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Kendrick Lamar Refuses to Attend GQ Men of the Year Event over Insulting Magazine Feature with Racist Overtones

GQ-names-Kendrick-lamar-Rapper-of-the-Year-01 Magazine naming a Rapper of the Year” is just about as credible as magazine covering Grits and Pork Chop recipes. The publication (GQ) which had targeted wealthy white businessmen for decades is trying to update the brand by appearing more in touch with urban culture. Obviously this is an effort to appeal to more advertisers like sneakers and more young-end fashion retailers, technology and as well as potential younger white with expendable income who are very much into urban culture. The mistake MANY of these publishers, who have previously avoided urban culture, make is failing to completely alter the perception of their brand by hiring a new staff or diversifying the current staff. In the past, they rarely featured a black man on the cover unless he was a major star (MEN’S Health is also guilty of this) weary not to offend subscribers who were often more used to seeing no named white male models on the cover in GQ’s history of publishing.


If this is still their target that’s fine but understand when you do put a black man from on the cover and you have writers do the story who are removed from the culture, this is what happens. GQ has learned this lesson the hard way.

The publication recently featured rapper Kendrick Lamar on the cover obviously aware of his quantum leap in celebrity because of his recent verse on “.” The magazine dressed Lamar up and put him on the cover then insulted him as well as all of hip hop culture with a reporter for the magazine saying he was surprised at how “disciplined” Lamar and his team are, as if Lamar needed a leash while being photographed. He made an even greater insult by saying… “Kendrick doesn’t smoke weed or drink booze. In the time I spent with him, I never witnessed anyone roll even the thinnest spider leg of a jay (joint), nor did I see Kendrick so much as glance at the many, many girls around him.”  The reporter was trying to sound like he had his ear to the street instead of his foot in his mouth.

Fortunately, Lamar and executives at his label, , did not take the observation as a “compliment.” Indeed, it was a insult with racial overtones. Had they had any black writers in the editorial department for this feature, they would have been warned to cut that part out of the story. As a result, Lamar refused to attend the GQ Men of the Year party and pick up his top rapper honor last week. Other sources covering the mishap state GQ is miffed by Lamar’s response as if to say ‘what’s the problem?’ KUDOS to Kendrick and his team for taking a stand.  Unfortunately, we are not confident many other rappers would have done the same thing as Lamar.

GQ’s Editor Jim Nelson (pictured) Responded:

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66 COMMENTS

  1. Hey GQ, I just spent time with a white male and not once did he refer to serial killing his neighbors, doing crystal meth or cheating on his taxes…not once! Now that is real discipline!

  2. not a big deal at all. i cant believe an emcee working in the hip-hop game in 2013 could possibly be offended by those observations. i am a black man who grew up on hip-hop and i am not in the least bit offended. what offends me more, however, is hip-hop in 2013.

    • I agree! What are the bulk of rappers portraying: spoof-worthy buffoonery, weed smoking and verbally abusing women! Why are people acting like rappers don’t do this!? Rapping and hip-hop are so much more than this and not all rappers do this, but the bulk of them do! The writer should be COMMENDED for pointing out that Kendrick is not like these rappers! He knows the prejudices many of GQ’s readers have against rappers, and he’s setting the standard! Keeping his audience in mind and exposing readers to information they didn’t know! Not smoking or drinking is something Kendrick Lamar boasts about in his raps! It’s one thing he claims sets him apart as “the wise one” amongst his rapping peers! Commenting on this, the reader is exposing his knowledge of the subject of his article! The writer should be applauded and no one should take offense to this.

  3. Good for Kendrick! However, your argument that GQ’s covers feature no named white models vs. only black men who are big stars is completely false. Perhaps if your editor actually read the magazine, or even done a quick Google search, they would’ve found that ALL of the people featured on their covers are big stars.

  4. Its offensive and unfortunate that GQ would allow such publications To go out and also that the individual has been trained to sesee circumstance. However its not appaling for him to be surprised. If all you see is rappers partying drinking having sex and cursing, wouldnt you think thats how they behave. We dont call them actors do we? Weneed to stop playing victim to a situationwe are perpetuating. Offensive or not its a good gauge on the effectiveness and message of our music.

