All Articles Tagged "nicki minaj"

Barbershop: The Next Cut Will Not Only Make People Laugh, But It Will Also Tackle Gun Violence In Chicago [Trailer]

November 24th, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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MGM/New Line

MGM/New Line

Welcome back to the barbershop!

It’s been more than 10 years since the last installment in the Barbershop franchise. But after rumors of another film being shopped around popped up last year, Malcolm D. Lee was able to make it happen. Ice Cube and the gang all hustled back into Calvin’s barbershop in Chicago to make a third film. Barbershop: The Next Cut will open nationwide on April 15, 2016.

Until then, you can check out the first trailer from the comedy, which was released today.

Directed once again by Lee, but written this time around by Black-ish showrunner Kenya Barris and The Neighbors Tracey Oliver, we catch up with Calvin (Ice Cube) and Eddie (Cedric the Entertainer) and the inhabitants of their beloved shop. Major changes have been made to it, including the establishment now being co-ed thanks to the addition of a beauty shop that brings with it Angie (Regina Hall) and the feisty Draya (Nicki Minaj).

And major changes are also happening in the surrounding community, where gang violence is rampant. In the hopes of not only saving the shop, and the neighborhood, but to also keep his son Jalen (Michael Rainey Jr.) out of harms way, Calvin and the barbershop crew work together to try and bring about change.

That’s right. This story is a bit deeper than what we were given the first and second time around–and I’m not mad at that.

But no worries! Based on the trailer, the film still has very humorous moments, and that makes sense considering all the funny folks with roles. Anthony Anderson is back as J.D., of course, Cedric the Entertainer is an important player, and then there’s JB Smoove, LaMorne Morris (of New Girl fame), and Deon Cole (of Black-ish popularity).

Common has joined the cast, and some of your old favorites are back too, including Sean Patrick Thomas (Jimmy), Troy Garity (Isaac) and Eve (Terri). No sign of Michael Ealy though.

Check out the trailer for yourself and let us know if you’ll be down for another visit to Calvin’s barbershop next spring.

Nicki Minaj Recites Maya Angelou’s “Still I Rise” And We’re Not Sure What To Make Of It

November 19th, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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A&E put on a concert called “Shining a Light,” the Concert For Progress On Race In America on Wednesday. The stars came out to the Shrine Auditorium in L.A. to take a united stand against racism.

The concert was announced in October, and the point of it all was to get individuals to donate to the A&E Network’s Fund for Progress on Race in America. According to the network’s site, they are hoping to provide financial support to organizations and individuals who are “working to heal historic racial divides, identify and eradicate bias, and activate solutions, as well as to directly aid the Charleston community that inspired this effort.”

That’s right. The fund and the concert that was put together to promote it were both inspired by the shooting at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina in June. The A&E network wants its first donation to be a memorial wing for the church, and to provide support for the families of victims and survivors. You can find out more about the fund here.

As for the concert, quite a few stars performed covers of popular songs about change, from Jill Scott doing “Strange Fruit,” to Miguel and Tori Kelly singing “Free Your Mind,” and John Legend doing “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”

But the shortest performance of all that stuck out to me and my co-workers was Nicki Minaj’s take on Maya Angelou’s poem, “Still I Rise.”

Dressed in sparkling Balmain, the rapper did her best rendition of the poem, and fans of the “Anaconda” lyricist praised the performance all over social media:

“They chose the right person to deliver this. Nicki has been through a lot and people still try to tear down. Such a strong & beautiful woman.”

“She is effortlessly flawless n this rendition…”

“It’s like this poem was made for her…”

But as for the consensus in the MadameNoire office, it was a little off. I think the poem is perfect for what the concert is all about. However, as my co-worker said, “It sounds like when a teenager reads a poem for class, and they don’t really know the meaning.”

I don’t know, man. Maybe it was the delivery, the intonation, the cheerleader pose at the end, or the weird way the crowd cheered when she recited the part about dancing like she has diamonds in the meeting of her thighs–we just couldn’t fully connect with the classic poem this time around.

But what do you think?

Check out Minaj’s performance, and the many others from the talented roster of stars when “Shining a Light,” the Concert For Progress On Race In America airs Friday at 8 p.m. on A&E.

