We get it. Lupe Fiasco isn’t into voting. He said it in 2011’s Lasers “Words I Never Said.” “Gaza strip was getting bombed, Obama didn’t say s—/That’s why I ain’t vote for him, next one either,” he rapped. His voice on not voting has been pretty consistent since the song dropped, whether in interviews or on Twitter. As we inch closer to the 2012 election in November a few prominent voices are taking issue with Lupe expressing his views so carelessly.
Comedian D.L. Hughley called the rapper “dumb” in a recent interview. “He’s bright as hell, but dumb in the ways of the world,” said Hughley. Lupe got wind of the comments and took to Twitter to respond. “Obama need swing states and white people not radical rappers kissing his a– to win this election,” he tweeted. “Better yet @RealDLHughley you put up 50k and I’ll put up 50k and let’s flesh out some programs for rural & inner city youths our damn selves,” he continued. D.L. Hughley never responded.
Last night CNN contributor Roland Martin wanted to get his feelings off his chest about the Chi-town rapper and tweeted a mini dissertation directly to Lupe hoping to change the super duper lyrical MC’s mind. That never happened. Lupe in turn responded by tweeting, “Yo @rolandsmartin obama ain’t gone lose cuz of me and my raps dawg…Now I’m begging you bruh bruh #LeeMeAlone or #YouGoneGetThisWork!!!” Lupe went on about a myriad of reasons he doesn’t believe in the system.
Here’s the thing: Lupe has the right to not vote. There also should be a safe space for artists and regular citizens to express their frustrations about the political system without being attacked. With that said, the rapper, whether he likes it or not, has influence on impressionable and potentially uninformed youth. There comes a responsibility with that level of fame. Whether or not Lupe himself votes doesn’t matter much to me. What does matter is that he spews accurate facts if he’s going to talk about voting. And if he advocates not voting, what are his alternative solutions? Being hellbent on taking a national platform to discourage voting seems ineffective and damaging.
Voting isn’t a mandate, it’s a right. By all means I advocate for the liberty to choose. But at the very least, I’d prefer we didn’t have to hear about his stance every two days.
[Photo: Getty Images]