A-list celebrities have taken to social media to express their outrage over the Flint water crisis.
The city, situated in southeast Michigan, switched its water source in April 2014 amid a financial state of emergency. Following the switch, residents noted that the water had turned a strange color and smelled and tasted funny.
A class-action lawsuit was filed by Flint residents against Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder in November 2015, for failing to add an anti-corosive agent to the water, which consequently eroded pipes and let lead seep into the flow. When found in excessive levels in children, lead is a toxin that can lead to long-term neurological damage. This week two additional class-action suits have been filed.
Flint's racial makeup is said to be 56.6% African-American, according to the United States Census Bureau — a highly concentrated black population compared to the rest of Michigan, which is 14.2% African-American.
Diddy this week reposted an ACLU of Michigan Instagram video, which called the lead poisoning of Flint, a "genocide."
“This is a racial killing. Flint MI is 60% black. When u knowingly poison a black city, u r committing a version of genocide. #ArrestGovSnyder.”
Rapper Meek Mill, meanwhile, announced on Instagram that he is donating $50,000 for the cause. According to TMZ the money is going to the Flint Child and Family Health Development Fund, which fights the adverse effects of ingesting lead-filled H20. It is said Mill is also sending 60,000 bottles of “JUST Water” to the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan. Pop-icon Cher has similarly donated supplies, by partnering with “Icelandic Glacial” to send 181,440 bottles of water to Flint by Wednesday morning.
Other notable celebrities have tweeted:
Why we worried about the Oscars? We need to be worried about what's going on in Flint and Chicago. Mlk didn't die for shows and trophies. — Young Jeezy (@Jeezy) January 19, 2016
As you all know, I'm from Lansing, MI, which is down the street from Flint and I can't believe that this is happening in my home state.
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 19, 2016