2013 VMA Nominees For Best Video With A Message Challenge Society To Rethink Tough Issues [GIFS]

Photos: (Ryan Lewis, Sony Music, Columbia Records, Noisey, RCA Records)

Photos: (Ryan Lewis, Sony Music, Columbia Records, Noisey, RCA Records)

Brooklyn better be ready for some boundary-breaking, change-making, hella inspiring music videos, because the Best Video With a Social Message category is back for the third consecutive year at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards! Beyoncé, Kelly Clarkson, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Miguel and Snoop Lion are up for this year’s prize.

On August 25, the winner will join previous honorees Lady Gaga (“Born This Way”) and Demi Lovato (“Skyscraper”) and walk away with a freshly shined, redesigned Moonman by KAWS. The 2013 nominees feature five very distinct social messages and artists, but one thing’s for certain: All five weren’t afraid to go there. Yes, THEY ALL WENT THERE. They addressed tough issues in captivating pieces that not only made audiences think, but, in many cases, also encouraged them to act.

Snoop Lion took a strong stance on gun violence in “No Guns Allowed,” before teaming up with MTV x Caliber for a line of bracelets made from illegal guns taken off the streets. Sales of the bracelets fund future buyback programs. Kelly Clarkson got fed up with society’s overanalyzation of misfits, and took it upon herself to free a victim in her video for “People Like Us.” And with that, Kelly earns a second, back-to-back nomination in the category — she was nominated for “Dark Side” in 2012. Beyoncé took over the United Nations General Assembly hall to rally people worldwide to share more than 1 billion messages of hope via her video for “I Was Here.” Macklemore took a break from thrift shops to get very serious about hate and oppression and oh-so-eloquently making a case for marriage equality in “Same Love.” Miguel’s nominated clip for “Candles in the Sun” challenges us to have each other’s backs as we — as a whole, as one world — face poverty, drugs, discrimination, homelessness, corporate greed, religion, guns, war, the environment … I could go on and on as he does, but check it out for yourself, because, for the first time ever, a video in which Miguel keeps his shirt on is a must-see.

Below you can watch all the nominees, vote for your favorite, learn more about the issues, then go out and singlehandedly change the world. After all, NO SLEEP TILL BROOKLYN on 8/25 … so you’ve got time.

The 2013 Best Video With a Social Message nominees are…

+ Beyoncé, “I Was Here” (Vote | Take Action)

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+ Kelly Clarkson, “People Like Us” (Vote | Take Action)

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+ Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, “Same Love” (feat. Mary Lambert) (Vote | Take Action)

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+ Miguel, “Candles in the Sun” (Vote | Take Action)

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+ Snoop Lion, “No Guns Allowed (feat. Cori B. & Drake) (Vote | Take Action)

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Don’t miss the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, August 25th, live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and vote for your favorite Best Video With a Social Message by Monday, August 12th!

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