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Is “I Take Responsibility” The New “Imagine?”

(Image from “I Take Responsibility”)

On June 10, the “I Take Responsibility” campaign launched with a video. In partnership with the NAACP, celebrities say that they take responsibility for daily acts of racism. Kristen Bell, Aaron Paul, and Sarah Paulson were among the group that participated in the video — notably all the participants are white.

The video ends with a call to action. The ending card encourages readers to “take action today” at the corresponding website and to use the hashtag “itakeresponsibility.” The website also states that the campaign’s mission is “to rally the white community, to provide education and encourage action.” The site has links to anti-racist organizations like the Black Lives Matter Global Network where people can donate, sign petitions, and join groups to learn more about systemic racism.

Many people mocked the video for being shallow, not encouraging real action, and just being  an opportunity for celebrities to virtue signal. Twitter user Josh Spiegel voices his frustrations, saying “Talking earnestly for 30 seconds on a cellphone video is not taking responsibility … But thanks for this month’s “Celebrities sing Imagine” video, I guess?” Others criticize the celebrities for simply looking like they were using their acting skills.

Still, some thought the effort was admirable at the least, saying things like “Celebrities’ high visibility makes this type of PSA a worthy first step,”and “it’s a much better message and use of their voices than people singing a bad Beatles song.” (Yeah I know “Imagine” is a John Lennon song, and not a Beatles song, but it was used by a group of celebrities in a similar video to “I Take Responsibility.”)

  • Is “I Take Responsibility” The New “Imagine?”

    • “I Take Responsibility” gets a pass because at least it’s not singing
    • “I Take Responsibility” is worse
    • They’re both equally terrible
    • Actually, I liked “Imagine”


Written by Abby Sacks

Student at the University of Virginia studying Psychology and Media Studies. When not writing or hanging out with my cat, can be found watching too much bad TV and being too old for TikTok but enjoying it anyway.

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