Sure, he’s a looker. Yeah, he’s got charm and charisma and talent, all of which is off the charts in a great way. What really makes Riz Ahmed the most bae man of our times is just how woke he is to the real social injustices in the world. Ahmed is an activist as well as an actor, a man who doesn’t purport to be better than others simply because is he fighting for the rights and survival of others, but who is worthy of a hefty amount of praise. Ahmed uses his position as an actor and famous face for charitable causes, making him a truly noble figure.
Over the last year alone, Ahmed’s star has risen to much more prominent levels. Thanks to breakout roles in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and HBO’s limited series, The Night Before, Ahmed has become as in-demand an actor in the United States as he has been in his home country of England.
1. Attending the Women’s March in London
Ahmed has become an important ally for women all over the world, and true to form, practiced what he preached by showing up at the Women’s March in London in late January 2017. Ahmed was not only kind enough to pose with fellow marchers and fans, but he was out in the streets carrying signs and showing true colors as a feminist bae.
2. Giving a speech to Parliament on the necessity of diversity
In early March 2017, Ahmed gave an incredible speech to Parliament about the need for diversity and its ability to curb negative societal effects, like the youth becoming radicalized by ISIS. Diversity, Ahmed argued, provided a way for young audiences of color and of various sexual identities, gender identities, family structures, different abilities, walks of life and so forth to identify with the pop culture they love and embrace that over dangerous ideas propagated by fringe groups. Watch the full speech below to drink in the full effect of Ahmed’s argument.
3. Supporting Syrian refugees
For months now, Ahmed has been fundraising for Syrian refugees. Ahmed has teamed with fellow actors, like The Night Before co-star John Turturro, as well as working on his own to repeatedly raise funds and material goods to send along to Syrian refugees. He is so dedicated to the cause and there is no evidence that Ahmed will stop fighting to protect the rights and liberties of Syrian refugees.
4. Ahmed’s “Typecast as a Terrorist” was an eye-opener
In September 2016, Ahmed’s stunning Guardian essay, “Typecast as a Terrorist,” arguably tuned many of us into Ahmed’s political and activist feelings. Speaking about the ways in which his fame has intersected with his race, often to negative results while traveling internationally, Ahmed conveyed just how Islamophobia persists in the world today.
5. Ahmed tells followers on Instagram: “It’s Not ‘Us versus Them'”
In the wake of the London terror attack in mid-March 2017 and on Muslim Women’s Day, Ahmed took to Instagram to post a powerful and sobering picture of women, both Muslim and non-Muslim, united in a single line on Westminster Bridge. The location is meaningful because it is the location of the attack and the unity of women as a symbol of humanity resonates. This image reinforced by Ahmed’s strongly worded caption that there is no need for the rhetoric of “us vs. them” to persist in politics or the media.
6. He supports the #FreeAndyTsege campaign
Ahmed never misses the opportunity to raise awareness for various civil rights campaigns through his Twitter account. This dedication to ringing the alarm so that issues gain wider visibility is one of Ahmed’s most commendable qualities.
7. “Refugees Welcome”
Ahmed is not only a supporter of Syrian refugees, but he is in favor of keeping borders open and giving refugees a safe haven where possible. Photos like the one above are a consistent theme in Ahmed’s social media, commendable in any light.
Ahmed is still building momentum as an actor and an activist, but he is quickly becoming the greatest advocate for a variety of social issues we have right now.
Before you go, check out our slideshow below.