Musical artists Macklemore & Ryan Lewis took a moment to honor Trayvon Martin at the American Music Awards Sunday night.
While accepting an award for favorite rap/hip-hop album, Macklemore quoted Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., before speaking out about slain Florida teen, Trayvon Martin.
“Due to the fact that we are in Florida tonight accepting this award, I want to acknowledge Trayvon Martin and the hundreds and hundreds of kids each year that are dying due to racial profiling and the violence that follows it,” Macklemore, whose given name is Ben Haggarty, said. “This is really happening. These are our friends, our neighbors, our peers, and our fans, and it’s time that we look out for the youth and fight against racism and the laws that protect it.”
The musical duo have been known for promoting social justice on divisive issues in the past. The song “Same Love,” a top hit off their award winning album, The Heist, openly addresses homophobia and supports marriage equality. Macklemore has criticized hip hop culture for misogyny as well.
Shortly after George Zimmerman was acquitted of all charges in the shooting death of the 17-year-old Martin, civil rights leaders renewed their call for a Justice Department investigation into whether or not the shooting warranted civil rights charges against Zimmerman, with many concerned that he might have racially profiled the teenager. According to a recent Washington Post report, the Justice Department is expected to announce its findings in that investigation soon.