The only thing worse than Kanye West attempting to interrupt the Grammy Awards on Sunday is that the public has made him the main focus of the night. Somehow a 10-second clip of Kanye West being downright disrespectful is blowing up on social media, but the large portion of the award show that promoted equality has been forgotten.
Before Katy Perry performed her ballad “By the Grace of God” at the Grammy Awards on Sunday, President Barack Obama introduced domestic abuse survivor and advocate Brooke Axtell. Axtell captivated audiences with her speech about domestic violence and women’s equality.
The Grammys offered more than the usual fashion competition and popularity contest. It promoted awareness by shining a light on the harsh reality of domestic abuse, racial inequality and it also honored not-so-popular artists.
Though I am a Beyoncé fan myself, Beck winning Album of the Year is not the worst thing Queen B fans have heard. Beyoncé is the most nominated and second most honored woman in Grammy history. She already has 20 Grammy wins to represent her talent. One more Grammy award would not have made a difference, so why has it become such a big deal? The award show has shined a light on Beck, a talented artist who plays 14 instruments, and has been writing his own music since the early 1990s. This subjective decision of a not-so-popular artist, Beck, winning Album of The Year proves the award show was based on more than just glamor.
I am pleased with the Grammy’s for using their power, as the highest-ranked entertainment program, to promote human rights. Music is common ground shared by many people with different backgrounds, cultures, races, sexes and lifestyles, and the Grammys used its powerful influence on the larger majority for good.
Along with the segment on domestic abuse, the award show featured music from the Oscar-nominated film “Selma,” which chronicles the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. John Legend and Common performed “Glory,” whose lyrics reference the recent St. Louis shootings. Beyoncé also advocated civil rights as she sang the classic gospel song, “Take my hand, precious Lord.”
So instead of making Kanye West the center of social media’s attention, and bashing the Grammy show for subjective differences, I will commend the Grammys for its forward- thinking actions. And hope popular events will follow in the footsteps of the Grammys in promoting human rights.