Vic Mensa dreams of a better world – without racial, religious or political barriers – in his poignant video for "We Could Be Free," featuring Ty Dolla $ign.
The clip opens with a baby in the womb and zooms out to reveal his mother at a heated protest. A police officer punches the woman in the face, and that act of cruelty changes the boy's life. Years later, a cop guns down the teenager and the character's mother cradles his lifeless body as she cries.
Mensa detailed his artistic vision for the visual in an interview with Beats 1 host Zane Lowe. "I'm taking this journey, taking you through these different experiences of growing up on the south side – kinda showing you how these peaks and valleys come around to a place of realization that freedom is possible," he said. "At this point in time in the world globally, there's a lot of division based on a lot of fear, and I wanted to present an alternative that was without fear – something that was more based in humanity."
The rapper described the foreshadowing of the opening scene with the unborn child. "[It's] a safe space, you would think," he says. "But you're hearing the turmoil outside and seeing how that affects an infant in the womb." He also talked about the video's use of religious imagery. "You have religion as a main source of division between people," he said. "I don't think at its core that's what religion is meant to be, but we juxtaposed those things in the video to show that it doesn't have to be that way."