The commotion and controversy generated by this new song by Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover around the world is undeniable.
If you have not seen and heard his new song "This is America" yet, I recommend you to do it before continuing reading this post.
Different media have tried to get Donald Glover a quick guide to understand his new composition, but the artist has been quite hermetic at the time of giving no clue to understand this production and pointed out; "I just wanted to make a good track that people liked." With this response, the artist invites us to think that what he wants is for the public to think for himself.
In the video you can see winks to the public, it must be watched several times to gradually draw conclusions about what pretend to say with this image or with this other one.
Different interpretations of the meaning of the staging of the videoclip circulate on the Internet, but what is evident at first glance is that it is a criticism of what is happening in the United States today and that, in part, is comparably to the rest of the world.
The video clip itself is a constant complaint to different realities that converge in that country. And he does it in a very peculiar way. If you notice, in the video everything that happens behind the singer is out of focus, in the background, while the artist distracts your eyes towards him and the students who accompany him in their dances.
It is an ingenious way of denouncing that we are all day by day distracted by banal entertainment, while in the world and in reality things of great importance happen for individuals in particular, for collectives in general and for society as a whole.
You can see the singer dressed elegant from the waist down while from the waist up dressed as a neighborhood rapper, a way to portray and denounce social inequalities.
As soon as he shoots a person with the head covered and hand tied, the singer says "This is America." How raw, right? A scene full of symbolism, where the capped head represents the indiscrimination of the killings by firearms and at the same time denounces the impotence of not knowing who is going to be the next madman who starts shooting. Tied hands symbolize impotence of not being able to do anything to avoid it, if it happens, it happened. "This is America".
The artist denounces, through the young man who picks up with a red rag the singer's weapon, that the weapon lobby in the USA has his hands stained with blood (red rag) due to his immobility when making legislative changes with respect to the law of arms.
The representation of the slaughter in a church in Charleston almost three years ago returns to denounce the weapons law, which, as Obama said time ago, is an obsolete law created in the S. XVIII century and must be updated to S. XXI, because we no longer live in the Midwest.
A scene that goes unnoticed is the one that the individual who jumps from the second floor to commit suicide, denouncing the silence and taboo suffered by the victims of suicide, if you have not noticed, go back and take a look at the video and you will see that a man jump from the railing. It is a subject that no one likes to talk about, but unfortunately, it is very present day by day and not only in the United States. For example, in Spain statistics collect about four thousand deaths per year by suicide, but disclosure associations on the problem of suicide underline that not half of cases are collected and they calculate that the real figure is around ten thousand cases of death suicide per year in Spain, since many of them are registered as accidental death.
A current issue is bulling or school abuse. Today, this phenomenon is given greater visibility, according to experts, it has always existed. Nowadays it is more visible because many fights or school abuses are recorded by other children with their smartphone while they watch to laugh and share it in social networks without doing anything, as if it were a chapter of Black Mirror. You can see it at minute 2:27 of the video clip.
There is a moment when the music stops, everything remains silent and the singer seems to recover his sanity. There are no longer hilarious gestures or threatening postures, but a thoughtful man who stops to light a joint to escape from everything around him and acquire a bit of serenity and perspective regarding the noise, violence and problems that surround him day after day. At the end of the day we think that it portrays cannabis as an escape valve, as a medicine that makes us recover a little inner peace, and relaxation.
Finally, we can see Childish Gambino running with a panic, escaping from the darkness towards the light and it seems that he is being chased by white people, while lirycs says: "You are simply a black man in this world, you are a barcode" .
A hard reflection on what it is to be black today in the United States.