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"We should be together as one. We should enjoy life but also cut the violence. A lot of violence is going on and it's going on within us as a community. But if we get 'us' together then we can fight the other things to come."

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Afropunk Festival Revelers Talk Politics

Amid blaring music, dancing crowds and parading fashionistas, Afropunkers share insights on the current state of Black America.

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Visual artist Sophia Dawson writes a tribute to those killed by police officers during the 2016 AfroPunk Music Festival at Commodore Barry Park.

The event is a yearly celebration of Afrocentrism, multicultural otherness and experimentation that has closed out the summer months in Brooklyn, N.Y. for the past 11 years. Afropunk has become a palpable force in its own right and is considered the forefront of African-American creativity. The statements featured below are a few opinions on the current state of Black America.

Visual artist Sophia Dawson writes a tribute to those killed by police officers during the 2016 AfroPunk Music Festival at Commodore Barry Park. The event is a yearly celebration of Afrocentrism, multicultural otherness and experimentation that has closed out the summer months in Brooklyn, N.Y. for the past 11 years. Afropunk has become a palpable force in its own right and is considered the forefront of African-American creativity. The statements featured below are a few opinions on the current state of Black America.
Elias Williams
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Laura Walton, left: "We're going through a lot of changes that should've taken place a long time ago... Afropunk gives us an opportunity to talk about it face to face, rather than on social media, which a lot of people say hides the true leaders of the movement. And I feel like the actual leaders of the movement are at festivals like this." 
Daria Harper, right: "I think we could use a little more unity as far as moving forward politically and economically... I feel we're a little bit too divided to make the proper moves we need in order to really reach a point of stability."

Laura Walton, left: "We're going through a lot of changes that should've taken place a long time ago... Afropunk gives us an opportunity to talk about it face to face, rather than on social media, which a lot of people say hides the true leaders of the movement. And I feel like the actual leaders of the movement are at festivals like this."

Daria Harper, right: "I think we could use a little more unity as far as moving forward politically and economically... I feel we're a little bit too divided to make the proper moves we need in order to really reach a point of stability."

Elias Williams / for NBC News
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"I think there have been improvements and there's also been some setbacks. But I think we're on the right path. I think we're still staying strong. We're gonna keep it going. This [Afropunk festival] is a good representation of how young black people are getting together. This next generation is not gonna stand for anymore bull."

"I think there have been improvements and there's also been some setbacks. But I think we're on the right path. We're still staying strong. We're gonna keep it going. This [Afropunk festival] is a good representation of how young black people are getting together. This next generation is not gonna stand for anymore bull."

-Idris Muhammed, Brooklyn, NY

Elias Williams
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"We should be together as one. We should enjoy life but also cut the violence. A lot of violence is going on and it's going on within us as a community. But if we get 'us' together then we can fight the other things to come."

"We should be together as one. We should enjoy life, but also cut the violence. A lot of violence is going on and it's going on within us as a community. But if we get 'us' together then we can fight the other things to come."

-Langston Hawkins, Washington, D.C.

Elias Williams
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Elijah Pryor, Queens, New York
"We have a renaissance going on right now. The current state of the black community is in 'artist mode.' I've seen so many artists come up out of this. When there's a lot of crazy things going on. It's all about shifting it into a positive thing."

"We have a renaissance going on right now. The current state of the black community is 'artist mode.' I've seen so many artists come up out of this. When there's a lot of crazy things going on... It's all about shifting it into a positive thing."

-Elijah Pryor, Queens, New York 

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Agnes, Prince George's County, Maryland
"I'm scared. It feels like they're just killing us everyday. It's very scary to know you're being targeted." 
"Afropunk, I love it. Once a year I get a chance to express myself. Within these two days I can really be myself and just feel free."

"I'm scared. It feels like they're just killing us everyday. It's very scary to know you're being targeted... Afropunk, I love it. Once a year I get a chance to express myself. Within these two days I can really be myself and just feel free."

-Agnes, Prince George's County, Maryland 

Elias Williams
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"We have a lot of problems right now with the police. There's need for a change now more than ever."

"We have a lot of problems right now with the police. There's need for a change now more than ever."

-Paperboy Prince, Brooklyn, N.Y.

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Goyo from Choc??, Colombia

"Afropunk is culture, fashion and it's powerful."

-Goyo, Colombia 

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"I think we're in a period of awakening. The current threay upon our culture and our lives is only strengthening us."

"I think we're in a period of awakening. The current threat upon our culture and our lives is only strengthening us."

-David J., Austin, Texas

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A festival attendee dances to the music at the Afropunk Festival in Brooklyn, NY.

A festival attendee dances to the music at the Afropunk Festival in Brooklyn, NY.

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