Eminem Faces Protest At VMAs

Sonicnet Music News

Eminem may get the chance to dis fellow performers Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera onstage Thursday at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards, but the rapper will come under fire outside the awards ceremony, where protesters plan to rally against lyrics they see as homophobic and misogynistic.

The rapper leads the pack vying for Moonman statuettes, tying 'NSYNC with six nominations each, including Video Of The Year and Viewer's Choice (see "Eminem, 'NSYNC Lead Video Music Awards Nominees"). The show will air live from New York's Radio City Music Hall at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday.

The 27-year-old rapper has been featured prominently on MTV in the past year, garnering heavy rotation for his "The Real Slim Shady" video and commandeering airtime with his own programming for a special called "EmTV."

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and the National Organization For Women don't believe Eminem (born Marshall Mathers), whose multi-platinum "The Marshall Mathers LP" contains what many perceive to be anti-homosexual rhymes and features a fantasy about the rapper murdering his wife, deserves the media attention.

"These are the words that kids hear in school hallways before they get beat up," GLAAD spokesperson Cathy Renna said of Eminem's lyrics. "For this kind of language to be put out there without any sense of responsibility on Eminem's part -- or on MTV's part -- is simply not something that GLAAD can ignore.... We are very disappointed that they continue to support him as heavily as they do... including a plum spot on the video awards."

"Don't take everything I say literally," Eminem said shortly after the album's debut, when furor over his lyrics mounted. "I might say some things that are kinda left field, but that doesn't mean that every single thing that I say, I mean. I may tend to push a lot of buttons and piss a lot of people off -- a lot of critics, and a lot of people who don't really know hip-hop. But that's, basically, what I came to do is upset that balance of everything that's normal, [of] everyday things that people are used to hearin'."

The rapper's spokespeople could not be reached for comment on the protests at press time.

Catch all the sizzlin', star-packed VMA action direct from Miami on August 28. MTV News' preshow kicks things off at 6:30 p.m. ET/PT, followed by big show at 8 p.m.

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