Never one to shy away from discussions of race, race relations, or racial identity politics (listen to "Hold You Down" for a brief primer), Childish Gambino again tackled some weighty issues early Thursday morning (August 14). This time, his method was poetry, and his medium was Twitter.
Donald posted a lengthy string of tweets, touching on an array of subjects, from white privilege to the music industry to the public's perception of young black males. He tweeted that he wrote the poem "after hearing a friend sobbing and after talking with my mom."
And though he didn't explicitly say so, the piece seems to be inspired, at least in some way, by the recent death of 18-year-old Mike Brown, who was shot and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri over the weekend, as well as the subsequent reactions -- of the public, police, and media -- to the tragic incident. He also is critical of "twitter activism," potentially a response to hashtags, such as #IfTheyGunnedMeDown, which have become popular in the aftermath of the shooting.
Read the poem below:
"childish gambino is a white rapper”
i wanna be a white rapper.
i wanna be so white im the biggest rapper of all time.
i wanna be so white i can have a number one song with cursing and parents are fine with it.
i wanna be so white and so big i get eat dinner with the koch brothers.
i hope I'm so big and white i can go to clippers games and it not be a statement.
i hope I'm so white they let my friend out of jail sooner.
i hope I'm so big and white my cousin wasn’t shot and stabbed twice in the neck twice last month.
i wanna be so big. so white.
i wanna be so big and and so white that white dads feel comfortable sending their daughters,
who are home for the summer from Stanford, to my show.
and after the performance they come hang with me on my bus and we smoke and then we f--k to young dro
and she holds my face in her hands and her eyes roll back in her head.
then she goes home and her dad says “how was the show?” and she says “it was fun. they had lasers.”
i hope i become so big and and so white that G-Eazy will say “damn, this n---a is white” and everyone will agree and nod.
i want to be so big and white that people are scared. “what if this spreads?
what if everyone starts to get big and white? what if this works for everyone and everyone can experience this whiteness and this bigness?”
i hope i become too big and too white.
but i am just a black male.
i am a n---a.
The Georgia native hopped back on his account on Thursday afternoon to clarify that his word weren't written hastily, and again attempt to hammer home his points.