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Tyler, the Creator Says UK Ban Was Because He's Dark-Skinned

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 16: Tyler, The Creator performs live on stage at O2 Academy Brixton on September 16, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Jim Dyson/Getty Images)

The ban has now been lifted, after four years.

Tyler the Creator's ban from the United Kingdom has been lifted and now the rapper is speaking out on how he was "treated like a terrorist" by UK Prime Minister Theresa May.

While serving as the country's Home Secretary, May banned Tyler from entering the U.K. in 2015 over lyrics from his albums Bastard and Goblin. The albums, which where released in 2009 and 2011 respectively, included repeated use of homophobic slurs and May said they "encourage[d] violence and intolerance of homosexuality" and "foster[ed] hatred with views that seek to provoke others to terrorist acts." Goblin, reportedly included the slur "faggot" in it 213 times.

Things didn't look better for the rapper when May took office as Prime Minister in 2016 but much to Tyler's delight, May announced her resignation as leader of the Convervative and Unionist Party after failing to deliver her Brexit plan earlier this year.

"She's gone, I'm back," Tyler joked in an interview with The Guardian. The musician explained to the outlet that undoing the ban was a long and challenging process. "Then you get the official thumbs up. It was like: damn, finally, but it was so stupid to have to endure that. I got treated like a terrorist," he continued, "Yeah. I got treated like I was a murderer."

"It was kind of stupid, and after a while I was like: I don't even want to come back," he said. "But it was more the principle of: 'Y'all really did this, over this? In comparison to other shit people do, that y'all let in?' So I'm happy that I got back. I feel like I won some invisible fight."

Although Tyler was surprised at the length of the ban (it lasted four years) he noted that racism could have been at play. "Yeah it surprised me," he told the outlet. "But then I remembered, I'm dark-skinned, so ahh, all right, I get it. I mean, I don't point my finger at that first, but I looked at every outcome and I looked at every option."

After making a circle with his hands he continued: "And after doing that six times, then you say, OK, what's the difference between everyone else and me? And then you land on that."

The rapper is currently on his IGOR tour to promote his recent album of the same name, with performances at Brixton Academy in London, his first gigs in the UK since the ban.

RELATED |Tyler, the Creator: 'I Been Kissing White Boys Since 2004'

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