Nicki Minaj has issued an apology regarding her new music video for the track Only, which features a significant amount of Nazi-like imagery and militaristic themes. Upon its VEVO release last week, the rapper has faced an enormous amount of public shame and scrutiny for the media clip, which has since been taken down off of YouTube in video form (the audio for the song is still readily available.)
The most prominent of the aforementioned Nazi themes the video portrays lies with an altered version of the Young Money record label symbol, which was twisted around with the result that it resembled a swastika. There are also multiple Third Reich influenced sections of the video, something that the Anti-Defamation League has been very vocal regarding their extreme discontent with. National director Abraham H. Foxman gave a statement yesterday in which he put Minaj’s video on blast, calling it both offensive and deeply disturbing. He went on to express his view that pop culture exploited Nazi propaganda in order to invoke shock value and admiration for daring, and that the 31-year-old’s latest video brought said culture to an all-time low in regards to their level of respect for such things. He believes the video is extremely insensitive and insulting to Holocaust survivors, and pulls out all the stops in an effort to make that time period seem trivial and meaningless.
Minaj took to Twitter early Tuesday morning to issue a public apology towards whomever the video may have offended, stating that she takes full responsibility regarding any hurt feelings or upset the media clip has caused, and that she would never purposefully condone Nazism. She did also state that the theme for the video was not her idea to begin with, although she went on to state that this was no excuse and that she took full blame regardless. The statement that the video was not envisioned by her is in fact true, and the director released a statement just hours after her apology in which he detailed his intent to in no way apologize for any offense the music video has caused since its release.
Jeffrey Osborne gave a statement to MySpace in which he insisted he has absolutely no regrets regarding how the clip was filmed and the imagery that was portrayed within. He admitted that several portions of the video were representatives of Nazi’s, but went on to say that this in no way meant he was going to say he was sorry for a creative decision he made. He in turn took full responsibility for said imagery and likeness, saying that his work was in no representative of Minaj, her label Young Money, or any of the other artists that appeared in Minaj’s video (these included Drake, Lil’ Wayne, and Chris Brown.)
Drake having a role in the video has started a discussion of its own, in regards to the anti-Semitism the video has been accused of portraying. The Canadian rapper is said to be of Jewish faith, something that fans have raised as a defense towards Minaj and her intentions with the imagery. The Trinidad & Tobago native is also said to be in a relationship with a Jewish man, something that she herself gave as a reason to why she never meant any harm regarding the video. Drake has yet to give any statement regarding his feelings towards the video or the treatment Minaj has been subject to since its release.
It remains to be seen whether the Anti-Defamation league and/or the Jewish community will accept Nicki Minaj’s apology regarding the suggested Nazi imagery in her newest music video. No officials in either have yet to give a statement towards whether they will forgive the rapper.
By Rebecca Grace