J. Cole found himself in hot water following the release of Drake’s “Jodeci Freestyle,” for an offensive line referencing autism.
The Anti-Bullying Alliance started an online petition, calling for apologies from both artists and a reworking of lyrics, to leave out the reference to the condition. On the line in question, Cole raps “Go check the numbers dummy, that’s just me gettin’ started/ I’m artistic, you n****s is autistic, retarded.”
While rappers reciting offensive lines is anything but new in hip-hop –especially following Rick Ross’ Molly fiasco and Lil Wayne’s Emmet Till mishap–this is a new position for J.Cole, who usually strays from controversy. Feeling the heat from the offended families and groups and realizing his mistake, the Born Sinner took to his blog to admit his mistake.
He stresses that the apology is sincere, and that it needed to be done. Cole stated that he should have known better and that he felt embarrassed. The platinum-selling artist concluded his letter by reassuring those he offended that he never meant to spread hate or misinformation, only love through his music.
While we may never know the true intentions behind this letter, it seems that Cole really felt sorry for his wrongdoing, and will attempt to educate himself about Autism, to make sure he doesn’t commit the same mistake again.
Check out J. Cole’s Letter:
Recently there’s been a trend that includes rappers saying something
offensive, only to be attacked for it in the media and pressured to
apologize. I have to be completely honest and say there’s a part of me
that resents that. I view rap similar to how I view comedy. It’s going
to ruffle feathers at times. It’s going to go “too far”. I do not
believe that an apology is needed every time someone is offended,
especially when that apology is really only for the sake of saving an
endorsement or cleaning up bad press.
With that said, this is not the case today. This letter is sincere.
This apology IS necessary.
In a recent verse on the song “Jodeci Freestyle”, I said something
highly offensive to people with Autism. Last week, when I first saw a
comment from someone outraged about the lyric, I realized right away
that what I said was wrong. I was instantly embarrassed that I would
be ignorant enough say something so hurtful. What makes the crime
worse is that I should have known better.
To the entire Autism community who expressed outrage, I’m moved and
inspired by your passion, and I’m amazed at how strong you are as a
unit. I have now read stories online from parents about their
struggles and triumphs with raising an Autistic child and I admire how
incredibly strong you have to be to do so. It’s touching. It also
makes what I said even more embarrassing for me. I feel real shame.
You have every right to be angry.
You can check out the rest of his apology letter by clicking here.