Beyoncé urges black fans to ‘dismantle a racist and unequal system’ while accepting BET humanitarian award

Singer received humanitarian award from Michelle Obama

Beyoncé gives speech at BET Awards

Beyoncé encouraged her black fans to “vote like our life depends on it” in the forthcoming US presidential election, as she accepted the humanitarian award at the BET Awards.

The “Formation” singer received the accolade during Sunday (28 June) night’s awards ceremony hosted by the Black Entertainment Television network, with Michelle Obama virtually handing over the prize as she praised Beyoncé for “calling out sexism and racism when she sees it”.

“You can see it in everything she does, from her music that gives voice to black joy and black pain, to her activism that demands justice for black lives,” Obama said.

Thanking BET for “this beautiful honour”, Beyoncé replied: “I want to dedicate this award to all of my brothers out there, all of my sisters out there inspiring me, marching and fighting for change. Your voices are being heard and you’re proving to our ancestors that their struggles were not in vain.

“Now we have one more thing we need to do to walk in our true power, and that is to vote,” she continued. “I’m encouraging you to continue to take action, continue to change and dismantle a racist and unequal system.

“There are people banking on us staying at home during local elections and primaries happening in states across the country. We have to vote like our life depends on it, because it does.”

Earlier on Sunday, Disney+ shared the trailer for a new film from Beyoncé titled Black is King, which is influenced by her work on the live action version of The Lion King.

The visual album has been described as “a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience” and will be released on Disney+ on 31 July.

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