childish gambino this is america

Donald Glover/YouTube

‘This Is America’ is the protest anthem of choice on TikTok

Childish Gambino and Kendrick Lamar are back on the charts as their songs soundtrack protests.


Audra Schroeder

Internet Culture

Posted on Jun 4, 2020   Updated on Jan 27, 2021, 5:17 am CST

Childish Gambino’s 2018 song “This Is America” is seeing a bump on TikTok, and the charts, in the wake of countrywide protests.

The song—and more specifically the video, which has more than 674 million views—addresses police brutality and racial unrest, and it’s being used to soundtrack TikToks documenting the current unrest across America. Know Your Meme points out that a remix of the song, bookended with Post Malone’s “Congratulations,” started circulating in April but picked up in early May—when the murder of Ahmaud Arbery was finally being investigated.

But as protests picked up in late May, following the police killing of George Floyd, it was used in more on-the-ground videos.

It has also been used in tone-deaf videos, like the Austrian teen who did half-blackface, and later apologized after backlash, or the young man who implied Trump supporters are being oppressed or censored.

The audio’s been used in more than 425,000 videos, though snippets of the original song are also circulating. “This Is America” charted on Spotify again this week, along with Kendrick Lamar’s 2015 single “Alright.”

this is america chart data
Chart Data/Twitter


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*First Published: Jun 4, 2020, 3:30 pm CDT