Search form

Scroll To Top

Macklemore Tackles White Privilege & Cultural Appropriation In New Song 

Macklemore Tackles White Privilege & Cultural Appropriation In New Song

Photo via Wikipedia/Dave of The Come Up Show

"We take all we want from black culture, but will we show up for black lives?"

Macklemore's 2012 tribute to marriage equality, "Same Love," topped the charts and brought LGBT rights issues to mainstream listeners. As a straight man, the rapper sought to use his platform to amplify voices that wouldn't otherwise reach such a wide audience. Of course, "Same Love" received as much praise as criticism, a scenario that's being played out again in light of his most recent release, "White Privilege II."

RELATED | The Making of Macklemore

The song clocks in at nearly nine minutes (and is available for free on iTunes), and tackles very topical issues of racial (in)justice, police brutality, and the Black Lives Matters movement. Audio clips of black activists and white detractors are woven throughout the track, widening the scope of the song. Some of the lyrics address broad issues of racism and inequality:

"It seems like we're more concerned with being called racist, than we actually are with racism."

"You speak about equality but do you really mean it? Are you marching for freedom or when it's convenient?"

Other verses seem to indicate personal introspection:

"If I'm only in this for my own self interest, not the culture that gave me a voice to begin with, then this isn't authentic, it's just a gimic."

"The one thing the American dream fails to mention, is I was many steps ahead to begin with."

Reactions to the song have been mixed. Deray McKesson, an Out100 honoree and leading figure within the Black Lives Matters movement, weighed in on Twitter:

Others remain critical:

What are your thoughts? Listen to the song below:

RELATED | A Brief History of 'Same Love'

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

James McDonald