  5. None of the comments mentioned by this article have any racial overtones at all. The writer was surprised that Kendrick was tame, not high, and not covered in women because that is what he and other rappers rap about. Other black men have been on the cover of GQ and nobody wrote about the lack of drugs or profanity. That sort of conduct is expected from rappers, not black people. The majority of rappers happen to be black, yes, but GQ didn’t make that connection, this article did. Stop trying to make everything into racial issues so that you can point a finger.

    • Kendrick’s lyrics spell out very clearly that he doesnt smoke weed or drink really in a number of his songs. For god’s sake his album title is GOOD KID, MAAD CITY,,,,,GOOD KID!!! Why would the writer not expect a good kid??? He expected these things from Kendrick because he and his crew are young and black regardless if he said it or wrote it. It was an interview with GQ, a major corporate brand he was being professional as would any mature adult. If they had interviewed a porn star would they expect them to get naked and try to fuck people during the interview??? I dont think so. If the writer looked at him as an individual instead of lumping him in with every other young black rapper, he should have no expectations at all if the two never met.

  6. ok. as a young black man, I can say that ive always had a GQ subscription. Ive always liked GQ because of its fashion, but ALWAYS more so because of its progressivism and outreach to culture beyond wall street or white culture as THIS article claims. Ive ALWAYS seen black people on its cover and in its pages. And this was WAAY before Barack Obama.

    to the article itself. Ive loved hip-hop since big daddy kane. (rant: whodini deserves way more credit than they get). ive also seen the culture shift to what it is today and it glorifies drugs and women. that’s what rappers are known for is smoking weed and fin hoes. these are also habits that im not above. perhaps the writers observation didn’t need to be omitted since it points out the contrast between dude’s habits and the culture itself because it speaks to what helps to make this rapper special. perhaps dude could’ve done more homework on Kendrick lamar and it may be no secret that dude doesn’t drink or smoke, but keep in mind that the point of writing the article isn’t so that the writer can inform himself, its so that he can inform others. gq is not a hip hop magazine, its a fashion magazine and its readership may not all have listened to kendricks album or love hip hop, but i bet you they all have an opinion on the culture that might sound something like “all they do is glorify drugs and hoes”. i bet you he/she would have to look at it differently after reading the article on Kendrick.

  7. kevRoss, though you started a great argument be mindful that your linking of this, shall we say, editorial “slip” to only being identified had they had a black staff member still encourages the marginalization that is going. It’s not a question of black people looking out for black people’s interests, it has to be people as a whole (the DIVERSIFYING tip is for sure key) looking out for people as a whole.

  8. I don’t see a racial undertone in what was written. It had to do with him being a rapper in which the subculture constantly portray themselves as thuggish and unprofessional. They could have been featuring Eminem and it would still evoked the same shock and response due to the contradictory actions of the rapper. The fact that race was brought into debate is disturbing to me as it was not mentioned in the article. In this context, racism is produced by the reader whom chooses to view the article through a racial perspective. By taking this perspective you are attributing stereotypes that are meant for rappers onto black people which only reinforces racism and the validity of the stereotypes associated with being black.

  9. What are the bulk of rappers portraying: spoof-worthy buffoonery, weed smoking and verbally abusing women! Why are people acting like rappers don’t do this!? Rapping and hip-hop are so much more than this and not all rappers do this, but the bulk of them do! The writer should be COMMENDED for pointing out that Kendrick is not like these rappers! He knows the prejudices many of GQ’s readers have against rappers, and he’s setting the standard! Keeping his audience in mind and exposing readers to information they didn’t know! Not smoking or drinking is something Kendrick Lamar boasts about in his raps! It’s one thing he claims sets him apart as “the wise one” amongst his rapping peers! Commenting on this, the reader is exposing his knowledge of the subject of his article! The writer should be applauded and no one should take offense to this.

