“A million hands can build a wall, a million hands can bring it down.”
Two dozen of the biggest names in music — including Jennifer Lopez, Prince Royce And Selena Gomez — have come together to pay tribute to the victims of the Orlando massacre in a song titled “Hands.” The song speaks about the power each individual holds — the power to build or to destroy. The song, which was created with support from GLAAD, also features vocals by Britney Spears, Gwen Stefani, Jason Derulo, Meghan Trainor, Juanes, Pink and Mary J. Blige.
GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis told Billboard it’s important to drive out the hate and ignorance that led to the attacks. “When you hear the song it talks about hate being the driver here, and that’s important because we have to be able to identify what’s driving these cruel acts in order to stop them. Artists using their platforms to accelerate acceptance is very powerful,” said Ellis.
As beaches, restaurants, and even bars and clubs started to reopen, it was easy to forget that we are still in the midst of a global health crisis – one that continues to hit the Latino community, in particular, very hard. And stars, they really are just like us. Celebrities are also at risk of contracting Covid-19 and over the last few days we’ve learned that several of Latin music’s biggest stars have in fact been infected with the virus.
The news comes just as states like Florida, California, Arizona, and Texas set new records with sky high infection rates. It’s an important reminder that nobody is immune to this pandemic and that we all need to do our part to keep our communities safe.
Several major Latin music stars have recently announced they’ve tested positive for Covid-19.
As if a reminder that stars, they’re just like us, several of Latin music’s biggest celebrities have announced that they’ve tested positive for Covid-19. Karol G, Prince Royce, and Chiquita Rivera have all shared their positive diagnosis for the virus and are urging fans to stay home and use masks when they have to go out.
Karol G took to Instagram Live to share the news of her infection with her fans.
During an Instagram live watched by more than 100,000, the “Tusa” singer said that she tested positive two or three weeks ago but had not made it public so her parents wouldn’t worry. “First of all, thank you to all the people that have reached out to me. I hadn’t said anything because my parents are far away and I didn’t want them to worry about me,” she says.
“Because my new single was coming out, I didn’t want coronavirus to be the news. Now that the news is out, my parents are very nervous and if it was under any other circumstance, they’d be here by my side.”
Karol G went on to say that she is feeling well compared to others who have been diagnosed positive. She was diagnosed with COVID-19 a few weeks ago with her friend and sister, and decided to isolate away from Anuel, who she confirmed tested negative. “I feel well. Today, I got another test and hoping this one will be negative.”
Chiquita Rivera also announced that her and her husband have also tested positive for the virus.
Just last week, Mexican-American singer Chiquis Rivera, the daughter of the late Jenni Rivera, revealed she and her husband Lorenzo Méndez tested positive for COVID-19. Also in an Instagram video, Rivera said “We’re contagious so we have to be responsible and we are going to quarantine.”
And Dominican Prince Royce announced he too had contracted Covid-19.
Prince Royce was one of the first celebrities to reveal his diagnosis. he shared he had tested positive for the virus shortly before the 4th of July holiday weekend and urged people to take precautions and be safe – for themselves and others.
In an Instagram video, he shared that he had gone out to restaurants since things had started to open up. He added: “Well, Florida hasn’t been so bad, and New York is the one with the problem. I fell for that and I think many people can fall for that and will fall for that. Don’t be selfish and make the same mistakes that I probably did.”
He urged his fans to do the responsible thing and stay at home.
“I was diagnosed with COVID-19 and I am on day number 12 since my symptoms began,” he wrote on Instagram. “My case has been mild and I am feeling well. I share this with you today to ask you please not let down your guard — this virus is very real and we can have it and spread it without even knowing. I didn’t think I had it as I didn’t feel that bad and had I not gotten tested I would be spreading it to others.”
His caption also added, “For younger people, this is more than just about taking care of ourselves, it is about taking care of others, older people and those with compromised immune systems. Please let’s take this seriously and act responsibly and with compassion. Let’s all take care of each other.”
Their infections come as the virus is raging out of control across the country.
New records are being set everyday across the United States, as severe all states see the virus rage out of control. For the first time ever in the U.S., Florida saw more than 15,000 new cases in just one day. Meanwhile, in Arizona – the per capita infection rate is higher than it was at the peak of New York’s battle against the virus.
As of July 15, the U.S. has 3.48 million confirmed cases and almost 140,000 deaths due to Covid-19 infection. Those numbers are expected to continue to climb as many Americans refuse to follow simple preventive measures, including wearing a mask and staying at home.
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It is graduation season and Covid-19 has changed how we conduct graduation ceremonies. This year, few high school seniors will be able to walk across the stage as states and counties protect their health and offer graduation alternatives. Celebrities have stepped up to give these seniors special commencement speeches.
Selena Gomez wanted to give immigrads a special commencement speech honoring their experience.
“Congratulations to all of the Immigrads,” Gomez says int he video. “I know that this is a virtual ceremony, but it is very real and it is very real to all of the families, and all of you, and your communities. I want you guys to know that you matter and that your experiences are a huge part of the American story.”
Gomez used her speech to connect with the immigrant graduates by relating to their stories.
“When my family came here from Mexico, they set into motion my American story, as well as theirs,” Gomez says. “I’m a proud third-generation American-Mexican, and my family’s journey and their sacrifices helped me get me to where I am today. Mine is not a unique story. Each and every one of you have a similar tale of becoming an American.”
Gomez gave her address for Define American, an immigrant-led organization.
Define American “is a narrative and culture change organization that uses media and the power of storytelling to transcend politics and shift the conversation about immigrants, identity, and citizenship in a changing America,” reads the website.
Gomez fans are here to support the singer and her speech.
Gomez has used her platform to confront major topics in American politics and society. She produced “13 Reasons Why” to enter the conversation about teenage suicide and has used her social media platform to celebrate undocumented immigrants chasing the American Dream.
Gomez ended her speech giving all of the immigrads some words of encouragement.
“So, regardless of where your family is from, regardless of your immigration status, you have taken action to earn an education, to make your families proud, and to open up your worlds,” Gomez says. “So, I’m sending all of my love to you guys today, and congratulations, and I hope that you guys are set off to be everything that you want to be.”