Actor Idris Elba has joined a campaign to reduce knife-related crime in Britain.
The Luther star has urged his fellow celebrities to speak up in an effort to end a trend of fatal stabbings in the U.K.
Elba notes knife crime is on rise throughout his native London, resulting in a string of deaths to black youths, and he wants it to end.
In a video posted on Instagram, the star claims the violence makes communities “look stupid”.
“Knife crime is not new,” he says. “I grew up in the 80s and there was knife crime back then, between blacks and whites. And now it’s definitely between young black men in small, tiny communities. And it’s affecting everyone, we all look stupid.
“You look even more stupid if you’ve got a knife or you know someone that’s got a knife… Tell them to stab themselves right now, trust me. Because you’re just going to stab your future if you go and stab someone else. You become a murderer, you go to prison, you ain’t got s**t. For what? For some beef that lives within your community. You need to see past that.”
Turning to his peers, Idris adds, “We have to say something about it as well. Entertainers that are out there, there’s young people that look up to us, man, we need to just vocalise this. Send a message out saying, ‘Put the knives down. It’s dumb’.
“Entertainers, do me a favour, man. Put out similar videos (and) let’s try and put out something and say that we care for our communities. Stop the knife crime, please.”
The actor then revealed the staggering statistic there were more than 14,000 knife-related offences in London in 2017 and 2018.
Former One Direction singer Liam Payne is also spearheading the anti-knife campaign, revealing there were 99 stabbings in the Birmingham area, near where he grew up, over an eight week period.
The singer, who was born in Wolverhampton, shared his own experience with knife-related violence in an effort to hammer home the terror of being robbed by a blade-carrying thug.
In a Twitter conversation with the Birmingham Mail newspaper, he said, “I was held at knifepoint by a man in Bilston when I was 12 and me and my friend were robbed. Luckily that was all that happened and me and my friend walked away with our lives not everyone is so lucky.”
The 25 year old admitted he’s horrified by the numbers of people being killed as a result of knife crime in the U.K., adding, “Having a knife in your pocket doesn’t make you any more of a person. It makes you a risk. Put it down and don’t become a statistic. Find your power in other things that make you become more and greater than you ever thought you could be.”