Idris Elba has called on perpetrators of knife crime to stop making their communities “look stupid” and urged other stars to demand an end to fatal stabbings.
The actor has said that those tempted to stab another person should instead turn the blade on themselves “because you’re stabbing your future”.
Knife crime has risen rapidly in Elba’s native London in recent years, resulting in the deaths of scores of young men across the capital.
Elba has called for an end to stabbings in order to spare the largely black victims of violence, and asked that other entertainers spread a message of peace for the UK’s streets to end the cycle of knife crime.
In a video posted on Instagram, the Luther star said that knife-related violence makes communities “look stupid” and called for young men to think of their future.
He said: “Knife crime is not new. I grew up in the Eighties and there was knife crime back then, between blacks and whites.
“And now it’s definitely between young black men in small, tiny communities. And it’s affecting everyone, we all look stupid.
“You look even more stupid, if you’ve got a knife, or you know someone that’s got a knife, tell them to stab themselves right now, trust me. Because you’re just going to stab your future if you go and stab someone else.
“You become a murderer, you go to prison, you ain’t got shit. For what? For some beef that lives within your community. You need to see past that.”
After Elba’s direct appeal to the often young men who become embroiled in knife violence, and end up the victims of it, he asked his fellow stars to join him in an appeal to persuade people to put down their blades.
He said: “We have to say something about it as well, entertainers that are out there, there’s young people that look up to us, man, we need to just vocalise this. Send a message out saying put the knives down. It’s dumb. It’s dumb.
“We don’t need to be killing ourselves. We have so much more we can offer. And you’re going to kill your future, you’re going to kill someone else’s future, and it’s dumb.
“Entertainers, do me a favour man, put out similar videos, let’s try and put out something and say that we care for our communities. Stop the knife crime, please.”
The star also posted a number of statistics alongside his impassioned plea for action, including a figure claiming there were more than 14,000 knife-related offences in London alone in 2017/18.