Trevor Noah says rappers should release versions of their songs without N-word

Daily Show host doesn't know why some people find it so difficult to censor themselves

Jacob Stolworthy
Saturday 26 October 2019 14:24
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Trevor Noah says rappers should release version of their songs without N-word

Trevor Noah says people need to "understand the sensitivities" around saying the N-word if it's used in a song, and urged rappers to release edited versions to avoid the issue.

The host of The Daily Show was wading into the discussion after Gina Rodriguez was criticised for using the word in an Instagram video showing her rapping along to Lauryn Hill's verse in a Fugees song.

"Look, I get it. I get the confusion," Noah told Angela Yee and Charlamagne Tha God on radio show The Breakfast Club.

"In America, I understand there's a fundamental confusion that happens in and around hip hop, and some people don't understand the sensitivities that they need to have in and around words that they're using. It's not like you can't use the word – you can use it, but don't be shocked when something happens to you."

He continued: "Some people need to say to themselves, 'I grew up with hip hop. I may have identified with black culture. But I also understand that I'm not black or I have not lived the black experience. There's something that comes with that.' Whereas black people, we go... the one perk to the oppression is getting the N-word. In a weird way."

He questioned people who claim it's difficult to censor themselves, adding: "Everyone knows how to [do it], especially when it comes to hip hop. So, I don't get why people make it like it's [difficult],"

To prevent the issue, Noah said rap artists should release versions of their songs with a different word in its place.

"They should just make like another version, like a non-black people version that everyone can rap along to [where] they find an alternative word."

In 2018, Kendrick Lamar called out a white fan for failing to censor herself when he invited her to sing one of his songs on stage.

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The rapper was performing his song “M.A.A.D City” at Hangout Festival when the moment happened, halting the music after the fan rapped the racial slur three times.

Following the moment, Lamar cut the woman off and permitted her to perform the song again, telling her: “You got to bleep one single word though.”

In an interview with Vanity Fair, Lamar explained why non-black people shouldn't use the word.

“Let me put it to you in its simplest form,” he said. “I’ve been on this earth for 30 years, and there have been so many things a Caucasian person said I couldn’t do. Get good credit. Buy a house in an urban city. So many things. So if I say this is my word, please let me have that word.”

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