NEW YORK •Pop star Justin Bieber, known more for headline-grabbing scandals than activism, took an unexpected political turn last Friday as he backed the Black Lives Matter movement.
The 23-year-old, who abruptly cut short a tour in July, took to Instagram to show support for the movement that has arisen in response to police killings of African Americans.
"I am a white Canadian and I will never know what it feels like to be an African American, but what I do know is I am willing to stand up and use my voice to shine light on racism," he wrote.
"It's a real thing and it's more prevalent now than I have ever seen in my lifetime," he added. "We're all God's children and we are all equal."
He has generally steered clear of politics at a time when much of the American entertainment world is opposed to United States President Donald Trump.
A graduate of Catholic schools and a self-described Christian, Bieber denounced abortion as murder in a 2011 interview, but has been careful not to discuss politics since.
He goes to Hillsong, a Pentecostal mega-church in Los Angeles attended by stars including singer-songwriter Nick Jonas and singer Selena Gomez, and which is reported to have advised Bieber to pull out of the world tour. He said last month he needed time to work out some "insecurities".
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, THE GUARDIAN