    -AVID Kendrick Lamar fan, South Central Los Angeles resident, USC Economics, BA recipient candidate (May 2014), rap and hip-hop music enthusiasts

      • Qualifying your statement with “AVID Kendrick Lamar fan” and “rap and hip-hop music enthusiasts” does not make you an expert on anything but liking a particular artist or genre. And it clearly does not mean that you understand anything about the nuances of veiled racism. This is directly in line with Bill O’Reilly’s comment about Sylivia’s in harlem where he said: “”I couldn’t get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia’s restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean, it was exactly the same, even though it’s run by blacks, primarily black patronship.” It betrays the whole notion of white America’s “civilized negro” complex. The fact that you don’t seem to grasp that concept perhaps put you in line with that majority? Also, noting the fact that you are about to receive a BA in Economics means what, exactly? That you have been to college? I know many, many people that have been to college that are still racists, friend. O’Reilly went to Harvard. You need to bone up on your social theory before someone hands you a diploma….

        • I am not an expert, nor did I EVER claim to be one. Quoting that I was a hip hop fan and Kendrick Lamar fan and from LA was to support the claims I made about his music and what he is known for! It is obviously easy to allege the author was being racist! If there was any speculation to this, there’d be no backing for THIS article online here that we are commenting on! I am just making the assertion that we are interpreting it wrong and are quick to pull that fucking race card! I damn well know the whole notion of white America’s “civilized negro” complex! The author of the GQ article is NOT making that assertion here! Quoting that I have a degree was not only pumping pride that I am a finally a Senior, but also supporting the fact that I am educated and not your typical LA ignorant, uneducated rap teen. Also by quoting my degree is supporting the notion that Kendrick’s audience is wide spread and appeals to gangsters and scholars alike. Even though I am not a racist, I never claimed NOT TO BE ONE with quoting my degree. Nor could you get that from my initial comment. We aren’t focused on MY racism, we’re focused on the GQ articles racism, from which I conclude are both not apparent either in this comment or in the initial argument. And “bone up on my social theory before someone hands me a diploma?” Are you serious?! You don’t know what my qualifications for receiving this degree are, nor can you gauge my knowledge of social theory.

  10. We don’t allow any mistakes in this country anymore. There is no longer any room for ignorance. Everyone is not versed in the complexities and variations of black culture. I understands TDE’s position, but I also know that before you learn, you usually make a mistake.

    • True, a way of learning is the hard way. But society is not a testing ground to prove what already existed and has been prolonged for for years. There is no excuse in allowing someone to generalize an entire culture, especially being considered as a reputable source. Its a shame that through all of the hierarchy and “expert” staff at GQ, no one has experienced or even could see how this type of racism could affect a people. The history is already completed, we don’t need another civil rights movement, to show people the effects of racism and its context.

  11. Oh please, if it was a black writer writing that nobody would’ve said a thing. and yes it IS news when a rapper is disciplined, doesn’t do drugs or weed, and doesn’t gawk @ every hot girl that passes by. You people claim to like hip hop but you all know how prevalent that is in hip hop culture. SO STOP BEING HYPOCRITES!!

  12. I read the article and, though I believe the writer was being sincere and thought he was actually complementing Kendrick Lamar, I also felt the writer was condescending (knowingly or not) and brought his stereotypes of hip hop artist/rappers in general to the party vs. dealing with Kendrick Lamar the individual artist and what he’s about, which the writer should’ve already known since he did his research prior to interviewing Kendrick Lamar. I thought ItsVex summed it up best. If you interview a porn star, you don’t expect her to get naked in front of you and start performing sex or falletio even though we all know that generally that is what porn stars do. Again, I really don’t think the writer meant to come off racists, I just am 100% sure that G.Q. does not have any African-American writers on its staff or, at best, no more than 1 and he was probably not assigned the story because he was African-American and either he didn’t want it or his bosses felt that inn order for their mostly-White readers to “get” Kendrick Lamar and hip hop culture, it had to be presented through the prism/view finder of a White writer who probably knew as little about hip hop and Kendrick Lamar as the magazine’s mostly-White readers. I have never believe in this theory. I feel that if you’re a strong, experience writer you can make any reader “get” your subject. But in the American media Black writers and journalists are sometimes punished for being Black and not given stories to do because their White bosses feel they are “too close” to the subject and will not present it in such a way that White people who are not familiar with the subject will “get it”, which is a double-stereotype in and of itself: 1.) Black writers/producers aren’t universal enough to write a story in a way that all people will understand (huge myth that is perpetuated till today in the mainstream (i.e., see White) media; and 2.) White people are so racist that they will not understand a story about a rapper like Kendrick Lamar unless they feel that he is “sanitized” and that this can only be done by a White writer because most of G.Q’s White readers could not possibly understand the story if it was presented by a Black magazine writer– none of which i believe to be true since I believe most White (and Black) people who read regularly are probably better at discerning information than those who don’t read. The biggest dead giveaway that G.Q. magazine view Kendrick Lamar differently than how they viewed the other Men of The Year they profiled (and I read all of the stories) was just by how the writer wrote this story– with all of these hip phrases and words from hip hop and street culture, some of which I had to make a phone call to find out what it meant. It was like the writer was writing in a foreign language, trying to show Kendrick and his audience how hip and cool he is (the writer) rather than just writing the same way he would write if Kendrick Lamar was a pop artist. I mean, that is irrefutable. Just read the article on Kendrick Lamar and any one of the other article on the other men of entertainment being profiled. It’s like Kendrick’s profile was written in a different language. No different than a White guy hanging out with some Black guys and trying to mimic how he thinks they talk and walk, etc. I don’t think the G.Q. writer mean to come off racist, I think he was just trying to relate. But the end result is the not only pissed off the subject he was profiling, but many in the artist’s fan base which G.Q. is trying to appeal to. I’m sure the writer feel horrible right about now and will hopefully learn from this and treat all of his subjects the same from now on.

