Iggy Azalea Responds To Macklemore & "White Privilege II" With Anger But She's Only Half Right
No matter how you feel about Macklemore, and specifically his new song, I'm sure it didn't escape your attention that he called out several of his fellow artists in the new track, released Jan. 22. And one of those artists, Iggy Azalea, is responding to Macklemore's diss in "White Privilege II". But while I absolutely understand wanting to fire back at a song that publicly accuses you by name of cultural appropriation, Azalea is only half right in her indignant response. But we'll get to that.
First let's talk about what it is she's actually responding to. In the song, which has already divided listeners over whether the rapper is legitimately working to be a better ally or just whitesplaining, Macklemore casually drops in this lyric:
You're Miley, you're Elvis, you're Iggy Azalea
Fake and so plastic, you've heisted the magic
You've taken the drums and the accent you rapped in
You're branded 'hip-hop,' it's so fascist and backwards.
Strong words for sure, but honestly, none that I can argue with. Miley Cyrus has been under fire for years now for exploitation of black culture, and Azelea has repeatedly been cited for the same thing: cherry-picking the elements of a culture she wants to layer over her own personality and performances. It's been so extreme that she's allegedly lost relationships over it, notably her working relationship with T.I., who had helped jump start her career, but severed ties with Azalea after remarks made during her very public feud with Azalea Banks. So I would say Macklemore has plenty of justification to throw Iggy's name into the ring as an example, which is why her response to the dis doesn't seem entirely on point to me.
OK sure, it's hypocritical of Macklemore to be nice to your face, and then blow up your spot in a song. If he's serious about actually being an ally in curbing privilege, he definitely could've used some of those face-to-face opportunities to give Azalea and in-person heads up that her behavior wasn't OK. We could all be better about having those uncomfortable conversations, honestly. But that said, how many people telling you that cultural appropriation is an issue is it gonna take before you do something about it, Iggy?
I guess at the end of the day, I don't have a ton of sympathy for someone being so surprised that Macklemore felt this way, even if he did reveal that information in the opportunistic and very public format of putting it in a brand new single.