Talib Kweli Says A "Gay Rapper Who's Better Than Everybody" Would Increase Tolerance

Talib Kweli also offers his thoughts on New York's controversial stop-and-frisk policies.

Hip Hop's stance on homosexuality is ever-evolving, with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' recent performance of "Same Love" at the MTV Video Music Awards as an example.

In a recent interview with Mother Jones, Talib Kweli spoke on Hip Hop's growing acceptance of Homosexuality. "Homosexuality in Hip Hop is an extension of homosexuality in the black community," he explained. "The black community is very, very conservative when it comes to homosexuality, and I don't mean conservative in the good way, like we're saving money. I mean very intolerant. That's how it's always been."

Despite such intolerance, Kweli sees progress. "I do see a new generation, partly because of the internet and technology, embracing it. I see young black boys, young black women in the hood embracing homosexuality in ways they never would've when I was younger. When I was a teenager, the way some of these kids out here be actively gay, it would have been ridiculed in the hood. And now the hood is a bit more accepting. Begrudgingly accepting, but definitely more accepting than 20 years ago when I was a little kid. That doesn't mean that anybody should stop fighting for equality just because people are begrudgingly a little more accepting. Now people won't beat you up; they might just talk behind your back."

The Brooklyn emcee proposed one way in which homosexuality could be accepted in Hip Hop, paralleling it with another unlikely Rap success story. "But as far as Hip Hop, it's real simple. There just needs to be a gay rapper—he doesn't have to be flamboyant, just a rapper who identifies as gay—who's better than everybody. Unfortunately Hip Hop is so competitive that in order for fringe groups to get in, you gotta be better than whoever's the best. So before Eminem, the idea that there would be a white rapper that anybody would really check for was fantastic or amazing or impossible. You had people like 3rd Bass and other people came through, and people respected them for their dedication to Hip Hop. But people didn't really take white rappers seriously until Eminem, because he was better than everybody. Like female emcees, you need to be like Lauryn Hill or Nicki Minaj or killing everything before somebody takes you seriously."

Kweli touched on another sensitive subject: New York's controversial stop and frisk laws, which have given police extensive latitude in searching criminal suspects.

"That's all propaganda and it's bullshit," said Talib in response to New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly's suggestion that people in minority communities want more stop and frisk. "No one likes to be treated like that. For him to make that statement is ignorant. What it's saying is that because you're poor, because you live in a neighborhood that deals with oppressed conditions, you deserve to be treated like a criminal. In our Constitution it says you have the right to live without illegal search and seizure. What else is stop and frisk? These neighborhoods are unsafe not because there's not enough cops illegally frisking people. They're not safe because of economic conditions. They're not safe because of all types of things in the government that people like Bloomberg and Ray Kelly should be looking to fix instead of randomly searching kids in the hood. If you go to a college campus and you do stop and frisk, you're going to find a lot of drugs there, too."

RELATED: Talib Kweli - "Human Mic"

41 Comments

  • Anonymous

    Talib, in the immortal words of Riley Freeman, 'ni...............'

  • Anonymous

    College kids aren't walking around campus with guns. If frisking people on the street prevents a few murders then I'm all for it.

  • MESSAGE TO EVERYONE ON THIS PAGE

    Next time someone judges you, remember that you where here, spewing homophobic hate. Karma is a bitch... Just remember.

  • Irene J. Martin

    my buddy's mother makes $86 every hour on the computer. She has been unemployed for 5 months but last month her check was $16662 just working on the computer for a few hours. Go to this web site and read more... www.Cafe44.com Yeah being the co founder of Def-Jam with Russel Simmons, he sure is whats wrong with hip hop you fucking IDIOT. And he's rich because he's a musical genius, do some research.

  • trackstar

    whats this nigga coming out now... like if ur not gay why even bother bringing this topic up like its something really important.

  • chillthrillz

    the emasculation of the african american and hip-hop is in full effect,,,,,what the fuck is this nigga talking for ,,,what you a homosexual?,,,,this nigga!!,,trying to kick knowledge non cipher kid!!! NO ONE DESERVES ANY SPECIAL TREATMENT,,,OR PRESS FOR FUCKING THE SAME SEX,,,,ITS JUST SEX HIP-HOP DOES NOT NEED A HOMOSEXUAL RAPPER,,,,,IF YOU ARE A HOMOSEXUAL YOU ARE CUTTING YOUR BLOODLINE,,IF THAT IS WHAT YOU WANT THEN COOL,,HOWEVER!!!,,,,HIP-HOP IS PARTLY ABOUT STRENGTHENING THE AFRICAN AMERICAN BLOODLINE THROUGH PEACE LOVE UNITY AND FUN ,,,,,BUT I WILL NEVER HAVE A DESIRE TO HERE A GAY RAPPER,,,SHIT I PROBABLY LISTEN TO THEM ANYWAY AND DONT EVEN KNOW IT,,AND DONT CARE,,,,,,BUST YOUR NUT AND SHUT THE FUCK UP,,,,THIS GAY AGENDA IS WAY OUT OF CONTROL THERE HAVE BEEN HOMOSEXUALS FOREVER,,,,DONT MEAN I WANT HEAR FUCK BOYS CONFESSING COMING OUT THE CLOSET ABOUT FUCKING PLEASE!!!!!!!