  13. If people take the time and realize that everyone is not the same then they would sound less ignorant. Im tired of hearing ignorant ass statements like that is what rappers are known for drinking and smoking that is bullshit cayse last time i checked Lindsey Lohan did that n everything else you can name and she aint no damn rapper. Anybody with common since knows why he said what he said whether u wanna believe it or not. If he took the time out to do his research or listen to his music he would know kendrick is not that type of person but no mf want to continue to assume what they know about someome before they get to know then and you see what happens when you assume shit YOU MAKE AN ASS OUT OF YOURSELF.

  14. After reading the GQ article, I think that observation was made in context of just noting how the whole team operates like a monastic order. The tone of the article didn’t exactly try and pass it off as a compliment, but actually just a literary observation. Moreover, the “disciplined” mark was sensationalized by the author of this post; there wasn’t anything in the article that even remotely alluded to Kendrick and TDE needing to be leashed.

    Perhaps more diversity on the GQ staff might would have picked up on this, but then again, if it had been me, I wouldn’t have said anything to the contrary.

  15. Although I do not like the handling of GQ’s magazine in this issue I also do not appreciate the response that it received in this article. It feels as though radiofacts tried to talk about how bad it is to discriminate and profile…. by discriminating and profiling.

    “The mistake MANY of these magazines, who have previously ignored urban culture, make is failing to COMPLETELY alter the perception by HIRING A NEW STAFF or DIVERSIFYING the current staff… If this is their target that’s fine but understand when you do put a black man on the cover and have writers do the story who are removed from the culture, this is what happens. GQ has learned this lesson the hard way.”

    radiofacts makes it seem like if magazine companies don’t do things exactly like they say then they are not trying hard enough or doing it correctly. GQ is not off the hook with their comments but there is no ‘book on urban culture’ so GQ as well as other companies do not have to take the steps described in radiofacts in order to appeal more to the urban culture. Hiring more people of color is the same as saying that Caucasians cannot live urban lifestyles and only minorities can. “Only black people know about urban lifestyles so they need to hire a black person to watch over them as they type all of their articles” is basically the summary of this article.

    GQ is promoting discrimination, but radiofacts is guilty of the same thing.

    If you want to end discrimination stop sinking to their levels and discriminating against them. Rate a companies performance on their goals and how they achieved them and stop trying to imply if they were ‘diverse’ or ‘black’ enough in their responses.

