British actor Riz Ahmed’s rap about identity and belonging went viral as social media users drew comparisons between the questions it posed and racist comments made by a royal aide at Buckingham Palace this week.
“Do they ever ask you, ‘Where you from?’ Like but, ‘Where you really from?’,” the actor and rapper sings, capturing an experience shared by many people of color born in the U.K.
“Britain’s where I’m born, and I love a cup of tea and that. But tea ain’t from Britain, it’s from where my DNA is at,” go some of the later lyrics.
The song was featured in Ahmed’s Oscar-award winning short film and album “The Long Goodbye,” an artistic exploration of the U.K’s relationship with British Asians and the rise of the far-right in the country after Brexit.
“My tribe is a quest to a land that was lost to us. And its name is dignity, so where I’m from is not your problem, bruv,” he sings.
Ahmed’s rap, which was released three years ago, re-emerged on social media after Ngozi Fulani, a Black British charity boss, wrote on Twitter that Prince William’s godmother, Lady Susan Hussey, had repeatedly asked her where she was “really” from during a royal reception at Buckingham Palace.
“But where do you really come from, where do your people come from?” Hussey asked Fulani at the event on Tuesday. Fulani, a guest at the reception representing a domestic violence charity, called the questioning “abuse.”
Hussey, who was the late Queen Elizabeth II’s lady-in-waiting, has since resigned from royal duties. The palace has said her remarks were “unacceptable and deeply regrettable.”