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“Being called the voice of a generation is complicated,” says Yara Shahidi, the twenty year-old multi-hyphenate who has earned that powerful title as much for her pioneering work as a Gen Z activist as she has for her performances on the acclaimed sitcoms Black-ish and Grown-ish.
Shahidi is relentless in her commitment to confront what she believes are the most critical social and political issues of the day. From getting out the youth vote through her 18xEighteen initiative to elevating diverse identities onscreen and off, she’s leveraging her Hollywood platform to meet the moment, using her voice to help others access their own. She also refuses to let her generation be discounted and calls for her peers to claim their rightful power as agents of change.“In big and small ways, people are paying attention to today’s social climate, because regardless of who you are, it’s affecting you one way or another,” she says. “It isn’t a matter of saying, ‘This is why you should care.’ There’s so much happening that you can’t not care.”
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