The use of the n-word was brought up during a newly-released interview with Ja Rule and Vlad TV when the Queens, New York rapper was questioned about Jennifer Lopez’s use of the word on her “I’m Real (Remix),” which Ja Rule wrote and also appeared on.

On the song, Lopez raps, “I tell them niggas, mind their biz, but they don’t hear me though.”

According to Ja Rule, there is an “unwritten” rule that Puerto Ricans and those of Spanish descent can use the n-word.

“It’s kind of an unwritten thing that Spanish and Puerto Ricans and niggas—We’re all kinda in the same family,” Ja Rule said. “So, it’s like why can’t she say ‘nigga’? All my Spanish niggas I know say ‘nigga.’ I never looked at them in any way and said ‘Yo, watch that.’ I think they were upset because they don’t see her as Jenny from the block, Jenny from The Bronx. They see her as this global icon. Matter of fact, some people probably see her as white. So, it’s just one of those things. And I think that’s why people were really upset. Because they don’t understand the dialogue that is used in our hoods. They don’t understand. That’s how Puerto Ricans, Spanish people speak. That’s how black people speak. And we are allowed to speak that way amongst each other…It’s different when somebody outside of your group says it. Then it becomes ‘Okay, well why are you saying [it]? Are you saying it because you think it’s cool?’ Just by not knowing makes it a problem.”

Ja Rule was later questioned about white rapper V-Nasty and Moroccan rapper French Montana’s use of the n-word. He explained that V-Nasty doesn’t get a pass to use the word despite “how hood” she may appear and also revealed why an artist like French Montana does get a pass.

“It’s not about being hood,” he said. “It’s not about being from the hood that gives you the pass to say. It’s being that minority. I don’t care how hood you are you will never share my struggle. You will never look in the history book and say ‘God damn, those were my people that were being slain and hung and so forth and so on.’ Never. So, I think that’s where the issue comes. I say certain people get passes like that because they are deemed that…You can look at it however you want to look at it, but I know for a fact. From living on both sides of the fence that our neighborhoods are policed different than white neighborhoods.”

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