Waka Flocka Flame is speaking about the stigma against Black men and being emotional. Historically, it has been hard for many Black men to be open and honest about their true feelings and emotions for many reasons. The underlying fear of being labeled a homosexual or anything less than “manly” may be the number one factor. Recently, the former rapper appeared on the It’s Tricky With Raquel Harper podcast to speak on the subject.
Waka Flocka Flame held an in-depth conversation with Raquel Harper, where he was open and honest on a bevy of talks. During their chat, the “No Hands” rapper talked about how he treats the young men he’s been developing as artists. Waka stressed that they look at him as a “big brother” figure, knowing that they can seek him for things outside of money. It is within their culture to freely and openly express their love for one another while inquiring about each other’s mental being.
“It’s bigger than just the money, bro,” the BET Hip Hop Award-winning rapper explained.
He then expressed his frequent thoughts as to whether or not people would accept him if he was not doing too well in his life, mentally, despite what his outward appearance looked like. In addition, Waka Flocka Flame admitted to Harper that he’s witnessed how people have “tried” to treat him, although at times, “it could just be in your head.”
Waka then took the conversation a bit deeper. He confessed that he entered a very dark period in his life before his brother’s unfortunate decision to take his own life in December of 2013. Although his many supporters saw his incredible success, they did not see the internal struggle he faced to fight for his own life. The Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta star explained that he would wake up feeling like an imposter every day. Not only did he feel he was living as “something he was not,” but he shared that drugs were his “best friend.”
All of this could have been alleviated if the former rapper’s perception, or the narrative he’d adopted along with many other Black men, was different. Waka Flocka explains that growing up, “You can’t be no Black [man] in your feelings.” He follows up with a hard truth that many Black men face, which may, in fact, not be true about them: “Immediately, that makes you gay.”
It is an unfortunate truth, which he reaffirms by saying he doesn’t care if anyone decides to dispute him. Waka Flocka states that his intention is not to be “homophobic.” Instead, he is shedding light on the fear that Black men have of being labeled “soft” when the perception usually is otherwise.
Instead of addressing the emotions that Black men and young boys face, they are given dismissive actions. “Get over it.” “Man the up.” “Real men don’t cry” or “Boys don’t cry” are all examples of the dismissive rhetoric given. “Roll up” is another that Waka Flocka shares. The former rapper stressed that topics surrounding mental health need to be emphasized more on a whole.
Interestingly, Waka Flocka has come under fire for comments that have been labeled homophobic in the past. While interviewing with The Breakfast Club in 2015, Waka revealed some thoughts that seemingly spoke against the trans community. Complex reports him stating that he has “nothing against people’s preferences” but felt that certain “evil” things were being “marketed,” calling it “crazy.”
Waka Flocka faced incredible backlash following the interview, which led him to explain his stance in a series of since-deleted tweets. He claimed to have nothing against the LGBTQIA community and stressed that he was “not homophobic” but insisted his words were taken out of context. Furthermore, he apologized for using certain words and admitted that it was “wrong.” The former rapper also apologized to everyone who was offended.
On another occasion, Waka Flocka appeared on IG Live to speak against homosexual men who compliment him. He stated that he was “not with all that” and called it “extra,” “disrespectful,” and “out of pocket.”
Despite the past, Waka Flocka has turned a new leaf regarding his views after his step daughter recently revealed that she’s has an interest in men and women. On an episode of their reality show, the former rapper expressed his support for his stepdaughter. Following the episode, Waka Flocka was inundated with criticism for supporting Charlie. This provoked him to post on social media to reveal that he did not understand the backlash while stressing that he is “not phobic” of the LGBT+ community. However, he shared, “I’m gonna support my daughter.”