According to the BBC News, Megan Thee Stallion was reportedly shot in the foot by rapper Tory Lanez on July 12, 2020. Since this event happened, Megan’s case has been an ongoing trial. Everyone in the industry and fans of both of these artists are awaiting the verdict to see if Tory Lanez is innocent or guilty. However, many people in the industry have not been silent.
A famous DJ named DJ Academiks came out recently to say that he felt that Megan Thee Stallion was fabricating her trauma. Then the rapper Drake and rapper 21 Savage released an album this year referencing the situation. Drake basically said that she lied about being shot in his song “Circo Loco.”
As an African American, rhythm and blues, jazz, country, hip-hop and rap all originate from my culture. Nevertheless, rap is the only genre of music that not only has a history of promoting violence but protecting it too. Now rap music is not all bad. For many artists it is used as a place to vent. It is a safe place to be heard.
Still, I find that hip-hop only amplifies certain voices. For male rappers, rap music has become a safe haven. They can rap about violence, say derogatory things about black women or even have the choice to use rap music as a light. While male rappers have all this freedom, female rappers are kept on a tightrope.
Matter of fact, before they can even be allowed to rap, they must fit the physical requirements. Once they fit the physical requirements, they are expected to rap about their bodies. They must oversexualize themselves and their images. They must look a certain way just to be heard or they get ridiculed.
Hip-hop has a long history of misogynoir, and this does not just affect female rappers but Black women as a whole. Female rappers like Meg Thee Stallion are just a visualization of it happening before our eyes in higher places. Many Black women think that just because they have accumulated prestige, money or fame, that will alleviate their chances of experiencing misogynoir.
Having said that, if those that are in positions of power are not shielded from misogynoir, then what protections do Black women who are not in positions of power and privilege actually have? For example, according to Billboard, the rapper Rick Ross admitted that he would never sign a female rapper because he would be spending so much money on her that he would expect sexual favors from her.
Recently this exact situation happened with the rapper Latto, and she admitted that she was not able to get a collaboration because the person she was collabing with expected this kind of favor. Yet, when she admitted that it was a famous male rapper who demonstrated this kind of behavior she received backlash.
She admitted that she wished she would not have said anything. Black men are so protected in this genre that it forces the voices of Black women to be muffled, stifled and silenced. I will never understand how a genre that was created by African Americans only protects Black men mostly. I say mostly because the same violence that not only affects Black women in the hip-hop industry also affects male rappers, but the biggest difference is the level of empathy.
When a male rapper dies from gun violence, the world cries. For example, the rapper Takeoff recently died a tragic death due to gun violence. The same violence that is promoted in rap music.
At the same time, when Meg Thee Stallion speaks up about her trauma due to gun violence, those same empathic eyes become blind to her situation. Rap has always been a place for African Americans to be able to not just vent, but to express ourselves. This makes me wonder, will Black women ever be able to use this device when it is most prominently used to be divisive towards them?