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Breaking down 'This Is America,' Childish Gambino's chilling new video

Published on May 7, 2018
Childish Gambino, a.k.a. Donald Glover, released a powerful new music video examining the gun violence epidemic in America. Read more: wapo.st/2jElliP. Subscribe to The Washington Post on US-tv: bit.ly/2qiJ4dy
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  • THE LORD IS GOING TO COME.......AND TROUBLE THE WATER!!!

  • Pico pal k lee

  • Hocho Pun Natchtrup. Dance and sing like headless chickens, sport and running around like donkeys to keep a nation entertained. But where is the social welfare and education program for the black and ethnics living the USA dream. The free world has tried and failed so what is the next phase, catch 22 free healthcare to criminals, pimps, muggers, druggies.

  • 0:58 ppl never note that the only car that's different is the car he's dancing on, it's a Toyota, not a American car.

  • Not exactly

  • It's also statement about the ruling elite and the polity turning black entertainers into "Uncle Toms". GB is playing the part of the Uncle Tom and telling us what is really going on. The kids follow and and dance like him mindlessly and blindly not even noticing the carnage going on around them. But of course because they're just kids who are easily distracted. GB then advises the kids above to use their cell phones to record anything that might be of importance and then warns the dancing school kids to watch out for people like him (Uncle Toms). When he mimes pointing the gun, the kids immediately run away. He then takes a moment for pause (17 seconds to commemorate the 17 students killed in Florida) and lights up a joint. He jumps onto the old red car (red symbolism and confederate symbolism is rife throughout) and throws his joint as if to say "smoke break is over and now back to work" (back to the dancing!). But this time the kids aren't following his dance anymore though there is an attractive lady (SZA) who is still very interested and enamored with Gambino. But Gambino is just a "big dawg" in a kennel in someones backyard, and that someone aint happy about Gambino warning the kids!

  • you see what you wanna see, cool video imo

  • It is just a celebration of disregard for laws, and a civil society.

  • black boy with big big huge pe pe mine soo small cuz i Asian

  • I did have goosebumps when I heard that song for the first time, even right now I had it.

  • I feel like the part regarding the kids was suppose to represent how care-free there lives are suppose to be at this stage in there lives but they are in the midst of chaos and commotion like all the school shootings that's been going on. Also I feel there's a subliminal message about poor education for blacks and how America tries to categories us all therefore places us in uniforms is symbolic for giving us all the same stereotype due to some of our behaviors. Due to the stereotype that's been placed on all of us for quite some time now it has caused fear in those who have authority and power. They've been abusing there power for too long. And each time they give an assumption that leads to the catastrophe that leaves someone dead. Final thought: stop judging us by our appearance, attire, but by our attitude and actions. 🙏🏾 Amen

  • Truth about America...

  • It’s been 2 months, finally watched this and it’s not even the same pose as the Jim Crow character

  • the "nations" gun violence epidemic??????? NO, the issue is black criminality and their culture of violence. More idiotic propaganda from the liberal left shit rag wash post.

  • Yes, because the solution is to blame the nation and not the communities. Certain people in America have to take responsibility for their actions instead of blaming the rest of the world, and those people know who they are.

  • I think the scene with the teens is about the younger generation taking after him too

  • Wake up time black America.

  • Liberals hate America you guys are done for as a political party this video is why.

  • People dont notice the backround sounds which include Migos and they try to point out how it affects their fans singing about getting money by selling drugs, usage of drugs, gun violence and so on..

  • *MAKE THE WORLD GREAT AGAIN*

  • Shid. This is a masterpiece.

  • 0:28 bro i live in charelston and i didnt get that much respect childish gambino

  • At the end he has woken from the Corruption and is then chased by police. Idk i might just be rambling or being dumb.

  • The Definition Of The Dancing Is That Music And Entertainment Distracts You From What ACTUALLY Going On I Bet It Discracted Y'all Too.

  • All about the vid. Lyrically, he's not saying anything that can't be easily interpreted.

