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Rick Ross’ new Mastermind album hasn’t even hit stores yet and he’s already having to explain himself thanks to a lyric mentioning Trayvon Martin’s name (on the 2nd anniversary of his murder at that).

The Maybach Music CEO’s forthcoming sixth studio album was made available for free stream today. Fans couldn’t help but notice a glaring lyric that, metaphorically speaking in any context, seemed disrespectful towards the slain Florida teenager. The same teen whose killer, George Zimmerman, was cleared of all charges around him and parades around in the media like some sort of celebrity.

On the album’s 11th song “BLK & WHT,” Ross spits, “Forbes dot com/I’m the Teflon Don/Too close to a ni**a as a mother**king bomb/Trayvon Martin, I’m never missing my target/B*tch n****s hating/Tell me it’s what I’m parking/Wing Stop owner/Lemon pepper aroma/Young, black n***a/barely got a diploma,” before diving into a drug-related chorus.

Just as fast as listeners began to form an opinion surrounding the line, Ross ran over to VIBE to clarify his stance on putting Martin’s name in his raps. “It’s so important that today, on the two-year anniversary of the death of Trayvon Martin, we never forget that tragedy,” Ross says in a quote emailed exclusively to VIBE. “I’m never going to let the world forget that name. In my song ‘Black and White’ off Mastermind I say, ‘Trayvon Martin, I’m never missing my target’. There I’m reminding people that if you’re a black person or a person of any color for that matter in this country, you have to be accurate, whatever moves you make, stay accurate. Even when you’re walking down the street, playing music from your car, you have to stay on point.”

He elaborated further saying, “Black men are being killed and their killers [are] beating the trial. It hasn’t been this much violence against black men since the ’60s. I am Trayvon Martin, we’re all Trayvon Martin. He was from South Florida. That could have been me or one of my homies. So, stay alert and never miss your target. Whatever that target may be. Getting out the hood, providing from your family. Stay sharp. Stay alive. Trayvon, Rest in Peace.”

It is inevitable for this watershed moment to be compared against Ross’ 2013 controversy where he rapped about date rape drugs, only to subsequently receive a ton of flak before apologizing multiple times.

Does he have a point or is he just back pedaling into the damage control lane?

Speak your peace in the comment section below and hit the next page to listen the “BLK & WHT” record which is currently under the microscope. To listen to the album in full, click here.

Photo: Instagram/Rich Forever

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