Shock waves were felt around the world after last night’s grand jury decision in Ferguson, Missouri, but the decision—and ensuing protests—were literally just down the road for Run The Jewels. The hip-hop duo was booked to perform at The Ready Room in St. Louis, a mere 10 miles from Ferguson, and before the show Killer Mike, who has spoken out about Michael Brown’s death in the past, took a moment to make an emotional statement on the decision and its impact on him personally as well as America in general.
After expressing his support for Brown’s family and the protesters in Ferguson and the powerful emotions the decision inspired in him, Killer Mike appeared on the verge of tears as he said, “I have a 20-year-old son, I have a 12-year-old son, and I’m so afraid for them…When I stood in front of my wife, and I hugged her, and I cried like a baby. I said ‘these motherfuckers got me today.’”
To the vocal support of the crowd, he went on to talk about rejecting racist systems, saying “we know you don’t value my skin, and we know you do value his [pointing at El-P], but you know what, we’re friends, and nothing is going to devalue that.” He ended his speech by referencing the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. and saying, “It’s not about race, it’s not about class, it is not about color, it is about what they killed [Michael Brown] for. It is about poverty, it is about greed, and it is about a war machine…the one thing I want you to know is that it is us against the motherfucking machine.”
The entirety of Killer Mike’s statement as captured by audience member Stephen Bolen is below.