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Common Explains Why He Decided To Never Use Homophobic Lyrics Again

Tari OteroTari Otero

Common is paraded as being a social activist who accepts people regardless of their life choices, however, over a decade ago the rapper was called out for his lyrics. He had fans who championed his causes and appreciated his cultured worldview, however, there were some in the LGBTQIA community who didn’t appreciate his choice to use homophobic terms.

On his song “Heidi Hoe” he rapped “Homo’s a no-no, so f*ggots, stay solo” and on “Dooinit” he said, “N*ggas hate you, they ain’t paying you no attention / In a circle of f*ggots, your name is mentioned.” In 2007, Common vowed to never again use words that were offensive to the LGBTQIA community, and during a recent interview with Clay Cane on SiriusXM Urban View for The Clay Cane Show, the rapper clarified the events leading up to that decision.

“Two guys who were gay came to me after a show and they said, ‘Common man, we love your music. We love your music. Your music touches us. But the fact that you using the word f*g is like, man, that hurts us,'” he recalled. “It was just like an awakening because it humanized everything that I was saying. I was only using the word ’cause it was part of a culture that I grew up in. This is what we said. I didn’t even think about what the word meant and how it was affecting other people.”

Although it was common vocabulary in the culture he was raised in, Common said he had to rise above how others around him were speaking and behaving. “I had to grow into the courage and the strength within self to be like, man, I don’t care what my homies saying. I don’t care what these cats in hip hop saying, this is where I am with it. I’m not homophobic. I embrace people who are gay, who are a Christian, Muslim, Jewish. I’m open to human beings and life. So that being said, that was a real pivotal moment for me and changing my perspective. I went on to do a song called ‘Between Me, You and Liberation,’ actually, I did that song pre-2007. I just created this story of how one of my friends told me he was gay and how I had to deal with it and grown no matter what I still loved him as my friend and I felt like that was all apart of the conversation I had with those gentlemen.”

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