L.A. Reid Apologizes for Lil Wayne Derogatory Lyrical Reference to Emmett Till
Epic Records, through its chairman L.A. Reid, has apologized to the family of Emmett Till for Lil Wayne's derogatory reference to the civil rights figure's death in his song "Karate Chop", which remix done by rapper Future leaked online. Wayne apparently likened sex to Till's beating back in 1955 which had actually spurred the U.S. civil rights movement.
African-American Till, at the age of 14, was beaten to death by two men for allegedly whistling at a white woman in the village of Money, Mississippi where he was visiting family. An all-white jury acquitted the murderers, drawing attention to racial violence and injustice and sparking the civil rights movement in the U.S.
Airickca Gordon-Taylor, Till's cousin, said their family "was very offended, very hurt ... [and] disturbed by it," and that Wayne's lyrics were "offensive not only to us, but to our ancestors and to women and to [the artists] themselves as young, black men. We found it dishonorable to [Emmett's] name and what his death has meant to us as a people and as a culture."
Epic Records has stated that the remix was unauthorized and has promised to delete the offensive lyrics upon the official version's release "out of respect for the legacy of Emmett Till and his family." The record company made known that it is "going through great efforts to take down the unauthorized version."
Notwithstanding the current brouhaha over his now infamous song, Lil Wayne premiered a new music video "Love Me" featuring the controversy-involved Future and fellow rapper Drake. It is a single from his "I Am Not A Human Being II" album, his eighth studio set which he released back in 2010 but Wayne released the track and the video just in time for Valentine's Day, perhaps to fend off the backlash following the whole Till controversy.
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