And on a sidenote, Minaj may actually have been the perfect person to recite the poem after all. She does have a song called “Still I Rise” for her haters from her mixtape days.

You’re welcome:


Missy Elliot Covers Billboard, Talks Her Come Back, Her Health & Thoughts On Nicki Minaj

November 19th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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missy elliot covers billboard

Source: Billboard

Now that it seems that we’re finally about to get some new music from Missy Elliot, the Hip Hop legend sat down with Billboard to cover their November 28 issue. In it she talks about the pressure she feels to come out with something hot and fresh, her privacy both in and out of the studio, her health struggles and her thoughts on Nicki Minaj and music today.

Check out the highlights below.

On taking her time to release new music

“I have to be very careful,” she says. “It’s different now. People are quick to be like, ‘You’re irrelevant, you’re a flop, you’re washed up.’ 

The task became particularly challenging considering Elliot is only working with a very small circle of people for this project.

[Pharrell and Timbaland are] “the only two producers that understand me.”

Truth be told, it’s not that the album hasn’t been held off because she’s been uninspired.

“If I wanted to do ‘The Missing Files of Missy Eliliot,’ I have probably six albums just sitting there.”

Missy consciously made a decision to take a break. She just didn’t realize it would be this long.

“People hadn’t realized that I haven’t just been an artist, I’ve been a writer and a producer for other artists. When you’re writing that much, your brain is like a computer. You have refresh it.”

Missy also believes it was her workload didn’t do much to help her Graves disease.

“It causes hair loss, your eyes bulge,” she says. “My blood pressure was always up from just overworking.”

Her protege, Sharaya, spoke about the emotional toll it took on Missy as well.

“It started to change her way of life,” she says. “There were physical changes, extreme headaches, extreme weight loss. What that does to a person, being a public figure and knowing people are looking, judging? That’s a tough thing.”

On Nicki Minaj and the need for more female MCs. 

When asked about Nicki Minaj, who is clearly influenced by Elliott, she mock-innocently replies, “Oh, she is?” (Speaking to her influence generally, she adds, “Unfortunately, breaking news, there is only one Missy.”) Still, she would love to see more woman MCs on the charts — when she was coming up, that was much more common. “It was me, [Lil’] Kim, Lauryn [Hill], Eve, Foxy [Brown], Trina,” she says. “There’s room for so many. It’s important.”

On being shy and maintaining her privacy 

“I was always feisty, always that kid that would be on the porch with a hairbrush singing or rapping,” she says. “I got more shy as I got older and realized people could be laughing at me, or judging me.”

And though she and Timbaland are friends and have been creative partners for years, she’s shy around him too.

“I never record in front of anybody,” she says. “[Even] Tim has never seen me record a day in his life.” Early on she worked with an engineer, but for many years now she has recorded her parts alone — with two exceptions. “It’s just me and my little Yorkies, Poncho and Hoodie.”

The habit of being alone comes from Missy’s childhood where she would use her room as an escape from her often turbulent life. Not only had she repeatedly been sexually abused by her cousin, she also  watched her mother being physically abused by her father, at one point pulling a gun on her.

“My room would become a whole other world once I shut that door,” she says. “That’s why I believe my videos are so important to me. It was Alice in Wonderland: my bed, my closet — it would all turn into something else. And I would write and sing and block out whatever was going on.”

Pieces of that introverted child still remain. Surprisingly enough, while we all remember her absolutely killing her Super Bowl performance with Katy Perry, Missy says that she had a panic attack before it actually happened.

Like, IVs in my arm, everything,” she says. “Nobody knew.” The day of the show, she remembers being just offstage and hearing the opening riff of “Get Ur Freak On.” “I said, ‘If I can get over this step, then I know all my dance steps will be on point,’ ” she recalls. “I know it was nothing but the grace of God that lifted me up and took me through that performance.”

We’re so glad He did!

You can read Missy’s full interview with Billboard here.

Nicki Minaj Set To Receive VH1’s “Big In 2015” Honor From Someone Who Paved The Way

November 14th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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It’s safe to say that Nicki Minaj has been dominating 2015 — sans pink wig.

