Tyler, the Creator is the improbable critical darling of the rap group Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All. His songs are full of slurs and imagery that one simply does not find in polite society, yet the nineteen-year-old is nonetheless championed by esteemed publications like the New York Times and the indie scene as a whole. So why does he get a pass? The band Tegan and Sara doesn't think he should and said as much in an online letter, excerpted here via The A.V. Club:
“When will misogynistic and homophobic ranting and raving result in meaningful repercussions in the entertainment industry? When will they be treated with the same seriousness as racist and anti-Semitic offenses?… In any other industry would I be expected to tolerate, overlook and find deeper meaning in this kid’s sickening rhetoric? Why should I care about this music or its “brilliance” when the message is so repulsive and irresponsible? …
I realize I could ask that question of DOZENS of other artists, but is Tyler exempt because people are afraid of the backlash? The inevitable claim that detractors are being racist, or the brush-off that not “getting it” would indicate that you’re “old” (or a faggot)? Because, the more I think about it, the more I think people don’t actually want to go up against this particular bully because he’s popular. Who sticks up for women and gay people now? It seems entirely uncool to do so in the indie rock world, and I’ll argue that point with ANYONE.”
If you're wondering, this is how Tyler responded:
Of course. Feel free to leave more nuanced takes on the situation in the comments below.