Posted on June 6, 2011 ·
Eminem may want to think twice about his public homophobia from here on out. Upon his elevation to superstardom, Eminem became known amongst the most controversial rappers for his slander against pop artists and the gay community. In a now different atmosphere than ten years ago when he began, his anti-gay lyrics seem to be the most out of place and even risqué in our growing and evolving world of sexuality. In a recently leaked song from Eminem’s new venture with long-time and born-again friendship with Detroit compatriot Royce da 5’9″, he may have unintentionally waged a war he’s not equipped to battle… or did he?
Same-sex marriage is only performed in seven districts within the United States and eleven other countries; recognized in six; and counted as civil unions and partnerships in nearly 22 out of the 195 countries in the world. The battle for equality in sexual orientation is far from over, but has made significant strides amongst the youth, if no one else.
Over three quickly passed years, Lady Gaga has proven the previous statement to be true even more than the phenomenon of Beyonce following the release of “Single Ladies.” Gaga who debuted her first studio album in 2008 entitled Fame (2008), followed up with The Fame Monster(2009) and Born This Way(2011), was introduced into the industry amongst rumors and attacks about her sexual make-up. Although dismissing allegations of being born as an intersex child, she revealed to Barbara Walters in ABC News’ 10 Most Fascinating People special that she embraces androgyny and expressed her love for those who do as well. Achieving international success due to her popular singles “Just Dance,” “Poker Face,” “Bad Romance,” and her most recent “Born This Way,” she’s sold over 14 million records worldwide and simultaneously gained the hearts of the LGBTQ community. Noted as the only celebrity of her caliber to attend both the Human Rights Campaign dinner and National Equality March all in the same weekend, she’s been appointed as the modern-day “gay icon of pop.”
Eminem, who returned from a five-year hiatus in 2009, came back during the escalation of Gaga’s career, including her becoming one of the very few featured artists of long-time reigning pop queen, Beyonce. In a newly refreshed atmosphere more prone to speaking out against gay discrimination than when in his days of ridicule of N*Sync and Britney, it could be his best bet to eliminate his homophobic views from his material. Or, at least, any talk about the beloved Lady Gaga.
In the fashion of Eminem’s nitpicking controversies, his newest song is no different. Recently leaked entitled, “A Kiss,” the Bangladesh-produced track catches the audience with its catchy rhythm. Partnered with the perfect matching rhyme patterns of da 5’9″ and himself, it’s not necessarily unexpected what he has to say. In conversation amongst strippers, random women, and Katy Perry, Eminem goes on to recites the following lines:
“Tell Lady Gaga she can quit her job at the post office / She’s still a mail lady/ Wouldn’t fuck her with her dick / You heard it / The verdict’s in.”
Obviously making a pun regarding Gaga’s alleged sexual make-up, he calls her a male and alludes to the fact that he wouldn’t want to touch her or anyone similar (intersexed) who may also associate with her so-called lifestyle. Maybe he’s relapsed? At 2001′s Grammy Awards he made an effort of “reconciliation” with the gay community following a shocking performance alongside openly gay legend, Elton John. So what does it mean now that he’s attacking the now number one gay icon in the country?
In the end, it doesn’t matter if it was meant as simply a personal attack against Gaga. Since it also involves lyrics that assassinates her from a sexual stance, it’s a blatant disrespectful comment amongst the fight for gay rights and respect. Unfortunately, for the hip-hop community, though it may mean much for many, it will also most definitely not be voiced as such on a large scale. In an openly homophobic society that rap music continues to breed within African-American dominated neighborhoods, “gay” is often portrayed as a plague, not a way of life. Eminem’s lyrics will most likely be recited upon play and reiterated amongst the youth as smooth as water in the ocean and slips of the tongue. The most crucial response, though, belongs to pop culture.
As hip-hop has largely become one of the most popular genres of pop, it would be interesting to see the response if the song were to be released as a single… but I’m sure they know better than that. Other than any hype that may surround the song, the audience for which it was recorded will most likely not participate in a movement against the discrimination it depicts. This is something that may only be addressed by the gay-straight alliance of fans within the pop community. Not to negate the fact that there are millions of hip-hop fans who are either gay or not homophobic, since a movement has yet to begin within the community, it must begin without.
Eminem, much more-so than Royce da 5’9″, has ironically become a rap icon within the pop community. Most definitely belonging to a different percentage of it, his words remain to reach far and wide throughout the world wide web. It’s possible that if the alternating realities of pop music speak out against this reality of homophobia, then, and only then, may things actually begin to change. This is not an issue of race, but of preference; Not rappers against singers, but fans of alike music coming together to make a change for the better for all. Even more-so today than any other time, rap music is not belonging to a secluded radio station or television station. But the homophobia remains unchecked because it hasn’t been checked by its consumers.
It’s about time consumers and members of the hip-hop community–which also belongs to all walks of life, races and sexual orientations– make the choice to protest and demand change. We, too, are affected; Straight, gay and the inbetween. Gaga, as someone who isn’t so easily silenced or softly hush-mouthed, may choose to lash out. And if she does… Roman, you may have a problem.
Listen to the full track below, or the entire verse which begins at the 2:21 mark