Vince Staples’ Eminem And Redman Comparison Sparked A Debate About Race And Aging In Hip-Hop

Hip-Hop Editor
10.16.17 85 Comments

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Even for rappers, Twitter can be a curse as much as a gift. Vince Staples found that out on Saturday when he shared his opinion on Eminem’s buzz-worthy, much-discussed BET Hip-Hop Awards, anti-Donald Trump freestyle: It sucked.

He was quickly deluged by responses from angry fans who tried to defend Em’s screed while also denouncing Vince himself as nowhere near Eminem’s level, both commercially (true) and lyrically (debatable). Vince Staples is, however, a tad bit more social media savvy than many of his contemporaries, and engaged with the Eminem defenders (and race trolls) who accosted him with his usual laidback, sardonic demeanor and surprisingly insightful witticisms.

I won’t rehash the “white privilege” discussion, because I’ve already done that, nor do I want to focus on how Vince deftly pointed to the many, many, many protest songs that had to be overlooked to assign all the hyperbolic praise Eminem received to that verse, because I hit that one too. Instead, I noticed one of Vince’s points not only perfectly summed up his argument, but also touched on a larger issue in hip-hop as well.

In response to his own supporter who tweeted that “If Eminem was black he wouldn’t be regarded anywhere near the top 10 all time,” Vince pointed out that “If Eminem was black he would be Redman. I love them both very much.”

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