Instead of subjecting the world to an artsy clip of herself pondering over the existence of systemic racism, Selena Gomez used her Instagram as a teaching tool this weekend, giving it over to civil rights icon Ruby Bridges.
At age six, Bridges was the first black child to desegregate an all-white school in Louisiana in 1960, and her story—along with images of her walking down the school steps flanked by large white U.S. Marshals in suits—is one of the defining moments of the Civil Rights Movement. Of course, as much as things change, they still stay the same.
Bridges shared clips from The Children Were Watching, a documentary about her experience starting the first grade at William Frantz Elementary in New Orleans in 1960 and the fight for school integration, as well as images from Voting Rights Act protests and a link to register to vote. “I want you to remember that it is all of our shared history. This is your legacy too,” she said in a video introducing the documentary clips.
Gomez, who has 180 million Twitter followers, has done a pretty admirable job of educating her fanbase on Black history and activism without resorting to feigned shock at the continued existence of racism. In addition to Bridges, Gomez has handed her Instagram over to Black transgender rights activist Raquel Willis, theory of intersectionality creator Professor Kimberlé Crenshaw, Killer Mike, and Professor Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Anti-Racist, to name a few. Aaron Paul, take note.