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Yandy Smith activism

Source: Paras Griffin/Getty Images for ESSENCE / Getty

The trouble with being a reality star is that when you make an effort to prove that you’re more than just that, there will be people who assume it’s all for attention.

Yandy Smith has been dealing with those types of people ever since she’s become an outspoken activist in the push for criminal justice reform. During the latest season of Love and Hip Hop New York, the star was seen protesting such issues. However, she was doing so before the cameras started rolling, using her platform to bring attention to injustices ranging from prisoners being held in facilities that are in poor, dangerous conditions, to her current fight to get the officers who killed Breonna Taylor arrested.

The latter effort, which she’s teamed up with Tamika D. Mallory’s Until Freedom to help see through, have landed Smith, along with fellow reality TV star-turned-activist Porsha Williams, behind bars. They were among a number of people who were arrested during a demonstration in Louisville as part of BreonnaCon, an event meant to demand justice for Taylor. Smith shared her arrest on her Instagram page earlier this week.

Being apprehended for peaceful protest didn’t bother Smith though, who captioned her arrest video “If we don’t get no justice.”

“Martin Luther King Arrested 29 times refused bail several times. John Lewis arrested 45 times. Rosa Parks 2 times. All rewrote history. I’m trying to rewrite Herstory,” she wrote on Thursday about her work. “In times of civil unrest, and disrespect to my culture and my people I will act in the steps of the heros and sheros before me. I want my children to read about how their mother stood up in the face of injustice. While you judge, criticize, poke fun just know I have your babies in mind too. All is love. God bless. @untilfreedom I love you all so much for waiting for us for hours on the outside and most keeping us real calm on the inside.”

But what did bother her were people who asked if her efforts were for “clout.”

When a young woman posed that question on her page, Smith didn’t hold back.

“you so d*mn ignorant,” she wrote in response. “YOU THINK I WOULD LEAVE MY CHILDREN AND MY HUSBAND TO PROTEST FOR A WOMAN, A BLACK WOMAN THAT WAS MURDERED IN HER SLEEP, FOR CLOUT?????? So you’re admitting you think BLACK WOMEN HAVE NO VALUE?!! So Breonna’s life isn’t enough for me to want to hold the officers accountable…I must just want clout, right? You sound so SILLY. Dafuq is clout anyway?!!!! You follow me and I don’t know you. That’s clout enough sis.”

Smith has definitely been very serious in her actions, as we’ve seen her pepper sprayed and arrested on more than one occasion. She hasn’t been deterred by any of it, and it seems she certainly won’t be deterred by the comments of detractors. As she has stated before, “When one goes. The blood is on all of us. We gotta fight!!!!!”

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