Kehlani Criticizes Peers for Requesting Features While Staying Silent on Palestine: 'What Are You Doing?' (UPDATE)

"It’s f*ck Israel, and it’s f*ck Zionism, and it’s also f*ck a lot of y’all, too," the "After Hours" artist said in a recent video.

Kehlani in a black strappy top and black pants with visible tattoos on her arms and hands, posing on a patterned backdrop at a music event
Image via Getty/Steven Simione / WireImage
Kehlani in a black strappy top and black pants with visible tattoos on her arms and hands, posing on a patterned backdrop at a music event

UPDATED 6/13, 7:17 a.m. ET: Kehlani says she has raised more than $555,000 through sales of merch for her "Next 2 U" single.

"Me and my team feel overwhelmed with gratitude for y’all showing out for this fundraiser," Kehlani told fans this week. "We’re blessed to say we supported artists in the West Bank while raising money for families in Gaza, Sudan, Congo. We’re blessed to say that we are supported by a community standing on business together. We’re blessed to play a small part in a growing tide towards the truth about Palestine."

Among those directly thanked in Kehlani’s update is the grassroots Operation Olive Branch movement, more info on which is available here.

The video for "Next 2 U," released last month, also saw the singer taking a firmly pro-Palestine stance. On the video's YouTube page, it's noted that all proceeds from merch for the single "will be distributed amongst Palestinian, Congolese, and Sudanese families through Operation Olive Branch."

View this video on YouTube

See original story below.

Kehlani says "any ounce of fucking respect" she had for some of her peers is now "gone" amid the ongoing unspeakable coverage of Israel’s war on Gaza.

In a recent video shared to Instagram, the "After Hours" singer criticized her peers’ inaction, noting that we are all living during a time that will go down "in history books" and be discussed "for the rest of fucking forever." She also called out artists who were communicating with her and/or asking about features while not taking a public stance.

"This is not small," Kehlani said, as seen below. "This is not light. This is not like a 'Damn, that’s crazy. Keep it pushing.' What are you doing? You guys watch my Stories and you like my posts and you interact with me and you text me and you reach out for features and you ask me to do this and this and this or whatever the fuck. Stop."

Speaking directly about the issue at hand, Kehlani added in another clip, "It’s fuck Israel, and it’s fuck Zionism, and it’s also fuck a lot of y’all, too." 

Her comments followed horrific images from Rafah coming out over the weekend, after Israel bombed Palestinians sleeping in tents in designated “safe zones,” burning displaced Gazans alive. The attack has launched the viral trend “All Eyes on Rafah.” 

Later on, Kehlani followed up after seeing someone in her comments arguing that many artists are stuck in contracts that make them "slaves to the labels" and prevent them from speaking out on this issue, in particular. 

"That does not exist. … It’s not a TV show," Kehlani said in response to that claim. "We have contractual obligations that have a lot to do with money and social media and shit like that but nowhere in the contract does it say, 'Well, in case a genocide was to occur, you are, in fact, not allowed to condemn it.'"

See more from Kehlani below.

a person who is literally IN the music industry is telling yall this bs narrative yall invented about sIave contracts that prevent celebrities from speaking up is all fake. she quite literally is telling y’all that they’re willingly staying silent. wake up. stop protecting them

— Tia⁷ ♡ Kookie (@babycuntycandy) May 28, 2024

kehlani clocking a whole lotta people rn

— VIЯGO (@thatzodiacvirgo) May 27, 2024


— moni⁷ (formerly batsmurdock)🧸 (@yoongisbatman) May 27, 2024

Fans of a variety of artists have been consistently vocal about wanting more from their favorites in terms of condemning the violence. Just this week, for example, the Swifties for Palestine hashtag was repeatedly made a trending topic on Twitter.

A variety of protests, from digital-focused to in-person demonstrations, have also been staged across the country in solidarity with Palestine. In February, an active-duty Air Force member died after a self-immolation protest in front of the Embassy of Israel in Washington, D.C.

While on fire, the 25-year-old airman, identified as Aaron Bushnell, shouted "Free Palestine!" repeatedly.

"I will no longer be complicit in genocide," he said moments earlier.

Latest in Music