I bet many of you had never even heard of rapper Lil B prior to his decision to name his upcoming album "I'm Gay." The rapper broke the news back in April onstage at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. The self-identified heterosexual,who denies being gay, says he hopes his album title serves as a lesson in tolerance in order to show people that “words don’t mean s**t.”
Many people are skeptical about Lil B's motives including The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). “As a lyricist, Lil B knows that words matter. Slurs have the power to fuel intolerance. We hope that Lil B’s album title is not just a gimmick, and is really a sincere attempt to be an ally. He has the platform and the voice. We hope he uses it in a positive way.”
In recent days CNN has examined the growing controversy surrounding Lil B's album title. Gavin Godfrey hosts a discussion with openly gay hip-hop blogger and good friend Gyant (GyantUnplugged), who recently came out via Twitter and openly gay author Terrance Dean (Hiding in Hip-Hop) on a CNN podcast. Listen here.
Gyant on Lil B: "If you're really saying you want to bridge the gaps then I want to see you perform at Bulldogs or some gay club. I wanna see you marching in support of gay rights. I wanna see you involved in the gay community. If I don't see any of that then your actions are not backing up your words. Therefore, it means nothing. Therefore, you are simply trying to sell an album."
Terrance Dean believes that Lil B's motives are sincere. " I think that he is genuinely sincere. He wants to bridge the LGBT community and the black and brown communities together and create this dialogue to show the dangers of homophobia and what it has created."
Lil B tells CNN that following the announcement to name his album "I'm Gay" he received death threats.
"Mainly, a lot of them are on Twitter, saying that they're going to kill me for being gay, and they're going to kill me for being homosexual even though I'm not homosexual. I don't like men. They're saying they're going to bash my head in. They're calling me f-----. That's all right, because I did this with the pure intention in my heart to help people, and I didn't do this for promotional reasons. I did because there needs to be someone brave enough to do it, brave enough to speak up and have the right reasonings of doing it."