An estimated 123 black Americans have been shot and killed by police this year alone, with the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile in July sparking Black Lives Matter protests across the US and UK. The situation in the UK shouldn't be ignored, either. In 2011, Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old Tottenham resident, was shot and killed by police in Tottenham. In 2013, 21-year-old Julian Cole was left in a vegetative state after he was detained by police. Last year, 31-year-old Sheku Bayoh died in police custody. Four years ago, Sarah Reed was thrown to the ground, grabbed by the hair and punched three times in the head by an officer as he arrested her on suspicion of shoplifting. She was found dead in her prison cell earlier this year.
"Enough is enough," Stormzy wrote in a post on Instagram at the time urging people in the UK not to be complacent about racism and police brutality, "That could easily be me or my lil brother or my sisters, I ain't waiting for this poisonous, weak, racist, trigger happy mentality to spread around the world before we do something." Today, NoLay – easily one of the most underrated rappers in the UK right now (see this freestyle for evidence) – has dropped a rightly furious track titled “Black Lives Matter” that tackles institutionalised racism within the criminal justice system, the problem with saying "all lives matter", and the deaths of over 1500 people in custody in the UK.