  • The Bible

    "26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. (Romans 1:26-27 KJV)" "9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 KJV)" "8 But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully; 9 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, 10 For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; 11 According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust. (1 Timothy 1:811 KJV)"

  • England's Kenny

    If more rappers came out of the closet frequently, surely that could also increase tolerance? With fans finding out that their favourite rapper(s) are gay, and a larger presence of gay rappers in the industry, attitudes could eventually change.

  • triPAUD

    Funny, hip hop is pretty accepting of bisexual women though, even if not always for the most altruistic reasons.

  • Anonymous

    weel wahats the problem we have enough gay rappers: - drake - kanye west - diddy bisexual - mase bisexual - 2pac bisexual remember him being the back up dancer for Digital and his big earrings

  • Anonymous

    no you attention whore. Stop with comments in the media and make music!

  • Anonymous

    wtf is "hip-hop's stance on homosexuality"? there was never any so called stance. the only rapper that was ever obsessed with it was Eminem.

    • dRob

      ahhh rasta man! you faggot shottas bumbleclot. JAH HATES GAYS!

    • Anonymous

      yeah thats a good point. I don't think it was ever more homophobic than america in general, just voiced it. And to add to that point Eminem also pubicly turned around and supported a long time ago. dancehall is way more homophobic.

  • COCA

    TOO BAD TALIB IS NOT BETTER THAN EVERYBODY... OTHERWISE HE WOULD FIT THE BILL.

  • sxxx9

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mH-cIzI4iQA

  • sxxx9

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo2EswS8o08

  • sxxx9

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SCtyEOJy0A

  • SEX BEAST

    "because you're poor, because you live in a neighborhood that deals with oppressed conditions, you deserve to be treated like a criminal." Correct

  • Anonymous

    Does this dude have more stupid words comin out of his fuckin mouth ??

  • lOLMAN

    Kendrick needs to come out of the closet. Dude is mad gay. Ab-Soul probably fucked him in the ass during GKMC recording sessions.

  • Anonymous

    OOPS I MEAN KANYE

  • Anonymous

    BUT KAYE WILL NEVER BE THE BEST RAPPER IM JUS SAYIN THO

  • HandsOfTime

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  • VividSci

    I think Kweli is right, if a gay nigga came out spitting hellfire bars of science mufuckas would take note and give respect. Being a fucking bigot just ain't what's up any more.

  • Anonymous

    I wouldn't listen to an openly gay rapper if he were on the mic rapping about gay sex or being in love with another man. Its not that I'm intolerant, I could care less about gay people or what they do, live and let live, to each his own etc etc, but I just can't relate to that lifestyle or train of thought, it holds no interest to me whatsoever. Of course in this overly sensitive world we live in now I'm sure that statement is considered homophobic and offensive

    • Doubl Negative

      @Ted; I get fed up coming on these pages and having to explain to morons like yourself why Black/gay comparisons are inaccurate and offensive, but here goes. Gays are not a race of people, like smokers are not a race of people. If a smoker is treated as a pariah due to his lifestyle, it would be incredibly disingenuous and damn offensive to compare his plight with Jews. Simply extrapolating by bringing race into the agenda doesn't strengthen your argument, it merely weakens it as you can't justify why gays should be treated like normal people without mentioning unrelated Black topics. I would be willing to support gays if not for that reason. Political correctness governs too much of hip-hop these days, and this is the reason the quality has declined. Not only do you have to cater for gays, but white girls, middle-cass people and other outsiders who don't understand and fully appreciate our music. That's why I only listen death metal these days.

    • Anonymous

      I can agree w/ anon1. Btw, sexual preference is not the same as race, no matter how much people try to say that. someone shouldn't be judged or persecuted for sexual orientation, but don't act like they're the same experience. Just cause not everyone wants to hear explicit lyrics from 2livecrew, theres nothing wrong w/ wanting to hear homosexual lyrics. Doesn't mean they shouldn't be made though

    • @Ted

      this constant comparison between the black cause and the gay cause just to make some point for the latter is overplayed now

    • Anonymous

      ^^^ And that's the problem, its not enough to just tolerate each other, we all have agree with each other all the time and sing Kumbaya together and never have a difference of opinion or your the Anti-Christ lol so be it I dont really care enough to be politically correct about it...... If a gay guy wanna rap more power to him but dont nail me to a cross just because I choose not to listen

    • Ted

      Many white folks would say the same about African Americans and rappers (rap music). Its not that they'd be intolerant, they could care less about african americans or what they do, live and let live, to each his own etc etc, but they just can't relate to that lifestyle or train of thought, it holds no interest to them whatsoever. Of course in this overly sensitive world we live in now I'm sure that statement is considered racist and offensive.

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