John Legend to the Class of 2021: Embrace our shared humanity, let go of bias and fear (video)

Recording artist John Legend spoke at Duke University’s commencement Sunday, receiving an honorary doctorate at the ceremony.

Legend’s message to the Class of 2021 was to let go of fear and embrace our shared humanity:

“Our nation is at its best when we realize that we all do better when we all do better.”

“Yet, today, we’re still fighting against the old zero-sum thinking that’s been holding us back since the beginning. We see it in efforts to deny people their right to vote. We see it in the shameful attacks on trans rights.”

“And, of course, we see it in our policing and carceral systems: In the simple fact that so many people heard “Black Lives Matter” and assumed it meant that other lives couldn’t matter, too. That’s zero-sum thinking if I’ve ever seen it.”

And when lost, Legend told the audience let love be your North Star.

During his career, Legend has earned Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards. He is also an active philanthropist and supporter of criminal justice reform.

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