In his hometown of Chicago, Kanye West has officially joined up with protests against police violence, various outlets are reporting. He's also put his money where his mouth is, by pledging $2 million to the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, as well as setting up a 529 college savings fund for Floyd's daughter Gianna, who is now just six years old.
Black owned businesses in Chicago and around the country are also getting financial support from West according to a spokesperson through TMZ, in addition to the $2 million pledge.
Arbery was killed by police in Georgia while Taylor was killed in Louisville, Kentucky, and the bulk of West's $2 million is intended to go towards their family's legal fees in their impending court battle with the police departments involved, so West's donation is in keeping with the nationwide scope of these protests.
Normally, of course, in cases like this, attorneys for the families work on a contingency basis, taking their fees as a percentage from any money awarded to their clients. Lonita Baker is a lawyer in Louisville representing Taylor's family, and she told USA Today West specifically requested for his donation to prevent that cut from being necessary:
"Typically, the costs would be deducted from any recovery that the family may receive at the conclusion of the case…Kanye wanted to ensure that the family would not have to bear the brunt of those costs."
West is one of many celebrities to have taken part in various protests of police violence throughout the country, and he's not even the only one in his household to make a financial pledge to the cause. Kim Kardashian recently took to Twitter to ask for help identifying a woman named Shannyn Sharyse Nara who was photographed after being injured by a rubber bullet at a protest, asking her followers for help contacting Nara so she could help cover her medical bills if necessary.