  16. Racism doesn’t alays show up in front of your house wearing a white sheet and burning a cross on your lawn at 3 in the morning. Most of the time it’s alot more subtle than that. In the article the writer also refers to the CEO of Kendricks’s label TDE as being the equivalent of Suge Knight. Really? Suge Knight? Why? Because he owns a west coast based hip-hop record label? Gee, that’s SO original.If GQ had really took the the time to do some actual journalism for this piece they would already know that Kendrick is an intelligent, articulate and somwhat introverted individual who does not indulge. So why would they come into the interview expecting throngs of groupies and endless blunts instead of an intropective young writer? Kendrick and his crew are paid entertainers that spend countless hours in the studio recording, doing press and performing. It’s a job. Duuuuh! Of course they would have to adhere to some degree of discipine. These people get paid to tell stories and to a certain degree become a character. If they were interviewing Bruce Willis would they expect him to show up sweaty and bloody in a soiled “wife beater” talking about “yippy kye yah mufucka!” ? No. GQ made the mistake of expecting a stereotype, one that is not the protoype for every hip-hop artist even in 2013 still. If GQ was REALLY down or trully cared about hip-hop culture they would know this. I highly doubt a rock or pop musician would’ve gotton the same condescending treatment. The party lifestyle is not the sole domain of hip-hop artist. Many entertainers period have been known to engage in such trappings of fame. Race comes into play because writers don’t alude to these things automatically with White entertainers. They usually just come in inteview said entertaier and observe OBJECTICALLY without coloring the piece with their own biases especially article that is supposed to be bestowing certain honor or respect upon it’s subject.

  17. I just want to know, honestly, how do you expect to integrate a culture into your product when you haven’t integrated that culture into your business? Like you can’t POSSIBLY think you know so much about a group of people and the nuances of language, social interaction, etc. that they deem acceptable and unacceptable to such an extent that you don’t think you need anyone of that group on your side to speak to those nuances. I mean isn’t that an intended byproduct of diversity? I thought the point was for all people to respect and attempt to understand each other. Clearly GQ didn’t get the memo.

  18. If you think commenting on how a RAPPER hadn’t rolled a Jay, drank liquor, or chatted up a woman is RACIST.. you may want to re-evaluate how you see BLACK PEOPLE

  19. Yeah, I don’t understand the offense here. They just made an observation, a true one at that. Have you ever seen a rap, r&b, or hip-hop music video. Filled with drugs, women, promiscuity all around. So, yes, the have the right to be “surprised” .He should be honored that they do not put him in the same category as the rest of them.

  20. CHOZN BRAVESOUL,
    You sound like an idiot, and whether I agree with Mr. Lamars ‘ decision I will always support standing up for what you believe is right. #standforsomethingorfallforanything

  21. Chozn Bravesoul, no one claimed he was rapping Plato. And since this seems to be the basis of your argument, you should know, there’s a certain level of commercialization to every rapper’s game (see Kanye circa “Graduation” to now). No one is trying to deify Kendrick and say that he’s changed the rap game by spitting via the Socratic Method. What they’re saying is GQ’s article had clear offense, racial tones and in response, TD chose not to show up to demonstrate their dissent. Additionally, if you listen across the span of his albums, you’d get a better sense of “how he presents himself”, not just from a superficial listen to GKMC. Finally, in today’s age, a rapper’s worth is unfortunately not based on rapping what the strong leaders of my race preached. So that’s not a valid bar to judge any rapper on. You telling people they’re stupid for being offended is as offensive as your lack of proper grammar. Gq’s article tops that though.

    Now, Mike Wallace, though well intentioned, your comment is ignorant as well. It’s not for you to imply that every African American should be offended by this article. Or assume based on one’s opinion what their race might be. See where this is going?

    All in all, though the author’s tone is a bit off, it’s an interesting article but I can only golf-applaud TDE for not attending. A no-show is a bit of a cop out. If they were truly “bout that life”, they’d use the article as a platform to highlight one of the major problems with our media outlets.

    Peace & Love

  22. And after it all this SENIOR editor is making a fuss about not being able to see Kendrick perform. That’s the real tragedy huh?

    get real. ugh. again white privilege has masked the real issue to be discussed.

  23. He clearly stated that he was a fan as well, So a fan shouldnt be surprised by someones actions if its something they live by and have stated in many interviews… I was under the impression that most reporters do their research in order to have accurate and respectful journalism. People black or white should be offend by something so irrelevant to his success if they’re true fans.. When someone chooses to stand out from the crowd due to bad experiences, they shouldn’t be made a joke out of… He could have said it differently to commenmorate him… Not say oh im surprise.. Did he expect him to eat chicken and drink promethazine as well?smh maybe someone should tame him…

  24. Kendrick is more of a racist than the reporter. He is looking at what that is being said about him in bad manner when he needs grown the fuck up and know he is not like other rappers and that is an AMAZING way to appear to the public.