From her chart-topping third studio album The Pinkprint to an extensive world tour to giving the world the Beyonce collab we’ve all been waiting for, Ms. Onika Maraj is out here putting numbers on the score board for female emcees.

Now, VH1 is giving the Head Barb in charge a proper send off for her unmatched work ethic, as she will receive their “Big In 2015” honor. And of course, for someone as popular and groundbreaking as Nicki, they had to make sure the award presentation was a special one. So, they’ve secured Queen Latifah to present the “Anaconda” rapper with the forthcoming telecast ceremony.

Just two years ago, at the start of Latifah’s daytime talk show, she invited Minaj to appear as a guest. The two talked rapping, guys and much more, but it was Latifah’s assurance that Minaj was on her way to Billboard success that stroke a chord. “You’re one of the top five in the business period,” she said to Minaj. Fast forward to now, Latifah’s sentiments still hold true.

VH1’s “Big In 2015” will air on the network on Dec. 7 at 9 p.m.

Was Nicki Minaj’s Halloween Humor Offensive?

November 1st, 2015 - By Toya Sharee
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nicki's twisted halloween humor


Nicki Minaj is being accused of having some bippity-boppity bad humor on Instagram last night while celebrating Halloween. You may have spotted the “Truffle Butter” beauty floating through your feed in a revealing fairy princess costume, but followers didn’t think her jokes were nearly as cute.

First Nicki re-posted this picture mocking the sexual assault situation surrounding Bill Cosby:

Our generation is so desensitized

A photo posted by Nicki Minaj (@nickiminaj) on

Although in the rapper’s defense, it was a re-post from DJ Clue, but some say Ms. Minaj is equally to blame for sharing it. Nicki also points out that the picture is evidence how disconnected and apathetic this generation has become.

Well the jokes didn’t stop there. TMZ reports that Queen Barb had too much of a good time at Las Vegas’s 1 OAK where she hosted a party. In a video the rapper posted to her account, Nicki can be seen waving her wand at a woman in a wheelchair announcing, “I command you to walk!” before Nicki and her crew burst into laughter. Needless to say, there were a few disgruntled fans that didn’t approve of Nicki making a laughing matter of the disabled. Nicki says the woman in the wheelchair is actually her make-up artist who was too drunk to walk.

Maybe Nicki should leave the “tricks” to the professionals or point that wand at Meek and command him to get out of his feelings on Twitter. But admittedly, it is about to be #SagSeason and as a dark-humored Sagittarius myself, I can attest to the fact that our dark-humor can be a little too much for some to digest. If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, there’s plenty to be angry about. Maybe we should cut the Barb a break this time.

See the vid for yourself below. Do you think Nicki’s joke was out of pocket?

I’m Still Waiting For Jay Z And ‘Nem To Prove I Need Tidal

October 21st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: Instagram

Source: Instagram

When I heard the news that Tidal was hosting a concert featuring Prince, Beyoncé, Jay Z, Usher and more I immediately hopped on G Chat to let my sister and friends know that it was probably the place we needed to be on October 20.

My sister, the ticket purchaser extraordinaire, volunteered to stare at her screen until 12 pm when the tickets were available. None of us are Tidal subscribers so we had to wait until they became available to the general public. Well, they never really did.

Thankfully, there’s StubHub. But if you’ve ever used the service you know people can be a bit outrageous with their asking prices. So we waited for the date to near and the ticket prices to come down some. In the meantime, I bought a cheap flight to Puerto Rico and Victoria (our Senior Editor) remembered she was saving for a wedding and that money could probably be put to good use elsewhere. So we dropped out.

But my sister and her friend were still down and they purchased tickets for $150 each.

They ended up being somewhere in the nosebleed section but they were going to see quite a few of their faves under one roof. Surely, it would be worth it.

Not quite.

When my sister came home last night, after the concert, she didn’t come in humming a tune. Her voice wasn’t hoarse from screaming and singing at the top of her lungs. She came in silently. I had to ask her how it went.

“It was terrible.”


She said that when she and her friend got there they noticed that Prince’s name was no longer on the flier. They thought it was weird but would eventually learn that he had pulled out of the performance all together.

