Rapper J. Cole is raising eyebrows for recent comments he made about race in America, specifically how they relate to President Barack Obama.
Cole, who just earned 10 BET Hip Hop Awards nominations, frankly weighed in on light- vs. dark-skinned divide that continues to embroil hip-hop.
As BET noted, music videos often feature light-skinned models, and J. Cole has made a concerted effort to challenge that paradigm of late.
Why is that? He says, "I can’t say for sure but I just think we’re still in America. We’re still Black Americans. Those mental chains are still in us."
"That brainwashing that tells us that light skin is better, it’s subconsciously in us, whether we know it or not, still pursuing light skin women."
"There are some women out there that are like, 'I don’t even like light skin men' and that’s fine. But Barack Obama would not be President if he were dark skin."
"You know what I mean? That’s just the truth."
"I might not be as successful as I am now if I was dark skin. I’m not saying that for sure, I’m still as talented as I am and Obama is still as smart as he is, but it’s just a sad truth."
Cole, seemingly aware that what he had just said was controversial, noted that this may not translate well into text, and tried to qualify them somewhat.
He went on to state that he "can only naturally assume it’s probably easier for a light skin male rapper than it might be for a dark skin male rapper."
What do you think? Are Cole's blunt views on race on or off the mark? Refreshingly satisfying or sad and undeveloped? Let us know what you think below.