As elections become increasingly high-stakes, public figures of all walks have begun to feel a responsibility to use their platform to speak on important topics, including social justice issues and the upcoming presidential election. 32-year-old singer and songwriter Lizzo, whose entire identity has been politicized due to her weight, sexuality, and race, is no exception.
Lizzo’s incorporation of relevant social matters into her lyrics is nothing new though, the Cuz I Love You singer released “My Skin,” a self-love anthem celebrating her blackness back in 2015, upon the police shooting of Jamar Clark in Minneapolis. Known for promoting positivity through her music, Lizzo is a steadfast proponent for hope. In a new interview with Vogue, she acknowledges the need to proceed with caution— as much of the recent upsurge in support of Black Lives Matter by some companies can simply be chalked up to corporations wanting to save face and avoid facing backlash by not saying anything— and she is plain about her intention to vote this November, encouraging her fans to do the same.
“I just want to encourage people to register to vote. That is the most important thing to me. Because there’s a lot of upset people, and there’s a lot of people who have power. There’s a lot of voter suppression in Black communities. But there’s a lot of angry white kids now. And I’m like, ‘Yo, register to vote. Go out. You won’t get suppressed if you try to go to your ballot box.’ You know? I think it’s important to remind people of what they can do. My job isn’t to tell you how to vote. But my job is hopefully to inspire you to vote…to activate you, so that you can take your protest to the ballot box,” she told Vogue.
Lizzo goes on to talk about the often-forgotten role of black women in all this, who are arguably the backbone of many black communities. In the wake of the news that Breonna Taylor’s murderers will not be served just punishment, with only one of the three officers involved, Brett Hankison, being indicted on first-degree wanton endangerment charges, Lizzo’s sentiment is even more relevant.
Finally, on the subject of body positivity, Lizzo seems to have grown tired-- at least of that phrasing: "I think it’s lazy for me to just say I’m body positive at this point," she told the magazine. "It’s easy. I would like to be body-normative. I want to normalize my body. And not just be like, ‘Ooh, look at this cool movement. Being fat is body positive.’ No, being fat is normal. I think now, I owe it to the people who started this to not just stop here. We have to make people uncomfortable again, so that we can continue to change. Change is always uncomfortable, right?"