LL Cool J Addresses ‘Accidental Racist’ Backlash on ‘Leno’

LL Cool J and Jay Leno

LL Cool J sparked a national debate this week with “Accidental Racist,” his controversial collaboration with country singer Brad Paisley. During his appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” he defended the song off Paisley’s album Wheelhouse.

“I feel good. The song wasn’t perfect. You can’t fit 300 or 400 years of history into a 3-4 minute song,” said the 45-year-old rapper, whose new album Authentic is due April 30.

The song was criticized for its lyrics. “In no way would I ever compare the history of the confederate flag with a du-rag,” said LL. “However, when you think about a kid like Trayvon Martin, and you think of some of the things that happened in society based on clothing, when you put it in its proper context, it makes sense.”

His intention was not to offend. “I would never, ever, ever suggest to anyone that we should just forget slavery and act like that didn’t happen,” he continued. “I understand the systemic racism that exists, I get that, but if the playing field is unlevel and you feel it’s unfair, then maybe putting down some of that baggage will help you make it up that hill a little easier.”

LL wasn’t surprised by the backlash. “I wasn’t shocked. I’m actually pleased that the dialogue is happening.”

The six-minute song was intended to start a conversation about race, but also unite Americans. “As long as people are having a conversation, then the art has done its job,” he said. “America as a whole, we need to come together. We don’t need to be talking about tearing the fabric of society apart. We need to be connecting with each other and becoming closer as human beings and loving one another.”

[MWP]

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14 Comments

  1. flawda

    smh at put down some of that baggage, oh really LL. Where suppose to never forget the Holocaust and 911, but when it comes to slavery we’re suppose to put down some of that baggage.

    Man, if you don’t sit your ass down.

    [Reply]

    flawda Reply:

    @flawda, *we’re

    [Reply]

    zzzz Reply:

    @flawda, huh, he aint saying forget slavery listen with your ears, he’s saying races need to get along KMT dumb man.

    [Reply]

    flawda Reply:

    @zzzz, False, he was telling black folks to put down some of that ”baggage” to even the scales. Maybe you should step your listening skills up.

    What baggage does white people have, why would they need to put anything down when the scales are tilted for them.

    [Reply]

    Ryan Reply:

    @flawda, 9/11 was an American tragedy. Whites, blacks, yellows, purples, foreigners died. How is that comparable?

    And the Holocaust was in this lifetime? People know people directly affected…

    Do you know anyone who was personally a slave? Didn’t think so.

    [Reply]

    Rae Reply:

    @Ryan, um but the effects of slavery are still seen within the black community today. Slavery may have been abolished long ago, but many of our parents lived in the time when Jim Crow laws were still present, and today racism is still very much an issue. I agree that we shouldn’t carry slavery on our backs as an excuse but I also understand exactly where @flawda is coming from (except in using 9/11 as an example).

    [Reply]

    CoolieJ Reply:

    @Ryan,

    It doesn’t matter if he knows someone who was personally a slave or not. American slavery is a huge part of American history and it’s effects can still be felt today in many parts of the country. Sit.

    [Reply]

    Ryan Reply:

    @CoolieJ, Where in our country are the effects of slavery still being felt?

    PLEASE tell me. Sit on that.

    [Reply]

  2. flawda

    ” If you feel the playing field isn’t level, putting down your baggage may help you get up that hill!” – LL Cool J

    [Reply]

  3. Kyle

    There’s a reason why LL Cool J still has a career and is still going strong after all these years. He’s so humble and personable. He’s a great dude! I thik he defended the song well.

    [Reply]

  4. Ryan

    I’m so damn tired of slavery still being an issue. That’s what is keeping the black community from growing. ALWAYS complaining instead of DOING something.

    [Reply]

  5. Ross

    Sometimes in life people choose not to let things go. Doing so means that they don’t have it to throw around when they desire. Slavery has become that for many people, just a card to play.

    It is a part of history that will and should be remembered, but on the same note generations that were not a part of it should never act like they felt it first hand. Stories from family members do not equal living it. It’s disrespectful to the people that experience it for younger people to use it like that.

    [Reply]

  6. bibi93

    ll cool j is hot!!

    [Reply]

  7. Asa

    Song is terrible.

    [Reply]

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