Rapper Murs Addresses Hip-Hop Homophobia, Kisses Man in Music Video
California Rapper Sends Message With New Video
Just weeks after a famed singer bravely told the story of his previous relationship with another man, a California emcee is addressing the homophobia that runs rampant in hip-hop culture. Rapper Murs of California, has released his “Animal Style” video telling the story of Roderick, a closet homosexual teen who falls in love with another boy. Viewers see Roderick struggle to keep his sexuality under wraps from his disapproving friends, before a surprise ending flips the script completely.
“Animal Style is a song I did for many reasons,” explained Murs in a written statement. “The first was to be an advocate for people close to me who are out, and those who have yet to come out. It’s also a love song, which is nothing new for me. But with this one I wanted to challenge the listener to ask themselves: Is the love shared by two people of the same gender, really that different than the love I have for my partner of the opposite sex?”
Murs also added that he wanted to do the controversial video to call out his genre of artists in particular while addressing other issues that are often ignored. “And finally, I just felt it was crucial for some of us in the hip-hop community to speak up on the issues of teen suicide, bullying, and the overall anti-homosexual sentiment that exists within hip-hop culture,” said Murs. ” I felt so strongly about these issues and this son,g that I had to do a video that would command some attention, even if it makes some viewers uncomfortable. Even if it came at the cost of my own comfort.”
Since Murs released the video he’s been bashed by viewers offended by the portrayal of two teen boys in love . “This is the foolishness they are promoting, to cause our kids to become homos,” wrote one irate viewer about the video. “I am sorry, but it’s about time real men step up, and stop the poisoning of our next generation.” By contrast however Murs has also received support from people praising his bravery. “I didn’t know about this guy until just now, and I’m glad I found out about him,” wrote one supporter on Youtube. ” ‘Bout to go check out his other music! This is brave, the fact of the matter is a lot of these rappers are undercover homosexuals!”
“Animal Style” comes just a few weeks after Frank Ocean of Odd Future fame revealed his bisexuality in a letter to his fans. The move came with praise and criticism alike, with some applauding his openness and others criticizing his decision to come out, especially just before the release of his debut album. Following his announcement, Ocean’s Channel Orange project was released a week earlier than expected.
Check out Murs’ “Animal Style” video below. Does it send the message that homophobia in hip-hop can’t be ignored? Or is just another example of music “poisoning our generation?” -danielle canada