Over the course of 12 months, 19-year-old rapper Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy has evolved from a SoundCloud buzzmaker to a top-charting Billboard artist with his latest album, 17. The XXL Freshman‘s ascent in the music industry has been impeccable considering the short period of time and lack of experience he has.
Back in October 2016, prosecutors have charged the Florida rapper with aggravated battery of pregnant woman, domestic battery by strangulation, false imprisonment, and witness-tampering. If XXXTentacion is in fact found guilty of all four charges, he could be facing a substantial prison time. Yet, he has pleaded not guilty and even shrugged off the charges in various interviews, saying that the woman was attacked by someone else and wasn’t even pregnant. The trial is set to begin on October 5th, 2017.
First things first, allow me to provide you guys with some statistics. 1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. With the world population at 7 billion, this adds up to more than 1 billion women and young girls. Now, in what world do we live in where such behavior is condoned? On September 8th, Pitchfork has obtained a 142-page transcript of testimony by X’s reported victim and released it in a form of an article which basically summarizes everything he is being charged for.
The Florida rapper is known for being violent in his music, especially in his hit single “Look At Me” where he talks about how he “can’t keep his dick in his pants”. He recently released an official music video for it, a disturbing one might I add, where he goes from talking to a “dildo unicorn”, beating up a high school teacher with a dildo, to a young white kid getting lynched as a young black kid carries on to watch.
We need to separate the artist from their art. I completely understand that X is only 19, a year younger than myself. I also understand that age can be a valid excuse for a lot of things, but never ever for assaulting a female. No exceptions whatsoever. My father once told me that even geniuses can fuck up, such as Bill Cosby, R. Kelly, and CeeLo Green. “In the next 20-30 years, you’ll remember them for their music and work, not for their scandals.” It’s true, but it’s definitely not the right thing to do. Hip-Hop and Rap’s ugly embrace of sexual assault, rape, and violence is unfortunately becoming the norm nowadays, and you can thank artists such as Kodak Black, XXXTentacion, SmokePurpp and Lil Pump for that.
Back in February, Kodak violated his house arrest and was in fact accused of assaulting a 34-year-old woman at Club Climaxx, a strip club located in Miami, and the offense was listed as misdemeanor battery. The woman told the police that Kodak hit her in the forehead with his right arm, then started to repeatedly punch and kick her all over her body.
As for Lil Pump and SmokePurpp, they both conducted an interview with TheNuMiami, who are a full-service entertainment hub, as they both bragged about beating up women. What disturbed me the most is Lil Pump telling a story about how he once beat up a girl at school, where he “beamed the fuck out of that hoe”. He was 13. THIRTEEN. Keep in mind that he is also saying the n-word as if he’s entitled to, but that’s not the topic at hand.
There artists have extremely popular fanbases which mainly consists of young people, and unfortunately their actions and words become gospel to them. We are to blame here. We allowed them to reach stardom. We allowed them to become powerful celebrities and somehow “influential” to the younger generation. These artists promote violence against women, sexual assault, and rape. This is where we draw the line, no exceptions.
I did enjoy some of their music of course, I won’t lie. What I do not enjoy is promoting violence against women, let alone condoning it. I come from a family where respecting women is one of the most important things in life. I come from a family where they taught me how to love, respect, and appreciate one another. I would like to end this article with one of my all time favorite verses by the man himself, Lesane Parish Crooks.
And since we all came from a woman
Got our name from a woman and our game from a woman
I wonder why we take from our women
Why we rape our women — do we hate our women?
I think it’s time to kill for our women
Time to heal our women, be real to our women
And if we don’t we’ll have a race of babies
That will hate the ladies that make the babies
And since a man can’t make one
He has no right to tell a woman when and where to create one
So will the real men get up?
I know you’re fed up, ladies, but keep ya head up