Jesse Williams Working To Solve America’s Racial And Social Justice Problems

Jesse Williams explores inequalities in American education in the upcoming documentary series America Divided, according to Time magazine. And there is an exclusive new clip from the upcoming EPIX documentary series produced by Jesse Williams, Shonda Rhimes, and a few others.

Jesse Williams is a Shondaland alum, and this time, he sits in the producer chair alongside Rhimes herself to talk about the U.S. school system’s student achievement gap, students’ Miranda Rights and other growing problems in the country’s schools.

An interesting fact about Jesse Williams is that he used to work as a teacher before his acting career started blossoming with his role of Dr. Jackson Avery on Rhimes’ doctor drama Grey’s Anatomy.

And now Jesse Williams returns to the classroom at St. Petersburg, Florida, to take a detailed look at the modern problems of schools. In the exclusive clip, Williams is seen talking to a public defender about minors in the criminal justice system who are being pushed to waive their Miranda Rights.

And while many minors and adults don’t know what it means to waive your Miranda Rights, Jesse Williams, who turned 35-years-old earlier this month, explains what it’s like when a police officer is asking teenagers to waive their rights, which most often happens when parents aren’t in the room.

America Divided, co-produced by Jesse Williams, Shonda Rhimes, Norman Lear, and Common, will be comprised of five episodes that will take an in-depth look at America’s criminal justice, education, healthcare, labor, and politics and how they intertwine.

Apart from Jesse Williams and the above-mentioned interviewees, such stars as Rosario Dawson and Peter Sarsgaard will also be included in the discussion of the country’s pressing problems.

America Divided is not the only project Common and Jesse Williams are currently working on together, according to Billboard. The hip-hop artist and the Grey’s Anatomy actor will headline the upcoming Many Rivers to Cross music and arts festival.

Jesse Williams and Common will join singer John Legend, comedian Chris Rock, Mexican musician Carlos Santana, and South African-American singer Dave Matthews to participate in the two-day event dedicated to racial and social justice.

The festival is scheduled to be held outside of Atlanta in Chattahoochee Hills, Georgia, from October 1 through October 2 and is organized by Sankofa.org, which was founded by Harry Belafonte.

However, Jesse Williams, Rock, Legend, and Common are not the only world-famous stars to grace the stage of the Many Rivers to Cross festival this fall. Such celebs as hip-hop band Public Enemy, British singer Estelle, Lethal Weapon actor Danny Glover, civil rights activist Michelle Alexander, and Dr. Cornel West are also set to participate in the two-day festival.

More arts and music artists to headline the event will be announced by the end of summer. Apart from performances by artists such as John Legend and Jesse Williams, organizers will set up a Social Justice Village to talk about racial and social justice problems of the U.S. and share ideas on how to fix human rights issues.

In his press release announcing the participation of Legend, Common, and Jesse Williams, founder Belafonte said the festival will be an opportunity for the artists to mobilize audiences around the country’s human rights, racial, and social justice problems through their music and to prompt America to take progressive action.

“It will also provide a crucial space for these artists to connect and collaborate with activists, thought leaders and community organizers from across the country and use their platforms to amplify ideas and solutions to advance human rights for all.”

Belafonte has been interested in attracting celebs like Jesse Williams, Legend, and Usher to discuss the country’s issues ever since he founded Sankofa.org in 2013. His organization has recently collaborated with Usher on his “Chains” music video as well as a racial justice campaign.

[Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP Images]