Jay-Z Pledges Support For #MeToo Movement: 'This Had To Happen To Purge Itself'

The musician and mogul appeared on CNN this weekend.

As Hollywood continues to move forward from a months-long movement to call out sexual harassment and assault in the film industry, during an appearance on CNN, musician and mogul Jay-Z joined the numerous celebrities who have voiced their support for the #MeToo movement. Appearing on The Van Jones Show Saturday, Jay-Z touched on current political issues (which drew headlines later after a response by Donald Trump on Twitter) and his personal life in an exchange that drew on the artist's recent move to being a more outspoken advocate. 

Comparing the rampant sexism in the industry to racism, the "4:44" rapper called the #MeToo movement a realization of the "normalization of the things we have to do to survive." 

"I believe everything happens for a reason," he said. "Everything is a learning experience — the good, bad, and ugly. You know, this had to happen to purge itself."

During his appearance, the Grammy-nominated artist also once again voiced his support for Colin Kaepernick and the #TakeAKnee campaign.

"Would you rather be playing football, getting your head dinged in, or would you rather be an iconic figure for the rest of your life?" he said on the show. "We confuse the idea of having a job with fulfilling your purpose."

In the past year, Jay-Z has become an advocate for many social issues, but especially criminal justice reform. After Meek Mill, a rapper who is represented by Jay-Z's Roc Nation, was sentenced to two-to-four years in prison for parole violations, Jay-Z published a powerful op-ed in the New York Times on the effects the current prison system has on the Black community as a whole.

"We could literally shut down jails if we treated people on parole or probation more fairly," Jay-Z wrote. "And that's what we need to fight for in Philadelphia and across the country. Probation is a trap and we must fight for Meek and everyone else unjustly sent to prison."

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