In 1993, Prince spoke powerful words that was only one of his many acts of protest: "The first step I have taken towards the ultimate goal of emancipating from the chains that bind me to Warner Bros. was to change my name from Prince to (symbol).” He would reach that goal and then some.
In 1995, Prince sported the word “slave” on his cheek at performances to display how he felt about the Warner Bros. music label controlling his artistic freedom. "If I can't do what I want to do, what am I?” he said.
Nearly a decade after being free from his record deal, the artist spoke up about how Black youth were disproportionately exposed to music that promoted sex, drugs, and violence. “What you won’t show your kids, don’t show ours,” he said.
Prince continued his activism throughout his life, whether it was preaching about Black lives at the Grammys in 2015, or inspiring the launch of a nonprofit supporting Black kids in tech. There wasn’t a time where the Minnesota native was afraid to use his platform to voice and address our everyday concerns.
Prince’s impact on the Black community lives on today and should inspire us all to use our talents to fight back against capitalism, embrace our Blackness, and support our communities.