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Straight rapper titles album “I’m Gay” in gay-rights solidarity, faces backlash

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Twenty-three-year-old rapper Lil B, of critically respected hip-hop group The Pack, just announced that his new album will be titled I'm Gay. This is a pretty interesting move given a) long-standing trends of homophobia in hip-hop and b) the fact that the artist, born Brandon McCartney, is not actually gay. To the contrary, he told MTV that he's "not attracted to men in any way. I've never been attracted to a man in my life. But yes I am gay, I'm so happy… I'm a gay, heterosexual male."

Lil B went on to make what I think is a pretty sweet and bold argument against homophobia in hip-hop, explaining that "I got major love for the gay and lesbian community, and I just want to push less separation and that's why I'm doing it… One-hundred years later, people gonna thank me, because people are going to be free." This stance has already cost him some fans, including some who apparently sent him death threats. His response? "That's fine, because you know what? They didn't love me for real anyway."

Perhaps needless to say, Lil B is from Berkeley. Slate's Jonah Weiner called him "a brilliantly warped, post-Lil-Wayne deconstructionist;" he also appears to be remarkably fearless. Way to go, Lil B.