Despite what Al Sharpton might think, hip-hop is not generally well-known for its tolerant outlook on the love that dare not speak its name, which makes Kanye West’s occasional limp-wristed slaps at rap homophobes almost revolutionary in a very sad way. He’s quoted in the NME as saying that he’s taken some lumps from his peers for daring to not dehumanize homosexuals, and that he meets “so many different gay people who are actually nice people” that it’s changed his outlook for the better.
“It’s being in the entertainment world, I meet so many different gay people who are actually nice people. Where I came from, Chicago, being black and being a hip-hop artist, we used to really disrespect gay people. And the thing is, we can’t get close to them with a 10-foot pole. And I realised, ‘Wow, how ignorant has this been?’”
If only other rappers could meet some nice gay folks they might actually start viewing them as people and not a punchline. Perhaps a hip-hop field trip to a gay bar is in order. Alas, Kanye’s still not totally down: “And I’m still homophobic myself to certain extent…You know, I wouldn’t go to a gay parade and feel comfortable. I wouldn’t ever to a gay club or something and just be chillin’ and grab a drink.” Aww.