*After reports of her participation in Donald Trump’s inauguration surfaced Wednesday, R&B singer Chrisette Michele has responded to the backlash in an open letter posted on her blog titled “We Can’t Be Present If We’re Silent.”
The artist doesn’t outright confirm Wednesday’s New York Daily News report that she agreed to sing for the president “so long as she could perform an R&B set,” but Michele writes that she is “willing to be a bridge” for the country.
“My heart is broken for our country, for the hopes of our children, for the fights of those who came before us,” she writes.
“Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, ‘Our lives begin to end, the day we become silent about what matters.’ I am here, representing you, because this is what matters,” Michele continued.
Read Michele’s full letter below:
“My heart is broken for our country, for the hopes of our children, for the fights of those who came before us.
I cry at the thought that Black History, American History might be in vain.
This country has had great moments. God has shined His light upon us.
Today, I hope that Great Moments begin in peaceful & progressive conversation. I am willing to be a bridge. I don’t mind “These Stones”, if they allow me to be a voice for the voiceless.
I am here.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Our lives begin to end, the day we become silent about what matters,”.
I am here, representing you, because this is what matters.”
– Chrisette Michele
Meanwhile, Michele’s concert scheduled for tonight (Jan 19) at New Jersey’s Starland Ballroom was canceled “due to a scheduling conflict,” according to the venue’s announcement on Twitter.