Dear Azealia Banks,
I read about your interview with Playboy magazine where you apparently took off your clothes and talked about how much you hate white people. Just another day at the office for you, I suppose.
I confess I didn't read the whole exchange, though I'm sure it was packed with penetrating insight and searing self-reflection.
I did notice, however, this portion:
“I hate everything about this country. Like, I hate fat white Americans... All the people who are crunched into the middle of America, the real fat and meat of America, are these racist conservative white people who live on their farms... Those little teenage girls who work at Kmart and have a racist grandma — that’s really America.”
You then fantasized about eventually leaving this country:
“As long as I have my money, I’m getting the f*** out of here and I’m gonna leave y’all to your own devices.”
Finally you spoke a bit about the reparations you deserve, and said it's unnatural for you to be American or Christian:
“Black people need reparations for building this country, and we deserve way more f***ing credit and respect... When you rip a people from their land, from their customs, from their culture — there’s still a piece of me that knows I’m not supposed to be speaking English, I’m not supposed to be worshiping Jesus Christ...All this s**t is unnatural to me.”
Now, perhaps if I viewed all of these comments in context, they'd suddenly morph from vapid, delusional, spiteful, bigoted, and incoherent, to something quite profound, or at least halfway literate. Perhaps. But I tend to doubt it. I think "I hate fat white Americans," kind of stands on its own.
I must also admit I had no idea you existed until I read about your racist remarks. And if many different media sources had their way, I still wouldn't know about those remarks. Indeed, judging by my Facebook newsfeed, the headline from your interview is not that you expressed open resentment for an entire race of people, but that you apparently dissed Iggy Azalea.
According to other sources, the real news is not that you rhetorically urinated on all of middle America, but that you insulted Kanye West:
Azealia Banks Slams Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar and Pharrell in Playboy Interview http://t.co/rrPYLDHRq2— The Hollywood Gossip (@THGossip) March 17, 2015
And by U.S. Weekly's judgment, the biggest takeaway isn't that you viciously attacked the very teenage girls who buy your atrocious music, but that you said old people smell good:
It goes without saying of course that if your skin complexion were a few shades lighter, and your venom aimed at skin complexions a few shades darker, your comments would be headline news, there would be boycotts all over the country, and you'd be forced to apologize amid a sea of death threats.
Can you imagine the uproar if Justin Bieber -- who is horrendous in his own right, but practically Mozart compared to you -- casually opined that he hates black Americans, and then proceeded to insult "little black teenage girls who work at Kmart"? Good Lord, they would be burning him in effigy as we speak. The president would have called a press conference to denounce him. The Department of Justice would have launched an investigation. A hundred pundits would be crawling over each other to get in front of a camera and lecture America about the need to confront our endemic racism.
You complain about racism, Ms. Banks, yet the fact remains that you can hurl invective at white people as much as you like and you'll only be congratulated for it, yet if racist language is wielded by some obscure old white D-lister like Michael Richards, or some TV cook like Paula Deen, or some radio host like Don Imus, or random frat boys like these dudes from Oklahoma, the entire nation goes into code red crisis mode.
Azealia Banks performs onstage at Brixton Academy on September 22, 2014 in London, England.
Credit Ollie Millington/WireImage
Date Published Sep 22, 2014
So what in the world are you whining about? This country made you rich, it protects your right to say even the most idiotic of things, and as a young black woman, if anyone breathes even the slightest suggestion of a thought that might be perceived as insulting to you, they will be condemned, silenced, and publicly flogged.
Now, please don't imagine that I wish that fate upon you. I don't want you to be silenced or flogged or condemned. I don't even want you to be boycotted. Not that any Azaelia Banks boycott I might start would have much impact. My readers aren't in your target demographic -- and that's not because they have racial biases, but because they have self-respect and ears.
No, I don't want you to be punished for your hatred the way any white person would be punished for the same. You have free speech, which is a patently American sort of thing. A thing codified into law by white guys, and a thing fought for and died for by Americans of all races, many of them quite Caucasian indeed. These people gave you the ability to say the things you say without fear of repercussion, and my only wish is that everyone might enjoy that freedom as completely and universally as you do.
But if you really do hate this country and "everything about it" and almost everyone in it, then I would like to invite you to, by all means, leave and never return. I don't usually take the "if you don't like America, get out!" approach, but in your case, by your very words, it seems your distaste for our nation is so severe and absolute that there may be no other logical alternative. In fact, you would be a disgraceful, cowardly hypocrite if you felt this way and continued to live here, especially when you have the means to flee and take up residence in some other corner of the globe.
So, please Ms. Banks, do not hesitate. I'll help you pack. I'll buy you the ticket. I really will. I'll buy you a ticket to anywhere in the world, as long as you promise to live there for a while, or forever.
[sharequote align="center"]Please Ms. Banks, don't hesitate. I'll help you pack. I'll buy you a ticket to anywhere in the world[/sharequote]
Where will it be? Asia? Central America? Africa? Where? You can't go to Europe, there are still too many white folks there.
Give it some thought. Don't rush into this decision. And as you ponder where your new home will be, I should warn you that I looked up a few of your songs, and it strikes me as a near certainty that few other places on Earth will allow you to be a millionaire musician with lyrics like this, from your song "Yung Rapunxel":
Who’s cooler than this, witch,
Maneuver then dip, hip like the ruger - this clip,
B**ches Zooted and Sipped, I’m Suited And Zipped.
