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Black gays protest DMX at tonight's Chicago concert

Rapper DMX has a problem with gays. He has a serious problem, because nearly every track he produces contains out-of-control homobigoted vitriol. It’s time for a little education for DMX and his fans, and it will take place tonight at 6 p.m. at the House of Blues located on 329 North Dearborn in Chicago.

This man earns a paycheck for churning out ignorant bigotry like this (via Jasmyne):

His most recent offense was in the Busta Rhymes remix of “Touch It,” where he says:

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Niggaz ain’t built for nothin’ but frontin’
Come through, faggots it the security frontin’ Get that do, What that do? How that do?
Fuck you faggot, I shot at you. And what?
You and you mans butt, in your man’s truck
But your chance is up, now get up.

Other examples include the DMX hit “Where Da Hood At?”

Last I heard, y’all niggaz was havin’ sex, with the same sex.
I show no love, to homo thugs.
Empty out, reload, and throw more slugs
How you gonna explain fuckin’ a man?
Even if we squashed the beef, I ain’t touchin’ ya hand.
I don’t buck with chumps, for those to been to jail.
That’s the cat with the Kool-Aid on his lips and pumps.
I don’t fuck with niggaz that think they broads

If you are in Chicago and want more info on the protest, email or call (773) 793-5211.

This protest follows the cancellation of the music industry’s AIDS education organization LIFEBeat’s Reggae Gold Jumpoff concert. The event was deep-sixed after a large protest by black LGBT bloggers because of LIFEBeat’s inclusion of homophobic artists Beenie Man and TOK on the bill. (My posts here).

When Spike Lee, Al Sharpton and Essence Magazine took on the ubiquitous misogyny and violence that occurs in a subgenre of hip hop music and videos, it caused a great deal of controversy. It will be interesting to see the support and coverage of the above effort, because it’s one matter to take on a genre of music — dance hall/reggae — that represents a tiny fraction of music fans; going after a popular rap or hip/hop artist in the black community for their homophobia is likely to cause a sizeable fan backlash. But it’s time to call it out.


A good companion piece to put this into perspective is Keith’s post about homophobia at black radio stations.

Recording artist and Chicago native Jody Watley (remember “Looking For A New Love”?) performed at the opening ceremonies of the Gay Games. Since she was in town, Chicago radio station V103 asked her to do a live interview. This was just before she was to go onstage at Soldier Field. Guess what happened?

The interviewer told Watley that she could not mention or discuss her performance at the Gay Games, only her in-store appearance at a local Virgin Record Store.

Watley was shocked.

“I had been to another station the day before — a pop station — and that’s all we talked about,” she said. But V103 is an urban contemporary station catering largely to the African American community. Perhaps that explains the differing responses at the radio stations. “I think that [decision to censor the discussion] did surprise me because [the Gay Games advertisement] was all over the city. It wasn’t like it was a secret or something to be ashamed of. The city seemed to embrace the fact that the games were there.”

Sadly, this is not the first time someone has tried to censor Watley’s pro-gay message. When she wrote the song “Affection” back in 1996, that song also drew some criticism for a line in the lyrics that said “it doesn’t matter if you’re straight or gay.”

“Over the years it has been my experience – a unique one – because I obviously have [walked] parallel paths. One is with R&B; and the other is with [pop]. And it’s always been interesting to me the differences between the two. Going back to when I did “Red, Hot and Blue” [an AIDS benefit compilation album], on the black side I would be apprehensive to talk about AIDS and HIV. On the pop side, it’s like tell us more.”

Watley says she finds the attitude “disappointing.” “It just sort of reaffirms a narrow mindedness and a close mindedness that I think is very unfortunate,” she said in the interview.

It’s tiring to see these incidents of homophobia in the black community go unchallenged. This kind of attitude is not called out widely when it comes out of the mouths of black media figures, politicians and religious leaders. While black gays can and do take this on, it’s precious little pressure, given our numbers, compared to the effect of the gay population at large if it also got behind the effort to combat the bigotry. Gay rights organizations are silent, as are pols who would normally be our allies.

* Watch Jody Watley perform at the Gay Games
* Jody Watley’s MySpace Page
Jody Watley’s web site

V103 Information
233 North Michigan Ave, Suite 2700
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 540-2000

V103 is a Clear Channel Communications Property
Earl Jones, Regional VP/Market Manager
Angela T. Ingram, VP, Communications
Elroy R. C. Smith , Operations Manager / Program Director
Armando Rivera , Asst. Program Director / Music Director

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding