Tuesday, December 25, 2018

A Superstar's Superstar. And Something Else.


On Monday, Huffington Post reported

The Los Angeles Lakers star apologized Sunday for sharing a “getting that Jewish money” lyric from the rap song “asmr” by 21 Savage.

“We been getting that Jewish money / Everything is Kosher,” (LeBron) James typed onto his Instagram story entry.

“Entourage” producer Doug Ellin and others online took offense, informing the superstar that the words reinforced a harmful stereotype.

In his mea culpa, James said he thought the words were positive.

Consideration of the posting of LeBron James, superstar of the Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers and now of of the Los Angeles Lakers, would not be fair without context. If the lyrics from the entire song were generally profound or at least inoffensive, quoting the artist might be reasonable. Therefore, consider....


Intro]
Y'all know what's goin' on
21 Gang 'til I'm gone
4L Gang 'til I'm gone
If Young Metro don't trust you, I'm gon'-

[Verse 1]
Roll the window down, stick the Glock out (Stick the Glock out)
This chopper got a AMP, I'ma rock out (I'ma rock out)
When it's time for smoke, they gon' cop out (They gon' cop out)
This AK47 made in Moscow (Made in Moscow)
All these dead bodies got me seein' strange things (Straight up)
Both sides of the gun, I done dealt and felt the pain (On God)
Drive by? Nah, we the walk-up gang (21)
I come from the 6 where they chalk up lames (On God)
Slide in and out (Out)
Spend the night? I doubt (Doubt)
Gold grill mouth (Mouth)
I come from the South (South)
We was stealin' cars
You was inside the house (Pussy)
I know he gon' be a rat one day
Right now we call him a mouse (21)

[Chorus]
I got lots of stripes, all my niggas shyst
You can roll the dice, you might lose your life
Keep my Desert Eagle on me, he not nothin' nice
I just need one Glock, Nas need one mic (Lil' bitch)

[Verse 2]
I done did a lot in the streets and them facts (21)
PTSD like I came from Iraq (On God)
You made it from the gutter, then I'm tippin' my hat (I am)
Don't go big on me, you might get hit with this MAC (Brrah)
I don't need no holster, you get burned like toaster (21)
I don't drink no liquor, but I'm smokin' on mimosa (Yeah)
We been gettin' that Jewish money, everything is Kosher (On God)
Bought myself a 'Ventador and bought my bitch a Roadster(Straight up)
Drive my Lambo to the store, I'ma wave with my doors
I'm on Glenwood, not the Ave., nigga, the road (21)
Talkin' on the pillow, nigga, that shit for the hoes (Straight up)
I'd never snitch on my enemies or my bros (Never)
I'm so 21, dawg, I'm so SG (Yeah)
I'm so 4L Gang, I keep a Glock, not a XD (21)
Head so good, she not even white, I still call her Becky (Yeah, yeah)
Richard Mille cost so much I could push a button and see next week (Straight up)
.30 on the glizzy, got my pants dizzy (Pants dizzy)
Playin' 'round with Savage, you get shot in the kidney (Shot in the kidney)
So many drums, he gon' think a band hit him (Ha)
Chopper clapped his ass, he thought a hand hit him (Ha)
I do the BlocBoy JB on a brick (Skrrt, skrrt)
Make your crew do the Electric Slide with this stick (Straight up)
She don't get no new Chanel, she gon' throw a fit (Straight up)
I wanna buy that girl the world, the way she suck this dick (Yeah)
Fronted me some bags, I ran out the same night (Damn)
When I was in jail, on my momma, I ain't kite (Damn)
Niggas know I'm solid, I shoot and I fight (Straight up)
You just wear Adidas, but in real life, I got stripes (21)

[Chorus]
I got lots of stripes, all my niggas shyst
You can roll the dice, you might lose your life
Keep my Desert Eagle on me, he not nothin' nice
I just need one Glock, Nas need one mic

[Outro]
My brother down the road, they tried to give him life
He swear he so creative, turned a toothbrush to a knife
Savage got your wifey playin' with herself on Skype
She thought the AC was on, it was just my ice
We pull up ready to shoot (Brrrah)
Y'all ready to fight (Stupid)
Pull up, ready to kill (Yeah)
Y'all ready to die (Straight up)
Broke-ass nigga get killed ridin' a bike (Pussy)
Savage left his gun at home, nigga, yeah, right (Ha)

On a positive note, King James did not post the lyrics

We pull up ready to shoot (Brrrah)
Y'all ready to fight (Stupid)
Pull up, ready to kill (Yeah)
Y'all ready to die (Straight up)
Broke-ass nigga get killed ridin' a bike (Pussy)
Savage left his gun at home, nigga, yeah, right (Ha)

The NBA was wise not to take action against the athlete for an action, properly protected from state sanction by the First Amendment, taken on the field for a matter unrelated to performance on the court.

However, the NBA's decision was taken instead because of who took it- King James, indisputably the best player in all of basketball and one of the league's half dozen greatest players of all time.

The league evidently has elected to claim that it is letting bygones be bygones because James has allegedly apologized. Unsurprisingly, because he is King James and real apologies are nearly extinct (a tremendous exception here), it was no apology.

The "mea culpa" cited by Huffington Post included....

"Apologies, for sure;" i.e., "whatever." 

James continued" if I offended anyone."  There is no "if," fella.

He added "That’s not why I chose to share that lyric," as if anyone is accusing him of going out of his way to alienate fans and others and sullying his favorable reputation. Doing so would have been remarkably stupid.

"I always [post lyrics]. That’s what I do. I ride in my car, I listen to great music, and that was the byproduct of it." That would be "don't blame me- it was accidental. It's great music, and the controversial lyrics blend in."

"So I actually thought it was a compliment, and obviously it wasn’t through the lens of a lot of people. My apologies. It definitely was not the intent, obviously, to hurt anybody.” 

He "thought it was a compliment." To be fair, the man lauded by many people (a notable exception being the President of the USA) for being intelligent may actually have believed "we been gettin' that Jewish money, everything is Kosher" is a "compliment."

If he did so, Mr. James is not nearly as smart as he has been held up to be. Ultimately, there are exactly two possibilities- James is fairly unintelligent or he is a bigot. As for me, I never have believed, and still do not believe, that LeBron James is at all stupid.









No comments:

No Time For Neutrality

On Thursday, Joy Behar asked her fellow panelists (co-hosts? conversationalists?) on The View ... and his claim about having to &...