Jay-Z's Roc Nation takes out ads dedicated to George Floyd

Minneapolis pastor sees hope in recent protests

Jay-Z's Roc Nation is taking out full-page ads dedicated to George Floyd and the push for racial justice after his death in police custody in Minneapolis last week. Team Roc, the company's social justice arm, posted the ad on its social media pages and it's also appearing in many major newspapers and magazines this week. 

The ad reprints a passage from a speech Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave after the "Bloody Sunday" civil rights march in Selma, Alabama, in March 1965 — a stirring call to action that he echoed in later speeches as well.

"[I]f a man has not discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live. Deep down in our nonviolent creed is the conviction — that there are some things so dear, some things so precious, some things so eternally true, that they are worth dying for," the quote reads.

"A man dies when he refuses to stand up for that which is right. A man dies when he refuses to stand up for justice. A man dies when he refuses to take a stand for that which is true. So we're going to stand up amid horses. We're going to stand up right here, amid the billy-clubs. We're going to stand up right here amid police dogs, if they have them. We're going to stand up amid tear gas!" it continues.

The bottom of the ad is signed by Jay-Z, civil rights attorneys Ben Crump and S. Lee Merritt, who are representing George Floyd's family, and several civil rights organizations.

It is also signed by family members of Botham Jean, DJ Henry and Antwon Rose II, who were all killed by police. 

On June 2, the ad appeared in 15 publications, including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Denver Post. On June 3, the ad was published in 11 other newspapers, including The Boston Globe, Sacramento Bee and Miami Herald. 

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