  • so deep

  • This is still a terrible song!! Hip Hop is dead

  • Your crazy

  • You missed something near the end of the song there is a person wearing a black hoodie with black pants, that means its a sign of apocalypse. Note, he also was riding a white horse.

  • The video isnt chilling you fucking swine.

  • The big story turns out he ripped the song off.... it’s not even his art....too funny

  • The video is about black culture and how things need to change.

  • they made this guy into lando... now why you think solo FLOPPED????

  • if you think about he is the smartest person in music history atm

  • What about the 17 seconds in the end of the song? Isn’t that supposed to represent the 17 kids that died in a school shooting?

  • The choir is also a reference to the prosperity doctrine prevalent in America. They're singing about getting your money.

  • The picture in the thumbnail creeps me out Not being racist.. I'm not talking about that because of his skin color. NO! It's just the face and the fingers and the pose he makes..

  • 0:28 Unsatisfying

  • Video was so powerful, I needed a tutorial.

  • Would it be a stretch to say that the Jim Crow stance is symbolism for when white people in the past portrayed African Americans to be a dangerous violent unintelligent race; and that maybe he's pointing out how some black people nowadays are living up to this caricature making blacks as a whole look bad?

  • So what is this? Is he saying he is gonna cut his dick off and we all gotta pretend nothing happened?

  • Black-Europe web page...

  • im not sure but maybe the ending is referencing the shooting Stephen Clark?

  • good video

  • ok gun violence are you sure about that, gun violence is defiantly not that high. with all of the fat people diabetes defiantly kills more and car crashes yeah but guns are the problem.

    • Christopher O BD other than the facts there has been more than 20 school shootings so far

  • Just know the dance is trying to distract you from thr violence thats happening in the background

  • The Jim Crow figure is kind of scary

  • KKK confirmed

  • First time i saw the music video, didn't really understand the content, or the message of the video. Brilliant video, and a masterpiece.

  • A black guy kills white people no news coverage a white person kills a black people the whole country is in an uproar

  • I get a kick out of watching black people piss cry and moan about the way they are being held back in this country. It’s a bunch of crap they are living in some of the easiest times in history and all they have to do is have a few kids and get on welfare in their ways paid over the big bad white people Give me a break

  • Excuse me Washington post but there is a bit of silence in the video (17 seconds) that is meant to symbolise the 17 people who died in a school shooting

  • I love your video

  • THAT COCAINE IS A HELL OF A DRUG

  • Stop recommending this same shitty video to me - it's stupid, it's offensive, it's ugly, it's hate filled, and it's not America it's anti-America. Some loser can dance sorta mediocre and sheep make him a god because he brought guns onboard. Idiots. And can any artist of today NOT RELY ON AUTOTUNE BTW? GOD! NO TALENT. My manicurist could do better and she doesn't even speak English but would be more coherent. This guy is a joke and I hope this ends the borderline harassing level of "recommendations" to me to watch this ugly ass video. Move!!!! If you hate America... GTFO.

  • My name is jeff

  • Also the pants he was wearing was apparently used by Confederate soldiers. I'm not too sure though.

  • The dance he does it just ew... And that twisted guy. God...

  • Childish Gambino, I didn't know anything about him until I seen this video said, a lot of people that follow that west rapper and look at those African video for dance moves. Then all the things he seen on your utube channel and all the things you tweeted about that happened during 2017 and still going on now. What I gather from this video, is that things are being covered up its all nice on the outside and messed up where it counts on the inside. When the video first started an innocent man got shot from behind but he knew it was going to happen because he had his head covered. He just didn't know when he was going to get shot. Then later in the video when Childish Gambino is dancing on top of a car the man starts to playing his guitar again.

  • *_America created by liberals, fucked up by liberals. Injecting illegal drugs (despise war on drugs), promoting street gang violence where thugs have rights & integrating uncontrolled undocumented illegal immigrants into society. Liberalism is one hell of a CANCER!!_*

  • 0:03 No, not really.

