Strictly’s Rhys Stephenson’s passionate anti-racism plea after BLM protests
Strictly Come Dancing’s Rhys Stephenson used a clever analogy to explain why some anti-racist protesters might turn into riots amid BLM protests in 2020
CBBC presenter and Strictly Come Dancing star Rhys Stephenson is a familiar face to kids across the country, and he’s hugely successful on social media.
And the benevolent star recognizes the importance of the platform he has, using it to spread an anti-racist message amid the Black Lives Matter protests in 2020.
He posted a video referring to the murder of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin in the United States, and explained why some protesters might feel compelled to riot.
His message was that people affected by racism are not treated fairly and that some of them are tired of responding in a measured way.
“I was watching a video of Trevor Noah today talking about George Floyd’s situation and touching on the riots by talking about society as a whole,” he began.
“And this company is basically a contract, an alliance signed by a group of people saying that we will abide by these rules and that all will do our part for the good of the company.
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“But the problem is that there are people in this society who do not respect the rules that they have enforced, and therefore the riots are a response of blacks or lower class people who rise up and send a message that they are done with this kind of behavior, because if you don’t play by the rules of society, why should we? ”
Rhys then made an analogy to a board game where one person, who strictly enforces the rules on everyone, cheats all the time, and so the other players try to call them up and ask them to stop.
But the cheating player refuses to back down and his cheating is so well hidden that it cannot be proven, and eventually the other players are so fed up that they start cheating too.
“Then the game becomes chaos,” Rhys said. “It’s a mess.”
He continued, “I tie that to life, with the riots, the marginalized, black people say, ‘Well if you don’t play by the rules of society, why the hell should we?’
“Then they loot, they disobey the laws as they know it, they raid and people film it and there is an uproar.
“That’s not to say it’s good, it’s not good, just like everyone who cheats on this game is not good, but these people cheat to send a message to the initial cheater to tell them that cheating is wrong, and how annoying it is to be cheated.
“This is how I feel in these riots, people are sending a message to the authorities to say, ‘This is what it feels like to be cheated when you do not respect the rules of society.'”
Rhys went on to explain that the initial cheater wins the game because he’s so good at cheating, and no matter how hard the other players try, they lose.
And the person who cheated first is able to get up and leave the table – while their teammates don’t have that luxury, just as people affected by racism can’t always just move to another country. .
“They are forced to play this game and lose constantly, so their only hope is that the message finally gets to the cheating person, and that person realizes how bad it is,” he said. he declared, his voice broken with emotion.
“But it’s not a game, it’s real.”
That’s why, Rhys said, he felt it was so important to use his voice and platform to speak out against racism.
“This is why I can no longer be silent,” he concluded.
Rhys subscribers applauded his analogy, with a comment: “Rhys that’s why I love you man! That was perfect!”
“Big words and wisdom, Rhys!” added another.
A third said to him: “Brilliantly put on.
Rhys, who is paired with Nancy Xu on Strictly, narrowly dodged being started early in the series as he survived the dreaded dance, with Ugo Monye sent off instead.
He has since made a comeback and last Saturday he received a perfect score of 40 for his energetic Charleston.
“The dancing was a real shock to the system and I think it really made me appreciate it more than I’m sure. [Strictly], and therefore to think every week, ‘Don’t take this for granted,’ “he said.
“I think at first I put more pressure on myself because sometimes you think if I’m in the bottom two it’s almost like that’s it, your time is limited on the show.
“And I had to get rid of that thought or that thought, if it does, then take advantage of it, because what’s the use of looking back and thinking you’re miserable for these last few moments?
“So it was a lot of soul searching to get over that.”
* Strictly Come Dancing continues Saturday night on BBC One
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