Then artists like Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj, and even Usher only sang 1-2 songs.

And Beyoncé, the greatest entertainer of our time? She didn’t even get a set to herself. She only appeared on stage to slay with Nicki Minaj during “Feelin’ Myself” and alongside her husband for “Holy Grail.”

No wonder the homie Prince had to back out. Which two Prince songs would you want to hear in concert? That’s an impossible question to answer. I want to hear 20 Prince songs…at least.

While I was thankful that I didn’t spend my own money on what would have been an epic let down, I was also disappointed for my sister and for Tidal at large.

At the end of the day, I would love for Tidal to win; but up until now, they really haven’t shown me anything that proves they deserve to.

For centuries, artists, particularly Black artists have been screwed out of their fair share. The record companies never let them see it. Their managers and lawyers take it. And now, in this digital age, fans can listen to the music, virtually any time they want, and the artist is not compensated for it.

As a fellow creative, I know, fundamentally, that’s not right.

And while I would love for Jay Z, a Black businessman to be the one to change the game and bring power back to the people who create the music and culture we love, he seems to keep missing opportunities to do just that.

At the press conference when the service was first announced, all of the celebrities trotted out and stood in a line, smiling before signing a paper. Alicia Keys made a speech about changing the game but I still didn’t understand exactly what I was supposed to be buying into. And I just can’t afford to pay $20 for a service of which I haven’t been convinced.

Instead of using the press conference as a time to tell the people what it’s like to feel used and abused as an artist, the world’s most financially successful musicians smiled and asked for even more of our money.

That’s ballsy particularly when there are services that will do it for free. See Spotify, Pandora etc.

I can’t help but get the impression that Jay Z and his executive board felt like their mere presence and star power would be enough for the people. And when it comes to $20 a month, after we already support these artists’ albums, tours and art, it’s a bit much. At the very least, it will take some convincing.

This is the same thing that happened last night at the Barclays Center. The most successful names in music stood out, gave us a sampling of their talent and then dipped. Thankfully, the money went to “nonprofit organizations dedicated to advancing positive community relations and effecting systemic change for the development and sustainability of just societies,” but once again, the consumer was left uninformed and slighted.

It’s been a rough start for the brand. Hopefully they’ll be able to find a way to both market the product better and actually appeal to the customer’s needs and wants rather than just relying on celebrity.

Racial Caricatures, Lazy Writers And Ellen’s Unfunny Nicki Minaj Skit

October 14th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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ellen's nicki minaj skit

Source: Ellen Show

Have you ever had a liberal, White friend who you thought was cool until they made one racially insensitive or down right hurtful joke and you had to reevaluate your whole relationship? I know I have. And right about now, I wonder if Nicki Minaj is feeling that same way about her girl Ellen.

In all fairness, Nicki and Ellen might not exactly be friends but they ware certainly friendly. Yet, that didn’t stop Ellen from making a particularly unfunny and distasteful joke about Nicki Minaj’s upcoming family show.

You may remember that we reported that Minaj was getting to produce a new series based on her childhood as a Trinidadian immigrant.

And while it certainly seemed like a good look for her, a way to expand her brand and make moves as a business woman, Ellen isn’t taking it too seriously.

In a recent skit for her daytime show, Ellen pretended to offer a sneak preview of the upcoming show.

In it, we see a little girl with a huge behind bound down the stairs to speak to her mother with a huge behind. Her father is also blessed in the back. And then for kicks and giggles, even the dog has a protruding posterior.

If you can’t tell from my description, the skit wasn’t very funny…like at all. It was lazy. Making fun of Black people with big behinds is not only trite, it has roots in some very painful history. It seems like Black women’s websites are always referencing Sarah Baartman and it’s skits like these that prove we still need to be saying her name.

Someone likened the skit to a minstrel show and I see no lies.

While Nicki Minaj proudly displays and even draws attention to her derriere, it is not all there is to her. And a prosthetic behind on a little Black girl, a child, for public viewing and entertainment is just not ok.

