Former wrestler and movie star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has taken to the internet to release a video condemning the US President Donald Trump for his inaction at a time when the country is reeling under protests.
In the 8-minute-long video, Johnson can be seen calling out the lack of presidential leadership, “Where are you? Where is our leader? Where are you? Where is our leader at this time? At this time when our country is down on its knees, begging, pleading, hurt, angry, frustrated, in pain, begging and pleading with its arms out just wanting to be heard.”
Along with calling him out on his inaction, Johnson can also be seen criticising the president’s use of the military force on peaceful protestors. “There is military force that has been deployed on our own people. Looters, yes. Criminals, absolutely. But on protesters, who are begging and pleading, our protesters who are in pain? You know, you would be surprised how people in pain would respond when you say to them, ‘I care about you.’ When you say to them, ‘I’m listening to you.’”
The Fast and the Furious star calls for compassionate leadership in his video, at a time when the country is under tremendous pressure after the death of 46-year-old George Floyd. Floyd was killed by Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on his neck for 8 minutes 46 seconds.
Johnson ends the video with a call for individuals to unite and become leaders on their own. “As we continue to wait for that leader to emerge, I would recommend to all of you that we must become the leaders we are looking for. We become our own leaders because we’re doing it now. We’re doing it now. We must become the leaders we are looking for.”
Although Johnson does not mention Trump by name, it is clear who he is talking about. The 8-minute video has been viewed by more than one million people and liked 70,000 times in four hours.
The video comes at a time when Trump’s comments about the protests and civil disturbances have been criticised by celebrities and politicians.
“Of course, all lives matter, but in this moment right now, this defining, pivotal, explosive moment where our country is down on its knees…we must say the words: Black lives matter,” says Johnson.
Along with condemning the president, Johnson also thanks people around the world who have shown solidarity with the protests in the Black Lives Matter movement.