Lil Wayne will undoubtedly disappoint many of his fans when they see him deny the existence of racism live on TV.
The rapper was invited onto FOX’s weeknight sports show Undisputed to discuss NFL and ABL but the conversation inevitably took a turn towards his music career.
Lil Wayne was, bizarrely, asked to interpret why crowds of white kids attend his concerts and he came to a pretty surprising conclusion.
— UNDISPUTED (@undisputed) September 13, 2016
I don’t want to be bashed because I don’t wanna sound like I’m on the wrong side – if there is a side… But I thought that was clearly a message that there was no such thing as racism.
Lil Wayne went on to explain that he was grateful for the diversity of his fanbase, saying: “My crowd has always been everybody, thank God.”
Of course, these comments have shocked almost everyone particularly as Weezy, originally from New Orleans, has rapped about racism in the past.
While it is not for me to assume anything about his personal experience of racism, the lyrics in songs such as My Heart Races On – including lines like ‘We in a race against racism, that’s a colour run’ – do speak for themselves.
Lil Wayne’s interview on Undisputed has sparked some emotional and heated responses on Twitter:
Weezy….. You are a damn fool and I no longer support you.. #weezyonundisputed
— YofaSho (@YO4SHOMUSIC) September 14, 2016
— Author Kimberly Fain (@KimberlyFain) September 13, 2016
— William Haywood (@Will_CLT_2017) September 13, 2016
— Steve Campbell (@kcampbellss) September 16, 2016
— Kimberly Skipper (@kdskipper) September 14, 2016
Other Twitter users have applauded Lil Wayne for expressing his opinion openly at a time when the global discussion regarding racism is understandably charged with emotion, preconception and pressure on public figures to speak out for the masses of ethnic minorities who feel discriminated against every day.
— Sharrell (@sharrell86) September 14, 2016
— victor rodriguez (@vjr97) September 13, 2016
— victor rodriguez (@vjr97) September 14, 2016
Some commentators pointed out a darker interpretation of Weezy’s words, ruminating that perhaps he felt forced to express this misjudged opinion in order to keep his white fanbase happy.
— screws513 (@screws513) September 14, 2016
Lil Wayne’s media training is by far the best in the business! He’s curving questions & keeping his endorsements! #WeezyOnUndisputed
— WombRaider™ (@KinggHov13) September 13, 2016
Whatever Weezy’s motivations, it’s undeniable that his comments were odd. They strike me as incredibly narcissistic and selfish.
To assume that his music has solved racism is one (very self centred) thing, but to deny the existence of racism because it doesn’t directly affect him or his music career is really unforgivable.
Not only is it misguided for the rapper to look inwardly upon the global problem of racism – simply analysing his own concerts – but it also seems a particularly insensitive thing to say in the aftermath of a number of suspected racially aggravated police shootings in America.
Pray for Weezy, he knows not what he has done.