There are those who don’t see a problem with the skit because of Nicki’s own brand but I shudder to think what the response would have been if a Jewish girl’s family was lampooned because of their large noses. Caricatures and depictions, particularly when they’re being crafted by non-Black people, are vitally important as they can do a lot of social and psychological damage.

In thinking about the skit throughout just this day, it would have far more hilarious if the little girl portraying Nicki Minaj had displayed several alter egos like the rapper does in her verses. A young “Roman” would have been quite funny and I would have loved to see how her parents would have handled that one. Instead, we got to see exaggerated depictions of the Black body that Nicki Minaj has been so crudely reduced to.

I’m just not laughing.

If you haven’t seen the skit in its entirety, check it out here.

Ellen/Nicki Minaj SKitYesterday, Ellen DeGeneres aired a skit about an upcoming sitcom around Nicki Minaj’s childhood. It featured a little black girl, a black woman and man with extremely large butts. Watch below, and you tell us whether you think sexualizing little black girls is okay. #SOUNDOFF

Posted by Colorlines on Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Pass Or Play? Nicki Minaj Assists The Weeknd On “The Hills” Remix

October 11th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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What’s an emotional R&B crooner to do with a chart-topping hit that has received critical-acclaim and peaked No. 1 on the Billboard R&B Songs Chart? Get Nicki Minaj to lay her highly favored rhymes over it, of course. The Weeknd’s “The Hills” track from his third album Beauty Behind The Madness just got the Midas touch thanks to Minaj.

Yesterday (Oct. 10), Minaj revealed to her beloved Barbz and 35 million Instagram followers that she would be on the official remix of the Million $ Mano and Illangelo-produced track. In true Minaj fashion, she lends flamboyant tongue-twisting bars to the beginning of the sultry track.

Last night, The Weeknd also made an appearance on Saturday Night Live as that episodes musical guest. The Canadian singer surprised all when brought out Nicki to take the stage alongside him and perform their new remix.

Give the official “The Hills” remix featuring Nicki Minaj a spin below and watch their SNL performance above.

Nicki Was Right: Why Do Some Women Blame Other Women For What Men Do?

October 8th, 2015 - By Desiree Bowie
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Image Source: WENN

Image Source: WENN

Nicki Minaj has made news yet again, this time for unabashedly speaking her mind all while making a great point. A New York Times Magazine profile published this week allowed Minaj to step up to the plate to defend herself against microaggressions being lobbed her way for situations way out of her control. Minaj’s response is making waves, and I look at it as one of the few instances where keeping it real goes right in Hollywood.

The profile was very well done for the most part. Writer Vanessa Grigoriadis managed to get into the psyche of the musician, letting readers in on what it’s like to be a major crossover pop star in the digital era.

And then it all unraveled at the end.

In the latter part of the interview, Grigoriadis questions Minaj about her sticky positioning in the middle of two major feuds (between Birdman and Lil Wayne as well as Drake and Meek Mill). After asking Minaj how she feels about the disputes (which Minaj says she wishes would end already), the writer goes in for the sucker punch:

“Is there a part of you that thrives on drama, or is it no, just pain and unpleasantness—”

Pause. There was a literal pause. And in that silence, the writer should’ve clutched her pearls and fled the room, but the foolish can often be brave.

“That’s disrespectful. Why would a grown-ass woman thrive off drama?” Nicki clapped back.

The writer realized her error and immediately tried to apologize to Minaj, who was not trying to hear that noise.

‘‘What do the four men you just named have to do with me thriving off drama? Why would you even say that? That’s so peculiar. Four grown-ass men are having issues between themselves, and you’re asking me do I thrive off drama?”

Minaj is right. She has remained Switzerland as heck in both tense situations. Her man has been the butt of hundreds of memes and a slew of diss tracks. And her name has been brought up in the feud between the man who gave her a chance and the one behind the label that pushed her to the top. And yet, she has been silent about the whole thing. A muteness that would make Charlie Chaplin proud.

So, why was she being thrown into the mix as a someone thriving off of the melee? A Helen of Troy. A puppetmaster. Did I mention that Minaj wasn’t having any of that noise?

