Blogging Assignment #2: The Hate U Give By Angie Thomas

The song “Freedom” by Beyonce feat. Kendrick Lamar is linked to the challenges and distinctive qualities of African-Americans. The song is inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement. Beyonce’s voice emphasizes female empowerment, while the initial focus of Kendrick Lamar’s verse is on the difficulties that Black men in America confront, including racial profiling and the possibility of being murdered. He later acknowledges his “mom,” who could be either his mother or his lover. In essence, he is advising her to maintain her composure and positive outlook despite whatever may happen to him. 

Recording of the song on Youtube

Tryna rain, tryna rain on the thunder

Tell the storm I’m new

I’ma walk, I’ma march on the regular

Painting white flags blue

Lord, forgive me, I’ve been running

Running blind in truth

I’ma rain, I’ma rain on this bitter love

Tell the sweet I’m new

I’m telling these tears, “Go and fall away, fall away,” oh

May the last one burn into flames

Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move

Freedom, cut me loose! Yeah

Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?

‘Cause I need freedom, too!

I break chains all by myself

Won’t let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I’ma keep running

‘Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

I’ma wade, I’ma wave through the waters

Tell the tide, “Don’t move”

I’ma riot, I’ma riot through your borders

Call me bulletproof

Lord, forgive me, I’ve been runnin’

Runnin’ blind in truth

I’ma wade, I’ma wave through your shallow love

Tell the deep I’m new

I’m telling these tears, “Go and fall away, fall away,” oh

May the last one burn into flames

Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move

Freedom, cut me loose!

Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?

‘Cause I need freedom, too!

I break chains all by myself

Won’t let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I’ma keep running

‘Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

Ten Hail Marys, I meditate for practice

Channel 9 news tell me I’m movin’ backwards

Eight blocks left, death is around the corner

Seven misleadin’ statements ’bout my persona

Six headlights wavin’ in my direction (Come on)

Five-O askin’ me what’s in my possession

Yeah, I keep runnin’, jump in the aqueducts

Fire hydrants and hazardous

Smoke alarms on the back of us

But mama, don’t cry for me, ride for me

Try for me, live for me

Breathe for me, sing for me

Honestly guidin’ me

I could be more than I gotta be

Stole from me, lied to me, nation hypocrisy

Code on me, drive on me

Wicked, my spirit inspired me, like yeah

Open correctional gates in higher desert (Yeah)

Open our mind as we cast away oppression (Yeah)

Open the streets and watch our beliefs

And when they carve my name inside the concrete

I pray it forever reads

Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move

Freedom, cut me loose!

Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?

‘Cause I need freedom, too!

I break chains all by myself

Won’t let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I’ma keep running

‘Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

What you want from me?

Is it truth you seek? Oh, father, can you hear me?

What you want from me?

Is it truth you seek? Oh, father, can you hear me?

Hear me out

I had my ups and downs, but I always find the inner strength to pull myself up. I was served lemons, but I made lemonade

The Hate U Give depicts many critical social issues that many people of color, unfortunately, are still dealing with in today’s day. Racial injustice should not be tolerated, and neither discrimination and violence toward communities of color. In the rising action, when Khalil is shot three times in the back by One-Fifteen, Khalil falls to the ground as Starr stares in terror as her friend spouts blood. As he passes away, she sprints from the car to his side. She is told not to move, and 115 aims a gun at her. His death is bloody, brutal, and pointless. The intensity of 115 is demonstrated by the fact that he immediately aims a gun at Starr. The chorus of this song speaks the most powerful part that highlights Thomas’s message:

Freedom

Freedom

I can’t move

Freedom, cut me loose

Singin’, freedom

Freedom

Where are you?

‘Cause I need freedom, too

I break chains all by myself

Won’t let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I’ma keep running

‘Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

“’Everybody wants to talk about how Khalil died,’” I say. “’But this isn’t about how Khalil died. It’s about the fact that he lived. His life mattered. Khalil lived!” I look at the cops again.’” (179) Khalil is more than just a victim in the novel. With this drastic turn, Starr goes from being a sorrowful and timid person to a fearless campaigner. Starr is anxious and unsure of whether the correct words will come to her even after she boards the police cruiser. However, Starr ultimately just talks from the heart, and her fervent appeal moves the crowd that the protesters pay more attention to Khalil’s life than his death. Despite the tragedy of Khalil’s death, it is important to remember that he was a real person with his own hopes and goals. Starr is aware that even unintentional dehumanization of African Americans results in violence and fatalities at the hands of authorities.

This book brings up the ways in which racism and violence against black people are justified by societal preconceptions of them. The way One-Fifteen excuses himself for killing Khalil is where we can see this discrimination in action. Other than One-Fifteen’s assumption that Khalil is violent because he is black, there is no other reason for him to believe that Khalil’s hairbrush is truly a gun. Therefore, Beyonce’s song “Freedom” seeks justice, just like how the main character wants to protest for the Black community. There are many messages from Beyonce from the lines like “I can’t move, Freedom, cut me loose!” and “Won’t let my freedom rot in hell!” She is referring to both the post-slavery era and the parallels between it and the present. She promises to march and walk. She will continue to move forward each day by passing white people.

One thought on “Blogging Assignment #2: The Hate U Give By Angie Thomas

  1. Carrie Hintz

    Hi Stefanny, You did a beautiful job with this post; this is an excellent choice of song for this book, and I like how you related it back to the book so thoroughly and with such insight! Carrie

    Reply

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