What do you do with an artist like Iggy Azalea? She’s a white Australian emcee who’s currently got one of America’s most popular rap songs in “Fancy,” a swagger-packed ode to Southern crunk. But, as Brittney Cooper points out at Salon, white artists don’t have to appropriate black culture to be good rappers. And Cooper calls out black male rappers like T.I. for promoting a white female artist like Iggy Azalea over black women:
Forty years ago, Black male race leaders told us that race was the only thing that mattered, feminism be damned. Now in this political moment of My Brother’s Keeper, in the cultural arena, rap crews like Lil Wayne’s Young Money Cash Money and T.I.’s Grand Hustle Entertainment throw their weight behind white women rappers without a second thought. From this, Black women are supposed to conclude two things: 1) race does not matter, except if you are a Black man and 2) if Black men do anything for any woman, it’s the same as being hospitable and/or progressive to every woman.
By riding for white female rappers to the exclusion of Black women, Black men collude with the system against Black women, by demonstrating that our needs, aspirations and feelings do not matter and are not worthy of having a hearing.