Demi Lovato delivered a passionate, heartfelt performance of her single “Commander in Chief” at the Billboard Music Awards telecast on Wednesday night.
The lyrics to the song, which I believe are most pertinent, are:
“If I did the things you do
I couldn’t sleep, seriously
Do you even know the truth?
We’re in a state of crisis; people are dyin’
While you line your pockets deep
Commander in Chief,
how does it feel to be able to breathe?”
There’s obviously a lot to unpack there.
The music video includes deaf and hard of hearing people, Indigenous people, Black children, Muslims, and just about every group who has been hated on so fervently for the last four years, taking turns singing the lines.
The final couplet is definitely the most poignant:
“How does it feel to be able to breathe?
This shout-out to current protests and the anthem of Black Lives Matter is hard to miss.
And even though Twitter is burning up with divisive comments accusing Lovato of grandstanding, the haters might be missing the point. Plus, Lovato has “skin in the game”—she’s Hispanic and openly gay.
I think, as a young performer, it might be difficult to live through things like that and not want to see the hatred, the toxicity, and the bitterness go away. It might even saturate into your artistic output.
Whether it was a good move for her career or not, didn’t have any effect on her:
“I literally don’t care if this ruins my career,” she posted on Instagram.
“This isn’t about that. My career isn’t about that. I made a piece of art that stands for something I believe in. And I’m putting it out even at the risk of losing fans. I’ll take integrity in my work over sales any day.” ~ Demi Lovato
Watch the BBMA performance here:
And the music video version: