Lil Wayne has been on a roll (and no, that’s not a reference to the 30-year-old’s obnoxious sudden-ish skateboard obsession). Late last year he threatened a lawyer in court over a case that, despite his display of confidence, wound up costing him $2 million. Then he hopped on the EDM train to collab with Paris Hilton, got a really dumb tattoo on his forehead, and completely botched his verse on 2 Chainz’ “Yuck.”
But all of that classlessness pales in comparison to his latest gaffe: making an obscene reference to Emmett Till, the 14-year-old boy who was kidnapped, tortured, and murdered in ’50s Mississippi after he allegedly flirted with a white woman. His killers were acquitted — a terrible sequence of events whose only positive effect was helping to ignite the Civil Rights Movement. Oh, and becoming a Weezy punchline.
Epic Records has vowed to (attempt to) scrub the Internet of the offending line, which comes in an “unauthorized remix version” of Future’s “Karate Chop.” It should be noted, however, that Tunechi is unlikely to appear on anything that hasn’t been authorized and paid a pretty penny for, so perhaps they mean to say “unapproved.” Till’s cousin Airickca Gordon-Taylor, a cousin of Emmett Till, spoke to the Chicago Sun-Times: “My agenda is not to be disrespectful to Lil Wayne, even as much as I feel he’s been disrespectful to my family. We just want Emmett’s name removed from that song,” she said, adding that his verse “shows total disregard of where you’ve come from. He wouldn’t even be out there rapping these stupid lyrics without the sacrifice Emmett made. Personally, I think Lil Wayne should just go ahead and apologize to my family.”
After the Reverend Jesse Jackson got involved, Epic issued its statement: “We regret the unauthorized remix version of Future’s ‘Karate Chop,’ which was leaked online and contained hurtful lyrics,” Yahoo reports. “Out of respect for the legacy of Emmett Till and his family and the support of the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. … we are going through great efforts to take down the unauthorized version.”
As for the line in question, it references the extreme severity of Till’s beating in regards to Lil Wayne’s own sexual prowess. But hey, don’t say Tunechi didn’t warn us with the title of his incoming album: I Am Not a Human Being II. He released a video for the March set’s “Love Me” today. A distraction tactic perhaps, but this recent news only makes the new song’s rampant misogyny extra foul.