Niki Ashton, a left-wing politician from Canada, recently removed an ad from Twitter that used Beyoncé’s lyrics “to the left” from the song “Irreplaceable” after coming under heat from Black Lives Matter.
The ad for the New Democratic Party (of Canada) read “To the left, to the left,” hoping to incite movement of opinion toward the political left. Just above the image, Ahston wrote: “Like Beyonce says, to the left. Time for an unapologetic turn for the #NPD, for social, racial, enviro, and economic justice.”
However, the Vancouver chapter of Black Lives Matter responded to the tweet stating that “Appropriating Black culture is not intersectional feminism. Please delete your “to the left” FB post & address the issue.”
Ashton quickly responded to the group, removing the ad from her social media accounts and saying “not our intention to appropriate. We’re committed to a platform of racial justice+would appreciate ur feedback.” She later backed up her position with following a tweet stating that, “Showing respect is what building a movement is all about.”
This news come right on the eve of another questionable choice to use black culture, this time from artist Morrissey who received flak for selling official t-shirts featuring the image of Civil Rights activist James Baldwin.
Although some Twitter users have voiced their opinion that Ashton should have had more of a “backbone” in the situation, the Canadian politician seems to have responded with a sense of tact and grace that we could never expect in the current American political climate. Again, it appears our friends to the north have a thing or two they can show us about social relations.
Listen to the Beyoncé song “Irreplaceable” below, we know it’s been in your head this whole time.