Rapper Future’s new song, “Karate Chop (Remix)”, has received a lot of negative attention because of a lyric from Lil Wayne. In the song, Lil Wayne says that he’s going to “pop a pill” and “beat that p***y up like Emmett Till.” Emmett Till is the 15 year-old that was beaten to death in 1955. His mother chose to have an open casket funeral for her son, who was unrecognizable after the beating. This is one of many events that sparked the Civil Rights movement. JET Magazine even featured a photo of Till in his casket on the cover.
Lil Wayne apparently thought nothing was wrong with the metaphor. Many people have spoken out against the song. Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr. and Stevie Wonder both expressed concern. “You can’t equate that to Emmett Till,” Wonder states to the Associated Press. “You just cannot do that… I think you got to have someone around you, even if they are the same age or older, to say, ‘Yo, that’s not happening,’”
Epic Records, Future’s label, released a statement apologizing for the incident. “We regret the unauthorized remix version of Future’s ‘Karate Chop’, which was leaked online and contained hurtful lyrics. Out of respect for the legacy of Emmett till and his family and the support of the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr… we are going through great efforts to take down the unauthorized version.”
Lil Wayne has yet to officially comment on the incident.
I know we love our entertainers for their openness and honesty, but they must have a filter. There are just somethings you can’t say. I hope other artists will learn from his situation. Some things are too important to become fodder in your song.