  25. Most rappers smoke and hook up w/ ladies. White/black/hispanic doesn’t matter. It’s about his career choice. Rappers should be offended perhaps, but not black people. Unless you’re saying all rappers are black… #hypocrite

  26. Actually if all you have to go on is pool full of liquor then you don’t know what you are talking about Kendrick lamer certainly does rap Malcom x he is no fool your referring to one song but the man has plenty of wonderful material out there that would leave a listener shook I’m highly disappointed at how short sighted your being in this post racists society we call America big up to Kendrick.

  27. I must say, I believe it is necessary for everyone to take a step back and complete ones perspective on the matter (meaning take into consideration all extreme ends of this specific situation). It is not too difficult to acknowledge people; the undertone of the article is obviously suggestive to stereotypes. Although, these stereotypes like most stereotypes are not formulated from thin air; referring to the racial perspective stereotypes are a result of the existing percentage of any ethnicity that conducts him or herself ignorantly—I’d say that is usually roughly around 85% of any persons pertaining to any ethnical group. Furthermore, referring to this “rapper” regards to this topic, as “Chozn Bravesoul” so abruptly stated, Kendrick raps about “ignorant shit”. No surprise to me, and there should be no surprise to anyone including Kendrick & Top Dawg Entertainment that this reporter was “surprised” to find Kendrick’s behavior to be hypocritical to his rhymes (I mean come on most of these poser rappers, aren’t as “real” as they rap they are..) All in all, Kendrick and Top Dawg made a stand against GQ and their more than likely attempt to expand their commerce, GREAT—but it should be a lesson to “Keep it Real”

  28. How could someone possibly assume a rapper would smoke weed or ogle women? Surely this doesn’t have anything to do with 20 plus years of rappers putting out songs and music videos of themselves smoking weed and ogling women.

  29. What he says on the album has no more bearing on who he is than the parts actors play in movies. So it doesn’t matter what he raps. a Neilson survey recently recorded black Americans representing three TRILLION dollars in purchasing power. GQ is just trying to get some of that money. I am black and grew up in the ghetto; I don’t even smoke cigarettes! It was an ignorant comment and GQ SHOULD apologize!

  30. Rappers cant rap about it and be viewed as such, but actors can act the part and get a pass? it’s all entertainment… Why cant people just view it as such.. Rambo and Terminator killed a million people collectively, but rapper says kill and the world’s ills are his fault…lol..

  31. Somebody wrote this

    “not a big deal at all. i cant believe an emcee working in the hip-hop game in 2013 could possibly be offended by those observations. i am a black man who grew up on hip-hop and i am not in the least bit offended. what offends me more, however, is hip-hop in 2013.”

    And I totally agree!! Why get offended when that’s the norm for hip hop artist…that’s silly…

  32. Go Kendrick! I feel as if, media wants to represent African Americans under the guise that we’re all set to do “ratchet” things. Honestly, most people in general are level headed and WANT to be represented that way. If no one understands why Kendrick isn’t offended, actually listen to his album and see the kind of life he had to lead, what his regrets were, what it was like to be an African American in this society. I would have boycotted that party as well, it’s not like GQ listed that any of its other cover models were on anything, taking anything or acting foolish on the set.

  33. white people talk about people getting offended easily , its not about getting offended bitch its about being respected . You see how looking at it from a different perspective changes the meaning of the offense , you people can wake up be white and have no issues …….with looking or being white…. we wake up black and just by waking up some white person is offended by our existence…. were not offended mufucka we just want yall to keep our names , skin color , and culture out ya mouth !

  34. This article is ridiculous. Obviously he was contrasting Kendrick vs. other rappers, not against other black folks. There is still plenty of racism out there, but must we write race into everything rather than focusing on places that need true justice? Mr. Ross, I know that your job depends on the number of views you receive, the number of eyeballs that read your column, and an article about how Kendrick Lamar is being discriminated against will get them, but couldn’t you use your platform to call for justice where it’s really needed?

