*Macklemore, being a successful white rapper, was asked to weigh in on the rise of Iggy Azalea and her ongoing beef with Azealia Banks.
The artist declined to explicitly criticize Azalea while on Hot 97’s “Ebro in the Morning” show Tuesday, but the Grammy winner did say that white rappers need to respect and understand their place in a predominantly black culture.
“You need to know your place in the culture,” the “Thrift Shop” rapper said. “Are you contributing or are you taking? Are you using it for your own advantage or are you contributing to the culture? And that’s subjective, right? That’s completely subjective. But I think it’s clear who’s contributing and who’s taking.”
Macklemore, no stranger to being criticized for cultural appropriation, stressed the need to remember this as more white rap artists emerge: “I saw a tweet that said, ‘Hip-hop was birthed out of the civil rights movement.’ This is a culture that came from pain. That came from oppression. That came from white oppression. It’s a byproduct of that. Again we can say we’ve evolved, that we’ve come a long way since the late ’70s and early ’80s, but we haven’t. You can’t disregard that. Just because there’s been more white rappers, just because there’s been more successful white rappers, you cannot disregard where this culture came from and our place in it as white people.”