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Janelle Monáe Has A Very Personal Reason For Why Voting Is So Important To Her

Singer-songwriter and actress Janelle Monáe is serious about voting and she wants you to get serious too. The outspoken activist shared her story with the nonpartisan organization When We All Vote to help get the word out that everyone needs to vote.

Monáe tells People Magazine the touching story of her grandmother who encouraged the young Monáe to use her voice. She says:

“My grandmother was a sharecropper. She served food in the county jail for 25 years. She picked cotton, shared one pair of shoes with her 14 brothers and sisters in Aberdeen, Mississippi. Then she migrated to Kansas City, Kansas. And she did not have the right to vote.”

She made me promise to her that anytime I had the opportunity to vote, that I would. So, even though all the candidates are not perfect, in honor of my grandmother, I take my butt to the polls.”

“As for the issues she holds dear to her heart:

I do care about the rights of the LGBTQI community that I’m a part of, I do care about women’s rights, I’m a woman, I do care about black folks, minority rights, I’m a black person living in America.

There are a lot of things that I care about, and so, I try to figure out ways in my shows to use my platform to support certain folks. I want to make sure that even in this political climate, that we are taking into consideration, as they’re making new laws, as folks are running for office, like who cares about those things that I care about.”

Monáe discussed some of her fears around politics in a video with 92nd Street Y.

The star recently appeared on CBS This Morning to keep the conversation going.

She is even using her platform on tour. 

Next step? Take on former First Lady Michelle Obama’s voting challenge. 

Challenge accepted! 


Now get on out there and vote!

H/T: Essence, People


Written by Jonna Ivin

Jonna Ivin is the founder of STIR Journal and writer of the essay, I Know Why Poor Whites Chant, Trump, Trump, Trump. She has appeared on NPR, OPB, The Roland Martin Show and KCRW. Jonna is the author of the books Will Love For Crumbs, 8th Amendment, and, Sister Girl. Her writing has been featured in Good Magazine, STIR Journal, The Establishment, and xoJane. Twitter @jonnaivin