Yesterday, Jay Z made an appearance at Utah’s Sundance Film Festival to promote his new documentary series Time: The Kalief Browder Story, which follows the story of a Bronx teen who commits suicide after being wrongfully imprisoned at Rikers Island. Promoting the movie naturally meant that the mogul also had to give rare face-time to the press.
Jay Z was answering questions about his motivation for making the series when one reporter asked him, “What are your thoughts on Donald Trump?” He bluntly replied he was “not gonna answer that,” before his exasperated fellow executive producer Harvey Weinstein intervened to instruct the press to focus their questions on the movie.
Sure, Jay Z was there to promote a movie. (Why else would Hov be in Utah?) But it is worth looking at Kalief Browder’s story–which is about wrongful imprisonment and criminal justice reform–in the context of Trump’s administration. Last year, Trump made it clear that he stood by the Central Park Five’s wrongful conviction. Earlier this week, he threatened to send the feds to deal with Chicago’s ongoing struggle with gun crime. Both cases point to a pugilistic vision of law enforcement that sees young black men like Browder as collateral damage.
Watch the aforementioned clip of Jay Z’s interview below.
Don’t ask Jay Z no questions about Donald Trump pic.twitter.com/GbOY5Ne88F
— DJ Akademiks (@IamAkademiks) January 26, 2017