environmental and climate leaders, Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr., Mustafa Santiago Ali, and Grammy-Nominated Singer & Actress, Antonique Smith. Guests include leaders from communities on the front-lines of climate change, elected officials who are boldly leading, and cultural creators and artists who are reaching hearts and minds.
Why top protest songs in hip-hop don’t mention Donald Trump: ‘He’s irrelevant to the movement’
By DEENA ZARU
Upon jumping into the political fray, Donald Trump — the business mogul-turned president — who was hailed for his wealth and power in lyrics for decades, quickly became hip-hop’s public enemy, number one.
In 2016, anti-Trump chants became rallying calls at concerts and the then-provocative presidential candidate appeared to be on virtually everyone’s lips and in everyone’s Twitter feed. But as Trump’s presidency races into its second year, a notable transformation in hip-hop activism is taking shape.
While Trump still dominates the headlines and drives a congested news cycle, in many of the top protest songs of 2017 and 2018 — some of which have topped the charts, there is virtually no mention of Trump. And that’s because, for a number of activists and artists — including Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar and T.I. who once celebrated Trump’s wealth and power in past lyrics — there is so much more to discuss.
“People are finally getting it — that [Trump’s] irrelevant to the movement.”
Political dissent, which is often energized and, in some cases, driven by the anti-Trump movement, has become so powerful and so all-encompassing that it has transcended Trump, and music released since he became president reflects an evolution in the conversation, according to hip hop industry artists and activists interviewed by ABC News.
Even political songs that do name drop the president are a far cry from YG’s viral 2016 anti-Trump anthem, “FDT” or “F— Donald Trump” or even Eminem’s “The Storm.”
Tracks like “Land of the Free,” by Joey Bada$$, Logic’s “America,” and Kendrick Lamar’s “XXX.,” featuring U2, mention Trump in passing, but each work explores broader systemic injustices.
Even Kanye West, who was under severe backlash from fans for declaring his support for Trump earlier this year, moved the conversation forward by releasing a back-and-forth track based on an actual political conversation he had with Atlanta rapper T.I., who is one of the most outspoken Trump critics in hip-hop.
In “Ye vs. the People,” featuring T.I. as “the people,” the two artists engage in a political debate, address free speech, divisions and racism in America.
And according to Rev. Lennox Yearwood, the president of the nonprofit group, The Hip Hop Caucus, the revitalization of social activism in hip-hop and the evolution of the political conversation shows that “through tragedy is coming triumph.”
“Artists and activists feel like we can’t wait for Trump,” Yearwood said. “We have to get out there now and fight.”
Maimouna Youssef, a Grammy-nominated artist known as Mumu Fresh, said that although activists and artists recognize that “it’s still serious that Trump has the power” to influence policy and politics, “people are finally getting it — that he’s irrelevant to the movement.”
“It’s not going to happen because of him, but in spite of him,” Youssef told ABC News. “We kind of all got tired of the reality show. You see all of the stories and ridiculousness and the tweets…and you turn it off and you go do something more productive with your time.”
“When the movement is strong, the music is strong”
But each is an anthem steeped in political and social commentary on race and racism in America.
“Clearly the old saying is true: ‘When the movement is strong, the music is strong,’ and when the movement is weak, the music is weak,” Yearwood said.
“(Now), when artists do put out political music, it shoots to the top. People need it for their spirits, they need it for their souls, they need it to keep fighting.”
The video for “This is America,” — a provocative commentary about the black experience and the degradation of black bodies and black culture over centuries — is so steeped in historical and modern-day symbols that cultural critics are still unpacking its meaning months after its May release.
Describing it as “a song that speaks to your existence,” Yearwood said that “This is America” is reminiscent of “We Shall Overcome” — the gospel song that became the anthem for the 1960s civil rights movement.
The song was so well-received in the mainstream that it debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 — a spot that is rarely held by such explicitly political songs.
Childish Gambino, whose full name is Donald Glover, won a Grammy earlier this year for the Billboard-charting “Redbone,” a funk-inspired song about a failed a relationship with political undertones. The song is also known as “stay woke” based on words from its chorus, and was featured on the soundtrack for Jordan Peele’s “Get Out,” which won an Oscar for best original screenplay.
