Yasiin Bey (fka Mos Def) has never been shy about expressing his political side. In a video released today for the Guardian, the rapper/actor underwent a force-feeding to highlight the more than 100 detainees at Guantanamo Bay currently on hunger strike to protest their extended detentions without trial.
Why now? Today marks the first day of Ramadan, the month-long Islamic observance requiring Muslims to abstain from food and liquids from dawn until sunset. Select Guantanamo detainees have been force-fed twice a day and Islamic leaders have asked Barack Obama to change its policy to prevent the practice from happening during these hours.
In the graphic video, Bey is shackled and tied to a chair while workers insert a long tube into his nose and down his throat. His legs involuntarily buckle as he cries and cuts off the procedure. You're going to squirm. But that's the point.
"It felt like something was going into my brain," said the rapper afterwards. "I really couldn't take it."