Make a move or get skipped, sis ya “who it,” and hit,
Like, who is this b**ch?
Who was fooding this fish?
Let ya hoof n’ it slip, I’ll swoop in and split.
Take two of this t*t... D-do-do-dit dit
Keep Grooving this b**ch, like ya new with this pip!
... He’s souping his drip, from the roof of this c**t.
b**ch better quit that quit that chit chat
If you strapped n***a! dare you ta, dare you ta
Just let me pop my s**t, let me hit that weed!
And sip that - aye n***as? what?!
What the f**k?
Dare you ta, dare you ta
I mean, this barely qualifies as language, Ms. Banks. "Brrrrrrrr-brrrrp-brrrrp-brrrrp/let me pop my s**t." That's not, like, an actual thought. It's sputtering, gurgling, mumbling nonsense. It reads like the work of a lobotomized schizophrenic with a speech impediment, yet this stuff has made you wealthy here in America. I'm not sure if that says anything good about our country or not, but it should certainly be a point in the positive column from your perspective. You don't therefore hate everything about the U.S., do you? You love the part where you got rich, don't you?
Go somewhere else, and you might not be quite as pleased by the reception your "art" receives. I imagine that in some places, particularly in the Middle East and parts of Africa, you might be arrested or killed for it. And if not for your music, then certainly for posing nude in Playboy. So that's something to keep in mind when contemplating your imminent relocation. You won't find anywhere that will let you be as fabulously rich and famous, but you should at least try to find a place that won't stone you to death in the middle of the street.
Also, if you hate farmers and want to avoid giving your business to those dirty, backwards barbarians, you should immediately stop eating food until you arrive at your new safe haven, which should be a place where the food isn't supplied by farmers, which is really nowhere.
It seems the choices have been narrowed down considerably.
I suppose you could settle for the next best option and pick a point on the map where they don't have the sort of vibrant and fruitful agricultural production systems that we do. That leaves you with almost the entire Third World to choose from. But while your languishing in dirt poverty in this non-American paradise, you better make sure not to eat any of the thousands of pounds of food given to these countries by organizations from ours. That stuff might originate from those racist farmers again.
That's the thing about our "white conservative" farmers: they harvest the food you buy at the grocery store (or the food your personal assistant buys at the grocery store) and they also give food to poor minority communities. Look at this Farm to Food Bank program in my state, Maryland, as an example. Those are racist conservative white Americans feeding and serving the less fortunate, many of them racial minorities.
You are much richer than the average farmer, so do you give your own surplus wealth back to the black community the same way these "racist" laborers and growers do? That's the thing, Ms. Banks. If all of the black pop stars and rappers -- the Azaelias and Kanyes of the world -- took their millions and, instead of buying 16 luxury vehicles and 12 houses and 6,000 ounces of weed and bragging about it in their music, used it to build homeless shelters and soup kitchens in impoverished black neighborhoods, most of the problems you pretend to care about could be addressed.
Not to mention, if you decided to ever use your platform to spread a redemptive and constructive message, rather than babbling about drugs, sex, and shooting people, again the plight of the average black American could be dramatically improved. But you don't do that, because you know the garbage, the poison, the toxic fallout you call music, sells. It's a business strategy. You escaped from a poor black community only to use negative stereotypes about poor black communities as a marketing gimmick to enrich yourself on the backs and at the expense of poor black communities.
This is the behavior not of someone actually worried about black people, but of a parasite. A leech. A bloodsucker.
Do you know who is most responsible for the continued struggles of blacks in America? You, Ms. Banks. You and people like you. You are the problem. You are at fault. You pad your bottom line by promoting all of the worst attitudes and behaviors. If a black girl in the inner city takes your music to heart, she'll stay poor, and she'll stay in the inner city, and eventually she'll be dead or in jail or collecting welfare while raising six kids by six different deadbeats.
Meanwhile, by stripping off your clothes and spouting these thug cliches, you are only acting to cement those cliches in the public conscience and denigrate your entire race in the process. It's a shame, Ms. Banks. You could do so many wonderful things for America and for the black community if only you cared to. But you don't. You're too selfish. Too full of resentment. Too prejudiced and narcissistic.
The media might not make much of the the fact that a prominent pop star just spewed venom and bigotry and elitist snobbery at millions of her fellow countrymen, but you still have to live with yourself and with the knowledge that all you've contributed to our society is smut, hate, and division.
But that's neither here nor there if you're moving anyway. Did we ever decide on your destination? Let's see: it has to be a place without white people and farmers; without teenage girls working retail; without middle class people "crunched up" everywhere; a place where you can still speak freely; a place where you can produce your music without censorship or control; where you can run around half naked or completely naked without being arrested or executed, and, for good measure, a place where you can openly mock the predominant race and culture of the region without fear of a violent backlash.
Well, that really only leaves Antarctica (the big frozen land mass way down yonder).
Remember to pack a coat.
P.S. I hate to get technical, but you do realize that you just posed nude for a magazine owned by a rich old white guy, right?
Listen to Matt's latest podcast here. Contact him with general comments and inquiries about speaking engagements at MattWalsh@TheMattWalshBlog.com.
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