Drake and J. Cole recently came under fire for lyrics in their song “Jodeci Freestyle” that made light of sufferers of autism. The latter—who rhymes “I’m artistic, you ni–as is autistic, retarded,” on the song—has offered up an apology via a lengthy letter where he explains his regret and remorse over the matter.
The Anti-Bullying Alliance and activist Anna Kennedy started a petition via Change.org that demanded the two MCs apologize for their offensive lyrics and remove them from any official release of the song, which dropped in late June. Last night (July 21), Cole wrote a note on Twitter that read, “I said something in a rap that was offensive to those with Autism. Feel terrible. A tweeted apology wouldn’t do,” and included a link to his letter.
“In a recent verse on the song ‘Jodeci Freestyle’, I said something highly offensive to people with Autism,” wrote Cole. “Last week, when I first saw a comment from someone outraged about the lyric, I realized right away that what I said was wrong. I was instantly embarrassed that I would be ignorant enough say something so hurtful. What makes the crime worse is that I should have known better.”
It’s easier to believe Cole’s sincerity since he hasn’t lost any endorsement deals over the matter. Rick Ross and Lil Wayne offered up apologies to recent errs of lyrical judgement only after their spokesman deals with Reebok and Mountain Dew, respectively, were on the line (both were dropped).
Do you think Cole did the right thing or should he have fell back on “creative license”? Also, although he didn’t kick the offending rhymes, should Drake apologize, too?
Let us know what you think in the comments. Read Cole’s full apology right here.