Rapper, Belly, and two-time Grammy award winning singer, The Weeknd, say no to The Jimmy Kimmel Live. That is, after learning they would be sharing the stage with Presidential front-runner, Donald Trump, the duo backed out of the appearance. The Weeknd declined any comments about the the bold move. However, Belly has taken at least some of the credit, siting his Muslim faith during a brief statement.
In these situations, fans tend to weigh in heavily on the topic free speech and where the line should be drawn. While many feel Belly and the Weeknd showed a disregard for Donald Trump’s right to speak freely and openly about his views, others praise the two artists, calling the boycott a way of exercising their own version of free speech. This is not the first time celebrities have used the public arena to speak out against Trump’s controversial views. The Republican nominee pushed through his interview with Jimmy Kimmel, appearing to be unmoved bight the slight.
In a press release, Belly expressed an unwillingness to be “part of a celebration for somebody who has beliefs that the majority of us don’t agree with,” implying that his decision was principle-driven. This is a sensitive time for Belly, who has a new mixtape set to be released soon. Despite extraordinary marketing opportunities the show presented, the Canada natives opted to stand by their guns. Kudos.