Interviews J. Cole

Published on June 11th, 2013 | by Tom Sharkey

J. Cole Explains His “Faggot” Line In Villuminati


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J. Cole’s sophomore album Born Sinner doesn’t hit stores until next Tuesday, June 18th, but the rapper has already broadcasted a live stream of the project. The response to the album has been positive, and Cole definitely has the world buzzing about his music. Cole raps about a variety of topics on Born Sinner, but a couple of lyrics from the first verse on the project have raised a few eyebrows in the hip hop world. Cole makes a reference to his lyrical ability “slaying faggots,” and the lines that follow made people question whether Cole is homophobic or whether he’s trying to make a point with his lyrics:

“My verbal AK slay faggots
And I don’t mean no disrespect whenever I say “faggot,” OK, faggot?
Don’t be so sensitive
If you want to get fucked in the ass
That’s between you and whoever else’s dick it is
Pause, maybe that line was too far
Just a little joke to show how homophobic you are
And who can blame ya?”

Even though Cole himself says that he means no disrespect with the word, many critics still questioned his motives with these lyrics. Luckily for all of the skeptics, J. Cole himself clarified the lyrics to Huffington Post:

“There will soon come a day when people in general, and rap artists specifically, are going to have to answer for their past usage of the word ‘faggot,’ much like the Grandfathers who are ashamed that they used the word ‘nigger’ as kids. At a time when public acceptance of gay rights is soaring (rightfully), hip-hop culture and general are still battling with homophobia (not excluding myself). Rather than run from it I chose to attack it playfully. Those lyrics are meant to make everyone uncomfortable for the sake of this very conversation.”

I think that although many rappers hate having to explain their lyrics, this clarification was a good move for Cole. It’s admirable that Cole chooses to be vocal about homophobia in the rap game, and even though he admits he’s not totally innocent, his speaking out on the subject is better than the status quo of ignorance about the issue. I also think Cole succeeded in his goal to “make everyone uncomfortable” about the lyrics. It’s a testament to his lyrical ability and delivery that he can start a conversation about homophobia with a few bars on a song.

Born Sinner is in stores on June 18th. 

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Tom Sharkey

Tom Sharkey is a writer and the founder of HighbrowHipHop.com, where he reports daily on the latest music and news in the hip hop world.




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