By Laura Ferreiro
Esperanza Spalding recruited some of the biggest names in music to appear in a new video that urges people and Congress to take action and close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.
The Grammy-winning singer is rallying people in advance of a highly anticipated Senate vote on Guantanamo. “I want to help Congress see that there is public support for the goal of closing Guantanamo,” Spalding says. “The first time I heard about the mass hunger strike at Guantanamo, I was appalled and embarrassed about what my country was doing. As I learned that there were far better options on the table, and that what is going on at Guantanamo is a clear violation of US human rights obligations, I felt I had to do something.”
In the “We Are America” video, Spalding dresses in patriotic red and blue and sings, “I am America, and my America, it don’t stand for this.” Monae appears holding a sign that says, “Congress support President Obama in closing Guantanamo” while Wonder’s placard reads, “Now it’s time for Congress to take effective action and get the job done.”
Spalding urges people to join in the fight to shut down Guantanamo by calling their Congressional representatives and reminding them that indefinite detention and unfair trials are “illegal, un-American and unnecessary.”
The controversial Guantanamo Bay detention camp is a U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba that was established in 2002. The Bush administration claimed that the prison camp was established to detain extraordinarily dangerous prisoners, to interrogate them in an optimal setting and to prosecute prisoners for war crimes, but it has since been widely criticized for its practices of torturing prisoners and not giving them a fair trial.
Check out the “We Are America” video below.