  • The end of the video showed him getting beaten by US police. So all of your shitty interpretations of his actions eventually get put down. Don't use this video as a definition of America to promote your Anti-Right belifs. Support the 2nd Amendment.

  • i love how this is shows what goes down, and how people look to the disasters way for a quick second , and then pretend like it was nothing

  • i wonder if anyone actually *died* in the making of this song

  • holy shit dudes this blew my fucking mind

  • What he was smoking was a joint in the music video, I wonder if that has anything to do with him being chased down the dark hallway, like condemning smoking worse than guns ? Just me ?

  • thank you david hogg for your brave work in keeping this country safe

  • "I know it's a long shot, but I think the man riding that white horse in a black hood represents DEATH!"

  • The video could have more accurately been titled, "This is The United States of America." America refers to the landmass itself, and not all of the other countries of North, South, and Central America have the same gun violence problem. Greetings from Canada.

  • I keep on hearing this is Gorilla WHOO 0:53

  • 0:30 to be continued

  • Most half-@$$ed attempt at *reading too much into it* ever... The music video is obviously propaganda promoting breast feeding with male teats.

  • Good

  • Basically, dont get rid of your guns because you wont have any protection to defend yourself. fight back and dont let these idiots take our guns away so the ones with guns can kill the ones who were idiots to give away thier guns and have thise idiots dieng and run run run run.

  • ga ga ga ga

  • Really...

  • PROPAGANDA.

  • I hardly doubt childish gambino even knows what symbolisn is.

  • For the last part when he’s getting chased down the hallway, I think of it as he shoots people, everyone goes on and ignores it. But the little things like him lighting up some weed gets noticed and is chased

  • the song sucks but has a deep meaning

  • This song has a couple hidden meanings and so far he got Most of them Right(and on the part about the dancing i think it was definitely Both Meanings..

  • Dear Washington Post, go buy a microphone. Now that it is convenient oral history is in, reading is out. Sincerely, 2010

  • Dude this is fake he would never kill people in church and don’t make up that dumb shit in that picture it don’t even look like that

  • What about the pale horse and the masked guy

  • shut up

  • A chillin look lol. This shit is over rated

  • The girl sitting on the car at the end depicting beauty amongst model cars. A stand out symbol that America lost its elegance along the way through the ages.

  • Guess what I don't care about all of this 😄

  • This is is for black people how they didn’t get there way when Dr.king was alive

  • Yes cuz we are intrested about the meaning of the song not the giant meme potential in this

  • I DONT CARE THIS VIDEO WEIRD ASFFFFFFF. Wackkkkkk

  • You forgot the writings on his arm

  • Not a fan of this song but I like the analysis.

  • Go Fk Yourself Childish Gambino! This is a biggest piece of shit music I've ever heard. I understand the meaning behind it, the message he's trying to get across.......but he just did it in a disturbing way. His topless (ugly body) dance through out the music video was also disgusting & disturbing. IT IS NOT ART. This is not a masterpiece of a music video. Seriously, you got other black singers that sends message across throughout their music and they did it with style & subtle. And Didn't Get 360k Dislikes. Because of this Song & Music Video; I hate Childish Gambino from now on. He wana be so righteous but he adds a name to himself after a notorious Mafia's family name. 360,000 dislikes on his official video = Is Shit

  • Shouldn't everyone know by now that all these meanings is for what is happening in America rn in 2018

  • You guys forgot to mention how the thumbnail for This Is America is Gambino doing the Akuma pose from StreetFighter this symbolizes how America has forgotten their horrors against Japan and has turned their back on them, so to speak.

  • The shootings also show how guns are cared more than black people in america if you notice everyone that got shot was black and they were simply left there and the gun was treated better than the black people.

  • That Jim Crow stuff scares me no lie

  • 17 seconds?

  • What about the guy throwing himself from the railings at 2:15 in the original video... or the apocalypse rider at 2:36 ?