Queen Latifah and Tupac Shakur are both musical celebrities. Celebrities can be role models and issue-raisers, and both artists acted as such. Queen Latifah acted as a role model to women by describing how she empowered herself during instances of gendered violence and harassment. Although Queen Latifah talked about gender issues in her songs, she also described symptoms of institutional racism. Latifah talked about issues in black urban communities, such as Newark, where she as born. These issues included violence, drug use, income inequality, and housing. Latifah suggested black pride and black unity as a way to fix these problems. The reason why violence was so prevalent in the black urban community inthe 1980s and 1990s was because of practices that perpetuated income inequality between races, something that may not be immediately clear to a white listener or those that see black people as inherently violent. Shakur acted as a role model to young black males, adopting the thug persona to better connect with them. Shakur also acknowledged many instances of institutionalized racism, including police harassment and the systemic omission of black Americans from American history. Shakur threatened violence against others, but also described how the constant death and violence around him made him feel paranoid and suicidal. Mental health is a taboo topic in the black community, and his lyrics about his thoughts helped to erase the negative connotations associated with suicidal thoughts and mental illness. Shakur appeared to be an ally to women in many of his songs, yet he frequently acted in misogynistic ways as well. Both Queen Latifah and Tupac Shakur highlighted what institutionalized racism looked like on an everyday basis, spitting truths that others outside of the black community could hear.