‘‘That’s the typical thing that women do. What did you putting me down right there do for you?’ Women blame women for things that have nothing to do with them. I really want to know why — as a matter of fact, I don’t. Can we move on, do you have anything else to ask? To put down a woman for something that men do, as if they’re children and I’m responsible, has nothing to do with you asking stupid questions, because you know that’s not just a stupid question. That’s a premeditated thing you just did.’’

She chucked up the deuces on the writer and the interview and left me wanting to give her a round of applause for her response. Why are women so quick to blame other women for everything?

It’s a systemic effect of patriarchy. Men are let off the hook for “being men” while women are taught to be wary of other women. A man cheats, and some women quickly place the blame on the woman he cheated with because “he’s just a man and that’s what they do.” If we could truly start holding men accountable for their actions, we could threaten the patriarchy, and we could strengthen our womanhood.

There is a list of microaggressions that are sent in a woman’s direction when it’s time for blame to be placed. We are often unable to speak for ourselves without being deemed “emotional,” “dramatic,” or “all over the place.” So to see a woman journalist use these same tactics against a successful and self-assured woman is disheartening. To see her downplay Minaj’s achievements and standing by relegating her to a cast member or accessory in the soap operas of her counterparts (and boyfriend) is also discouraging. Screw talking about drama. Misogyny is out here thriving on these streets.

Meek Mill and Drake are “grown-ass men” and Nicki Minaj is caught on the sidelines. She has to watch her long-time friend and coworker publicly humiliate her man while using her success as the biggest punchline to threaten Mill’s manhood (i.e., “Is that a world tour or your girl’s tour?”). There could be no way Minaj thrived off of that. It’s never fun to be caught in the middle, millionaire pop star or not.

Furthermore, the idea that she is in any way responsible for the actions of this group of feuding men is pure lunacy. I’m sure if Minaj could control them, she would shut this whole farce down so they could get back to making music and holding a controlling interest in pop and hip-hop. Hopefully, the reporter learned a lesson from her ridiculous line of questioning, and readers, thanks to Minaj, were able to spotlight misogyny as it rears its head, even in women.

Nicki Minaj Explains Why She Had To Check Miley Cyrus At The VMAs…And We Get It

October 7th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Nicki Minaj Explains Why She Had To Check Miley Cyrus

Shortly after the VMAs nominations were announced, there was a flurry of lightweight controversy. Nicki Minaj stepped forward to say that she was disappointed to see that the visuals for her song “Anaconda” weren’t nominated for video of the year. She attributed it to the network preferring videos that featured thin women. And she even dropped some realness saying that Black women contribute too much to pop culture for it not to be recognized on the world stage.

All facts.

Afterward, both Taylor Swift and Miley Cyrus either questioned or condemned her remarks. Taylor was just confused and she and Nicki were able to come to an understanding later, even opening up the show together.

But it was Miley who made some character judgements about Minaj. And she took them to the media.

In her interview with the New York Times, she repeatedly said that though she didn’t really know what was going on,”There’s a way to talk to people…” and “I don’t respect your statement because of the anger that came with it.” She said her comments were not polite and than said Minaj is “not too kind.”

Completely out of line considering Minaj was not directing the tweets at any one artist. She was speaking about the state of the industry.

And Nicki had a few words for her.

We all witnessed the tense interaction when Nicki took the stage to accept her award. After she thanked her pastor, Minaj said, “And now, this bitch that had a lot to say about me the other day in the press…Miley, what’s good?’’

MTV cut Nicki’s mike, but, if you read her lips you could see her saying: ‘‘Don’t play with me, bitch.’’

Personally, I thought she was joking. She was not. And she made that point very clear in her recent piece with the New York Times, entitled: “The Passion of Nicki Minaj,” she explained why she had to come for Miley.

‘‘The fact that you feel upset about me speaking on something that affects black women makes me feel like you have some big balls. You’re in videos with black men, and you’re bringing out black women on your stages, but you don’t want to know how black women feel about something that’s so important? Come on, you can’t want the good without the bad. If you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle, bond with us, dance with us, have fun with us, twerk with us, rap with us, then you should also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we feel is unfair to us. You shouldn’t not want to know that.’’

Yes, Nicki.

It’s about time someone in the Hip Hop industry stopped cosigning Miley’s foolishness.