Apologies warranted to Black community by some rappers

William T. Robinson, Jr.

There is no shortage of individuals or groups that have not apologized in recent years for discriminative and offensive comments they allegedly made about other individuals or groups. You have a plethora of men apologizing to women in general for past behaviors contributing to sexual harassment; men and women apologizing for racially insensitive comments made recently or even in their younger years; people charged with making anti-Semitic comments and being forced to apologize; and even people apologizing for bullying. It appears that anytime a group feels they have been disrespected, they are warranted an apology even when some allegations are open to subjective interpretation.

Some high profile politicians, celebrities, or business moguls have made public apologies in order to appeal to the mercy of the offended group in hope of salvaging their careers. An apology may or may not work for some individuals, seeing that some are forgiven while others are not. Many careers have been terminated. It is not unusual for a specific group to demand an apology from an individual with hopes of bringing national attention to their group or organization.

While most apologies are warranted, there is a history of continued exploitation and degradation of women, especially Black women. Many rappers have yet to apologize. They flaunt misogynistic lyrics, and objectify women as subservient sex objects to be used by men. Those rappers exploit women by calling them ‘hoes, bitches, and freaks’ as well as ‘sexual toys.’ Many would argue that it’s because Black women have not demanded an apology. In fact, with the monumental damage being done in the psyche of impressionable young people, you find some Black female rappers following suit. They embrace derogatory, exploitative name calling in their own songs. This further aides in the exploitation of Black women.

Why do some rappers feel exempt? Others have nurtured an environment where they are careful not to intentionally offend groups. But these rappers feel they are exempt. These rappers should be held accountable for immeasurable damage done in corrupting the moral values of a young impressionable generation. The saddest part is that these rappers are rewarded and applauded by the very ones they are disrespecting and exploiting. Where is the public outrage? If Blacks don’t see the need for an apology, why should other groups be concerned? This barrage of blatant disrespect and insensitivity by many rappers only aids in supporting the negative stereotypes the world has come to accept about Blacks.

Apologizing to a group you may have hurt is part of a learning experience as well as a healing process—especially if you did not intentionally know the extent of the hurt you were causing. Such as the case of Kevin Hart, a Black actor and comedian, apologizing to the LGBTQ community for homophobic tweets and jokes he made in the past. For the most part he was forgiven; his career survived; and others were put on notice concerning making LGBTQ insensitive comments and tweets. Even Nick Cannon (another Black actor, singer and comedian) apologized to the Jewish community for anti-Semitic comments he made on his podcast.

I can only begin to wonder why it seems to be okay and accepted by the Black community to accept this blatant exploitation by rappers, especially as it relates to disrespecting Black women. One may assume it is out of naiveté or arrogance and grandiosity by these rappers in their pursuit of making money. Do they have any idea about the gross disservice they are doing to Black women and the African American community in helping in the disintegration of our moral compass—a moral compass that is crucial to our relationship with God? Tell me an apology to the Black community is not warranted!

Buying into our own exploitation should not be tolerated or normalized. We must educate our young Black children about respecting themselves and others. It should be emphasized that the exploitation of Blacks by other Blacks for monetary gain is unacceptable. Those willingly participating in this practice are not our friends and should be renounced or boycotted. As it stands now, many of these rappers owe the Black community a huge apology.

I am literally begging more conscientious and learned Blacks to help wake up their lost or unknowing children from continuing to support their own exploitation and dehumanization by rappers. Demand respect. It should start with demanding an apology from the rappers and others who have aided in the exploitation of Black females for monetary gain.

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