Action Bronson Removed From College Concert Lineup Due To Misogynistic & Homophobic Lyrics

This week, Queens, New York MC Action Bronson was removed from an April 2 concert lineup at George Washington University. Washington, D.C. university students gathered a reported 249 signatures in a petition to convince organizers, George Washington’s Program Board, to cancel Bronson’s appearance due to his song lyrics promoting violence against women, as well as perceived homophobia and transphobia.

The Hatchet, G.W.U’s newspaper ran an editorial article calling the Atlantic Records artist and VICE personality’s messages into question. “[Action] Bronson has a history of public transphobia, and has mocked transgender people on Instagram,” Sarah Blugis wrote. “He’s also been widely criticized for the song ‘Consensual Rape,’ in which he describes drugging and raping a woman. One of his music videos, for a song called ‘Brunch,’ depicts Bronson cooking a meal next to a woman’s dead body, putting her body in the trunk of his car, then stabbing her repeatedly while shouting gendered insults.”

The board responded with the following message, sent as a tweet:

Less than one day following the news (March 31), Bronson responded via Facebook, addressing the criticism. He wrote the following, embedded and copied:

To the Students at George Washington University and the public at large:I’m writing this letter to hopefully bring…

Posted by Action Bronson on Thursday, March 31, 2016

To the Students at George Washington University and the public at large:

I’m writing this letter to hopefully bring clarity to some misconceptions about who I am as an artist and as a person. It has become clear to me that things have reached a point which makes me feel the need to address the issues raised so that we can bring some understanding and healing to the table, so to speak. I can’t continue to walk around with the thought that people are thinking these things about me that are far from who I really am.

Five years ago in 2011, I wrote a song called ‘Consensual Rape’ that admittedly contains lyrics and a general sentiment of violence towards woman which I never meant to represent who I am but rather to depict a story. I approach my music as other types of artists approach their work, and I don’t always intend the stories that I tell, the characters that I play in them or the lyrics I lay down to be taken literally. The songs I make aren’t any different than a director creating a movie, or an author writing a book meaning they contain scenes or things happen in them that aren’t meant to be anything but an artistic expression- just a song, a book or a film. I’ve never performed ‘Consensual Rape’ at a concert, and I don’t plan to.

Regardless, I understand that when it comes to musicians, and more specifically rappers, the lyrics I say are taken to heart many times as a representation of my beliefs or true feelings. SO please let me make this very clear: I think rape and acts of violence toward woman are DISGUSTING. I would never condone anything remotely close to that type of behavior, and it’s certainly not what I’m about at all. But, the song in question has caused people discomfort and pain and I’m sincerely sorry about it. It was not my intention to hurt people when I made it years ago, and I certainly will be much more sensitive on this matter moving ahead.

Similarly, there has been some attention placed on a insensitive Instagram post I made years ago regarding me inappropriately labelling someone as transexual and being disrespectful to them in a way that is not ok. I have sat with members of the LGBT community recently in an effort to understand how to avoid being hurtful and insensitive towards these issues moving forward. I have never had any issues with anyone’s sexual orientation or gender transitioning. I’m far, far from perfect and I recognize my flaws and I’m making an effort to grow and be a better human.

Thanks for reading this.

-Action Bronson

Three years ago this month, Hip-Hop artist Rick Ross was publicly released from a multi-million dollar Reebok endorsement contract. The Maybach Music Group founder was dropped after his apology to protesters surrounding rape lyrics in his verse to Rocko song, “U.O.E.N.O.”

GoldLink, who was originally planned to open for Action Bronson, will now headline tomorrow’s event.

Read: Student leaders should not stay quiet about the Spring Fling headliner by Sarah Blugis at The Hatchet.

Related: Dee Barnes Responds to Dr. Dre’s Apology to the Women He Abused With Powerful Words