“I always thought it as something that is still holding the country back…”
Jay-Z on Same-Sex Marriage, CNN
On Wednesday, May 9, President Obama took a defining stance on same-sex marriage with 10 words: “I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.”
Obama’s endorsement has gained some unlikely supporters. Several entertainers from the Hip- Hop and sports community have ‘come out’ to back the president’s decision, including Floyd Mayweather, Jay-Z, T.I., 50 Cent, Bun-B and dancehall reggae artist Beenie Man.
Boxing champ Floyd Mayweather took to Twitter express his support for the president and same-sex marriage.
“I stand behind President Obama & support gay marriage,” he tweeted. “I’m an American citizen & I believe people should live their life the way they want.”
Atlanta rapper T.I. gave his support to same-sex marriage during an interview with Sway on MTV News, saying, “I don’t care. I think if a matter doesn’t affect your daily life, you shouldn’t take a hard stand on it. If it’s not something that directly affects you.
If it doesn’t affect you then what difference does it make what other people are doing with their lives, he added.
Bun B released a personal vlog advocating same-sex marriage equality.
“I, myself, have no issue with it one way or the other, he said. “Whatever people want to do, it’s totally up to them. Because I don’t want anybody telling me what I can or cannot do. I think that you should do whatever you want to do.”
Rapper Jay-Z is perhaps the biggest artist with the most star power to back the president and his decision. The “N**gas in Paris” rapper even made a controversial statement likening the struggle of homosexuals to “discrimination against blacks.” Given the rapper’s homophobic lyrical content, it was even more questionable when the rapper stated same-sex marriage was always something he thought was holding America back.
“I always thought it as something that is still holding the country back, Jay-Z said in an interview with CNN. “What people do in their own homes is their business and choose to love whoever you love. That’s their business. It’s no different from discrimination against blacks,” he said. “It’s no different plain and simple.”
A look at Jay-Z’s past records indicates he’s not the gay rights advocate he proclaims to be.
On Jay-Z’s 1998 studio album release “Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life,” he raps “F**gots wanna talk to Po-Po’s, smoke em like cocoa” on the track “N**ga What N**ga Who.” Later in the song, he spits, “C’mon, f**got n**ga down to take the gun home.”
On “Lucky Me,” Jay-Z raps, “Hate a n**ga like that f**got, get your own,” which can be heard on his 1997 studio album release “Lucky Me.”
On his 2002 album “The Blue Print 2: The Gift and the Curse,” he raps, “ Why is you over here lookin’ at me while all these girls up in here? What you gay? N**ga Jay straight like Indian hair” on song “2 Many H*es.”
In the popular diss track “Take Over,” where he takes aim at rapper Nas, Jay-Z rapped, “You’s the f*g model for Karl Kani Esco ads.” In the same song, he makes another homophobic remark by alluding to Mob Deep’s Prodigy being a ballerina.
“When I was pushing weight, back in ’88 You was a ballerina, I got the pictures, I seen ya,” he raps. At a Summer Jam concert, Jay-Z ridiculed Prodigy after unveiling a picture of the rapper as a child wearing Michael Jackson styled clothing.
Other homophobic lyrics from Jay-Z’s discography include:
• “Too many f**got n**gaz, clockin my spending. Exercisin you’re, gay like minds like Richard Simmons” – “22 Two’s,” Reasonable Doubt.
• “And you know how come? His little f**got in the corner dialing 911”- “Gangsta Sh*t,” DJ Clues’ The Professional
• “ya heart pump project kool-aid(ya sweet) I aint gotta two-way you gays” – “Super Ugly,” The BluePrint 2: The Gift & The Curse
• “And since you infatuated with sayin tha gay shit, yes u was kissin my d*ck when u was kissin that bitch”- “Super Ugly,” The BluePrint 2: The Gift & The Curse
• “Now I ain’t down with who like me or who like you. That’s gay, I ain’t into liking dudes no way”- La La La (Excuse Me Miss), The Blueprint 2.1.
Rapper T.I. is no saint either when it comes to gay rights. On several tracks, the “Live Your Life” rapper spits homophobic rhymes that are nothing short of degrading.
On the song “Count Down,” which can be heard on T.I.’s album “Urban Legend,” he raps, “Know ya f**got n**gaz hate that I’m balling.”
On song “Did You Forget,” which can be heard on the album “King Uncaged,” T.I. raps “From the techno papa today, that s*it is g*y.”
In T.I.’s biggest homophobic rant to date, the rapper released the track “We Don’t Get Down like Yall” where he spits, “Let me set these n**gas a** straight, H** want there cloth bags loosen up f** babe. Them hot pants bad for your prostate. Lime green, hot pink, a drag queen hot date. In stores asking for the same size the b***hes buy. They say its hip, but where I’m from we call it sissified.”
Other homophobic lyrics from T.I. discography include:
• “No big mouth that hold cake, f*g bait ass n**gas allowed”- “Welcome to the Real World,” No Mercy
• “You want to play, have you gay n**gas lay down for me “- “King Back,” King
T.I. and Houston rapper Bun- B were featured on the song “Re-Akson” (remix) where rapper Killer Mike rapped “My dad ain’t raise no f*g, my mom ain’t had no punk.”
With these rappers spewing out homophobic rhymes in their music, it is somewhat hypocritical for them to be the Hip Hop spokesmen for gay rights.
But maybe Hip Hop is evolving on its stance on homosexuality.
Reggae artist Beanie Man recently released a video apologizing for his past views on homosexuality, saying, “There is no one in this world is the same as they were 20 years ago – I know I am not.”
“I was a kid and I come from Waterhouse, which is a small community,” he said. “I never know what the world is like and what the world is all about. But now I know that people live in this world that live their life differently from my life. I still have to respect and love human beings.”
Hip Hop may be learning to respect people who live their lives, as Beenie Man said, differently.