“Whenever socially conscious music is successful in the mainstream, it’s a great thing because we don’t get enough of it,” Massachusetts rapper Termanology, whose upcoming album also explores political themes, told ABC News.
“And if it happens naturally, if it’s just meant to be like that, it’s definitely beautiful for us that really care.”
“This is not my America”
From the Black Lives Matter movement, to the Women’s March, the #MeToo movement, the Peoples Climate Movement and the March for Our Lives — a wave of civil disobedience has descended on cities and small towns in America and this energy is reflected in the music.
Janelle Monáe’s 2018 album, “Dirty Computer,” a layered project that explores what it means to be an American, offers a critique of a sick America plagued with inequalities and is also an ode to female empowerment. The outro to “Americans,” reflects these themes:
“Until women can get equal pay for equal work … Until same gender loving people can be who they are … Until black people can come home from a police stop without being shot in the head … Until poor whites can get a shot at being successful … Until Latinos and Latinas don’t have to run from walls, this is not my America.”
And Eminem, who unleashed one of the fiercest attacks against Trump in his viral performance of “The Storm” last fall, followed up with the release of “Revival” — an entire album that largely looks past Trump and reflects on racism and inequalities in America.
“It’s a revival for myself, and it’s kind of the theme of the album, but there’s also, hopefully, the revival of America,” the Detroit rapper said.
In songs like “Untouchable,” which does not mention Trump, Eminem reflects on the progression of the civil rights movement and zeroes in on issues like police brutality and white privilege.
Jay-Z, who on several occasions in years past lauded Trump’s lavish lifestyle and wealth, has since criticized the former business mogul-turned-president’s comments.
But Trump barely ranks a name drop in Jay-Z’s most recent tracks.
Instead, the veteran rapper who has increasingly become a vocal proponent for criminal justice reform, reflects on the black experience in America in his Grammy-nominated album, “4:44.” For instance, the song “The Story of O.J.” explores the subjugation of African-Americans in media and culture over history and examines black stereotypes through the use of black and white cartoons.
This year, Kendrick Lamar’s politically-charged album, “DAMN,” won a Grammy for best rap album and North Carolina rapper Rapsody, who explores black womanhood and identity, in the soulful album “Laila’s Wisdom,” was nominated for best rap album and best rap song.
And then there’s the evolution of Meek Mill, who in the last few months has become one of the most visible advocates for criminal justice reform.
The Philadelphia rapper’s case sparked outrage and reinvigorated a national debate on mass incarceration, when Mill was sentenced to two to four years in prison last November after a pair of arrests that violated his probation from a 2008 gun and drug case.
In the wake of a relentless #FreeMeekMill campaign, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ordered Mill’s release in April.
“I told myself, I told God the moment that I got out of my situation and got back, feet on the ground, I would participate in being a voice for the voiceless,” he said in May.
And his latest releases like “Stay Woke,” featuring Miguel and “Milidelphia,” from his “Legends of the Summer” EP, reflect this calling.
And finally, in one of the starkest artistic evolutions of late, the Black Eyed Peas — who are generally known for upbeat and poppy party jams like “I Gotta Feeling” and “My Humps” — made a comeback in 2018 striking a dramatically different tone.
In “Ring the Alarm pt.1, pt.2, pt.3,” the trio tackles police brutality, while “Get It” is a haunting tribute to unarmed black men and women shot by police. And their third track, “Street Livin’,” is a harrowing account of poverty and mass incarceration punctuated by drum beats and somber tones.
“Ten years ago that was not the landscape,” Youssef said. It was almost like taboo to talk about the social issues. Today it’s in your face, you can’t run away from it. You can’t pretend that racism doesn’t exist.”
Even those who don’t seek out political music, would have found it difficult to avoid social commentary over the last few years because it has seeped into everything from club bangers like YG’s “Big Bank,” viral hits like Kodak Black’s “Tunnel Vision,”and R&B jams like Miguel’s Billboard-charting hit, “Come Through and Chill,”featuring J. Cole.
“Hopefully the younger generation sees that it is cool to spread jewels and spread knowledge and to talk about things that go on in the world,” Termanology said.
“It’s not just about drugs and superficial things … and as long as it’s from the heart, I’m all for it.”