Roc Nation has once again emerged to fight on the side of justice for people of color. From championing the cause of Kalief Browder and Meek Mill against the prison industrial complex to helping 21 Savage fight deportation with legal assistance, Roc Nation’s latest win proves they are in favor of the little guy.
Team ROC, the social justice arm of Roc Nation, employed high-powered lawyer Alex Spiro to assist Florida sixth grader Jabari Talbot, who was arrested at school last month for refusing to participate in reciting the pledge of allegiance in class.
In my opinion, this is one of the thousands of micro-racial instances that make up a pattern of disenfranchisement along racial lines. There are white children in all white school districts regularly engaging in viciously racist behavior. From the sexual assault of a black, disabled football player by white teammates to blackface yearbook photos, white kids are making it an act of cultural expression to be able to express just how much they hate “n*ggers” every chance they get, or at least that’s how it seems.
The “kids” who violated a disabled black teammate never served any time at all. But a sixth-grade black boy is arrested for exercising his rights? Thank God for the Roc.
The system tried to force Jabari Talbot into diversion. Jabari did not commit a crime. Guilty plea refused. Case dismissed. We applaud and support you Jabari. #JabariTalbot
“Jabari is a courageous and intelligent young man who deserves all the credit for standing up for his beliefs,” Spiro stated. “He should’ve never been arrested or entangled in this situation—his freedom of speech rights were clearly protected under the 1st Amendment.”
Talbot said he did not stand because “the flag was racist and the national anthem was offensive to black people.”
His teacher, a Cuban immigrant, then chided him by asking why he still was here (in America) if he didn’t respect the flag, to which he responded: “They brought me here.”
Alvarez answered, “Well you can always go back because I came here from Cuba, and the day I feel I’m not welcome here any more I would find another place to live.”
A really simplistic, dismissive answer to an 11-year-old boy who was exercising his rights.
Not long afterward, Talbot was arrested and as is often the case with black boys, school officials felt the need to report that he disrupted the process and was reluctant to comply.
11-year old Jabari Talbot exercised his freedom of speech by choosing not to participate in the national anthem, which led to his wrongful arrest ◾️ @leonardfournette immediately called to show support & invited him to a game next season ◾️ The case has since been dismissed 🙌
Arresting a sixth grader for not saluting the flag is the type of heavy-handed disciplinary methods used against black kids across the nation, according to multiple studies.
How we go from a teachable moment to the perils of free speech doesn’t matter. The school completely jumped the shark and called the cops. Pathetic.
Thankfully, Jay Z and Team ROC saw the injustice and acted.