Music

Elton John Was ‘Shocked’ By DaBaby’s HIV Comments, Saying Misinformation Fuels Stigma

DaBaby’s comments during his controversial Rolling Loud set in Miami this weekend continue to draw reactions from every corner of the entertainment industry. After Dua Lipa, his collaborator on the hit song “Levitating,” said she was “surprised and horrified” by his words, queer rights icon and living legend Elton John has chimed in to address the harm DaBaby’s statements could cause, whether intentional or not.

John’s official Twitter account, which doubles as the account for his Elton John AIDS Foundation, pointed out how statements like DaBaby’s can “fuel stigma and discrimination,” calling them “the opposite of what our world needs to fight the AIDS epidemic.” You can read the full statement below.

We’ve been shocked to read about the HIV misinformation and homophobic statements made at a recent DaBaby show. This fuels stigma and discrimination and is the opposite of what our world needs to fight the AIDS epidemic.

The facts are:

HIV has affected over 70 million people globally: men, women, children, and the most vulnerable people in our communities.

In America, a gay black man has a 50% lifetime chance of contracting HIV. Stigma and shame around HIV and homosexuality is a huge driver of this vulnerability. We need to break down the myths and judgments and not fuel these.

You can live a long and healthy life with HIV. Treatment is so advanced that with one pill a day, HIV can become undetectable in your body so you can’t pass it onto other people.

Homophobic and HIV mistruths have no place in our society and industry and as musicians, we must spread compassion and love for the most marginalized people in our communities.

A musician’s job is to bring people together.

DaBaby responded to the backlash a few times, noting that it wasn’t his intent to insult anyone, but unfortunately, he seems to have missed the possible unintended harm that resulted from his comments. In addition, online retailer Boohooman ended its partnership with him, while him bringing Tory Lanez onstage could have legal repercussions for the Canadian rapper. All in all, not DaBaby’s best week — although he seems to be taking it all in stride.

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