The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
On July 25, the last day of the Rolling Loud music festival, well-known rapper DaBaby addressed the crowd by saying, “If you didn’t show up today with HIV, AIDS, or any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that’ll make you die in two to three weeks, then put your cell phone lighter up.”
His comments received widespread backlash and even had public responses from numerous celebrities such as Elton John and Lady Gaga. DaBaby was then dropped from several music festivals he was set to perform at, BoohooMAN severed their collab, and Kanye West even took their song together off of streaming platforms.
Firstly, DaBaby perpetuated a wrong message about HIV/AIDs that people have been trying to fight for years. HIV/AIDS does NOT kill people in two to three weeks. DaBaby used his huge platform to project wrong and harmful information that is hurtful to the LGBTQ+ community and those living with HIV/AIDs.
The next day, DaBaby made matters worse with his lackluster apology and his nonchalant attitude. He posted a video on Instagram saying, “My gay fans, they take care of themselves. They ain’t no nasty gay n—–. See what I’m saying? They ain’t no junkies in the street.”
Why is he publicly correlating HIV/AIDs to not taking care of oneself and being nasty or a junkie? He was clearly unbothered by the backlash, but instead of reflecting on his remarks, he perpetuated stigma-filled homophobia, dividing America’s gays into “good” and “nasty.”
In his second Instagram apology, DaBaby accredited his ignorant remarks to not being educated on the matter. He was wrong in what he did on that Rolling Loud stage, but he is right. Lack of awareness and education can lead to ignorant comments because you don’t know any better. Both apologies have since been removed from DaBaby’s Instagram.
During this time, DaBaby released the music video for his single “Giving What It’s Supposed to Give.”
In the video, DaBaby held up a sign that said “AIDS” while rapping, “B—-, we like AIDS, I’m on your a–, we on your b—-, we won’t go away.” The video then ended with a message written in rainbow colors, a symbol for the LGBTQ community. “Don’t Fight Hate With Hate,” it said. “My apologies for being me the same way you want the freedom to be you.”
Overall, the rapper’s comments were beyond unnecessary. DaBaby could’ve just as easily said, ‘If you’re having a good time tonight, put your flashlight in the air.’ Overall, celebrities should use their voices to promote positive messages, or if they don’t want to be positive, at least come with the correct information.
We live in a world filled with so much negativity and hate towards certain groups and intersectionalities. The last thing we need is wrong information broadcasted publicly to tear a group of people down further.