Nicki Minaj, get your hands out Malcom X’s pocket! The deceased political leader has had many leeches feed off his photos and motivational quotes. “Hoodwinked, bamboozled, run a muck,” keywords brought to the minds forefront regarding Minaj’s actions. Gearing up for the release of the song Lookin a** n***a, Minaj decided to rendezvous the song with a photo of Malcom X. The photo is a staple in Civil Rights history, documenting when Malcom X left the Nation of Islam and was receiving death threats. The image captures Malcom X clutching a rifle and brazenly leering out the window stashing his body away from harm. Inserted in the left upper corner of the artwork illustration was the rapper’s first and last name and the name of her song.
Consequently, the title and lyrical content can not even loosely be compared to fighting for life, political equality, or freedom. Even manipulating the modern day consistent use of the N-word through out music does not justify pairing it to Malcom X. The devout civil rights activist has left a certain endowment for not only his family, but a nation. Malcom X’s daughter, Ilyasah Shabazz stated, “Her single does not depict the truth of Malcolm X’s legacy, is completely disrespectful, and in no way is endorsed by my family.” Now Nicki Minaj can not get her hands out of Malcom X’s pockets fast enough. The rapper has retracted the photo and explained the artwork photo was not official nor was it the single. Minaj feels the artwork has been misconstrued and apologized to the Malcom X estate.
The “first lady” of cash money rendered the explanation that the phrase is referring to the enemies Malcom X is watching for. A clever way to snatch excessive buzz in regard to up-coming music that will soon be released. Minaj seems to not only cross lines but incinerate them and ask what line? Attempting to profit off the image by connecting it to an N-word layered bonanza is asinine.
Malcom X represents the fight for civil liberties and perseverance. Minaj using this vehicle to drive offensive gestures is not shocking. The appalling action is not knowing the consequences when a certain level of success has been achieved. The portrayl of being surprised about a backlash when lacing civil rights leaders with the N-word. A short rendition of transformation from criminal to world scholar would have sufficed.
One of the most powerful influential leaders to ever exist should not be linked to the N-word for profit. Nicki Minaj’s hands need to get out of Malcom X’s pockets and stay out. Just as “Get your hands out of my pockets” was a diversion to assassinate a leader, Nicki Minaj is using the photo artwork as a diversion to assassinate our intelligence. Change.org petitions circulating is not a notch under the belt of rebelliousness; it is a shameful act that should feel remorse. Though this was not a deliberate cover shot defacing the monumental photo with the N-word is just disrespectfully demoralizing on astronomical levels.
Editorial By Ebony Waller