The last person anyone would assume is a champion of the “All Lives Matter” counterattack to the Black Lives Matter might have been the RZA. Yet, the de facto leader of the Wu-Tang Clan most certainly took that stance and even hopped into his respectability politics bag which angered many across social media.
In a wide-ranging chat with Bloomberg TV’s With All Due Respect, the artist and mogul born Robert Diggs shared some of his feelings around Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House, Donald Trump and the current reign of President Barack Obama. But it was his views on police and the “All Lives Matter” slogan that spiraled into a surprising revelation.
RZA also offered his thoughts on the Black Lives Matter movement, a hashtag that emerged in response to police brutality that has grown into a political call for civil rights. “Of course black lives matter,” RZA said, firmly. “All lives matter. I stopped eating meat because their lives matter to me. I don’t think it’s necessary for us to grow a cow to kill it.”
He spoke of how views toward police officers have shifted. “Look, I wanted to be in law enforcement as a kid,” he said. He referenced the coolness of characters on the television shows Baretta and Starsky & Hutch.
“You wanted to be these guys, you know what I mean?” But the image has changed. “In the old days, a cop, you’d let him in your house and give him a cookie and milk. Now you’re like”—he recoiled, expressing wariness and difference—“yo, yo yo, yo.”
RZA doubled down on his feelings around life equality and stressed that he tells his sons to mind how they dress in public as to not attract the negative attention of police officers.
When you think about some of the brothers who are being brutalized by the police, you also got to have them take a look, and us take a look , in the mirror, at the image we portray. If I’m a cop and every time I see a young black youth, whether I watch them on TV, movies, or just see them hanging out, and they’re not looking properly dressed, properly refined, you know, carrying himself, conducting himself proper hours of the day—things that a man does, you’re going to have a certain fear and stereotype of them. I tell my sons, I say, if you’re going somewhere, you don’t have to wear a hoodie–we live in New York, so a hoodie and all that is all good. But sometimes, you know, button up your shirt. Clean up. Look like a young man.
Since the video of the interview has gone live, the response on social media has been harsh as expected with some stating open disgust at RZA’s viewpoints.
“Rza has sold. Out as well #f*ckboy “if I’m a cop and every time I see a young black youth and they not looking. Properly dressed or refined things that a man does you are going to have a certain fear and. Stereotype. Clean up look like a young man ”
If you agree to any of this you are a piece of sh*t !!!!! and your father shouldve swallowed you,” wrote Malik Rhasaan in a widely shared video clip.
See below and check out the following pages to see some of the responses.