  35. If you diversify your contacts you WILL experience patronizing “compliments” from otherwise well meaning people. Most intend to make a positive connection to you that has fallen flat. For example “Rob, you are so articulate!” and “You are so well mannered…”

    When I was young I would respond as if challenged by saying a variation of “As opposed to what?” or “Of course I am articulate I am an educated man”

    As I have mellowed with age I listen for the spirit in which the comment is meant and try to bring the speaker up to speed on how their complement could create insult to another listener.

    I also think remember the times I have similarly insulted others with comments I have made that were just as patronizing (sexist/racist/elitist) and just as well intended.

    Well done Kendrick, I appreciate the chance to raise the dialogue.

  36. I am honestly lost. You work in a field full of debauchery. You made a song talking about diving in a pool full of liquor and you are offended when they make a reference to what you portray in you lyrics? I am befuddled…
    The Disciplined thing… Ok maybe that was a little on the unneeded side of things, but everyone has their opinion on how they want to be approached and portrayed. Still amazed my you lyrics Kendrick and best of luck to you.

  37. I’m offended not because I’m black but because it’s wrong to make assumptions about ppl based on what is portrayed on tv. Yes hip hop has fallen since the 80’s and 90’s but society has too. Ppl rap about what’s real to them. There are plent of “concious” rappers out there but do you hear their music in heavy rotation? Besides that maybe its ok for me to say “I visited my white friends and not once did they curse at their moms, offer me pumpkin pie, smell like a wet dog or threaten to kill me if I messed up his world of war craft game that’s real discipline.” Ppl don’t know things because they chose to not know. Miley cirus is crazy as hell (love her music) but you don’t see the editor of “sister to sistor” or “ebony” write an article about her and say “not once did she twerk or stick her tongue out, roll a joint or scream. That real discipline. Yhe comments were border line tasteless

  38. then they add insult to injury by continuing to be negative saying they were mystified and disappointed rather than apologizing and taking the time to learn what their mistake was and build a dialogue so it won’t happen again but to also learn how their operation can be diversified so they can be TRUE to this move and not look like opportunist looking to make an extra dollar.

  39. chozen bravesoul, he pretty much IS rapping malcolm x and frederick douglas. Its actually widely known by Kendrick supporters that he doesn’t drink or smoke. And the song “swimming pools” about a “pool full of liquor” is a satire. Perhaps you should actually listen to his music. It has more religious undertones than “street” ones.

  40. Maybe if these wack ass rappers quit personifying that wack ‘gangsta’ image, then maybe, just maybe, none of us, would be shocked when they act ‘normal.’ A black writer isn’t necessary to carry on an article about some shit rapper these days. His music sucks, he has contributed not a single thing worthy of earning the title of a hip hop emcee, so who gives a shit. Of Thia were someone like the well respected KRS One, I would understand the uproar because he is an educated man with credibility in the game. This Kendrick character is just another overpaid puppet that deserves treatment like this. You get what you give. You live off the stereotype, don’t cry when you’re antics make you the top joke on a magazine cover.

  41. To be completely honest the comment made by the GQ staff was out of ignorance; however, he can’t be blamed too harshly. If you listen to much of rap music that is popular within our culture those are the topics being promoted. I don’t think it’s so much of a “black” thing, but rather a “rap” thing. If the person who did this interview is someone who only knows what they hear on the radio then he was speaking out of ignorance and not knowing the whole truth of Kendrick’s music. Consequently, I feel that this should just show us what the public thinks of hip hop due to the mass stupidity we hear on the radio. Kendrick Lamar is a great MC…but I don’t think this guy actually listened to an album before speaking.

  42. Honestly my first inclination when I read the article was that they were making those points because he is in the music industry, not because he is black. Rock/rap/anything stars, especially young ones, have a tendency to party hard, and they cultivate that image (Kendrick included, he talks a lot about it!). It was probably refreshing to see a young musician come in and act like a pro, take his work very seriously and show that he is above getting caught up in that scene.

    It is easy to bring race into a lot of things. I love Kendrick and it’s too bad he felt that they were marginalizing him, but I gotta say the thoughts of ‘racism’ never crossed my mind on this one….

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