Lecrae, Marvin Sapp, Natalie Grant, and Other Artists Join Kirk Franklin in Boycott of TBN, Dove Awards, and Gospel Music Association

Lecrae poses with his award for Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song for “Messengers” backstage at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California, February 8, 2015. | (Photo: Reuters/Mike Blake)

Rapper Lecrae, Marvin Sapp, contemporary Christian artist Natalie Grant and an avalanche of gospel and secular artists are voicing their support for Kirk Franklin’s boycott of TBN, the Gospel Music Association, and the Dove Awards until they address the musicians’ diversity concerns.

The support comes after Franklin charged in a Monday video statement on Instagram that TBN removed parts of his acceptance speeches from his 2016 and 2019 appearances at Dove Awards shows which advocated for racial justice and reconciliation. He charged that when he approached representatives from all the organizations about the situation, he was not provided a satisfactory response. The GMA said in a statement that it’s now working toward addressing Franklin’s concerns.

While Franklin said his decision to boycott the organizations was personal and he was not asking anyone else to join him, influential icons such as Lecrae, who has long been speaking out on issues of racial justice, quickly chimed in.

“I only came cause you came. You know I’m out,” Lecrae responded to Franklin’s post.

In 2015, Lecrae challenged his “white brothers and sisters” to explain why they never protest when he talks about issues like abortion or the Islamic State terror group, but usually express concern when he speaks out about racial injustice.

“I have historically posted things about abortion, Planned Parenthood, and my thoughts on that. I’ve sat down with leading thinkers and pastors. I’ve done videos, posted those videos. Talked about ISIS and the terror that is ISIS and how it has affected us all, it affected our Christian brothers and sisters throughout the world,” said the rapper in the video posted to his Facebook page.

“In both of those instances I have received encouragement and people saying thank you for speaking about this. We appreciate this, specifically from my white brothers and sisters. But yet, when I’ve spoken out recently about what I see to be authoritative or racial injustice, there is this sentiment of what feels like hostility,” he added.

Grant, who has won multiple Dove Awards, praised Franklin for “consistently calling us toward unity.”

“Love and respect you so much. Thank you for using your platform to speak truth in love, and always with a spirit of humility. You’re consistently calling us toward unity,” she said.

John Gray, senior pastor of Relentless Church in South Carolina, said: “You’ve been my brother since I was 22. I know exactly what you feel. I not only support you — I agree. The selective editing of your content — especially right now — cannot be overlooked. Change MUST HAPPEN NOW. I stand with you.”

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leonardo Blair

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