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Like many celebrities who wrongly employ the phrase as a means of evading responsibility for their actions, A$AP Rocky doesn’t seem to know exactly what “taken out of context” means. There are not many ways to interpret, “What the f–k am I, Al Sharpton now? I’m A$AP Rocky. I did not sign up to be no political activist.” It’s a sentiment as clear as the color of the sky in Los Angeles on a relatively smogless day.

The same goes for the rest of the quote: “I wanna talk about my motherf–kin’ lean, my best friend dying, the girls that come in and out of my life, the jiggy fashion that I wear, my new inspirations in drugs! I don’t wanna talk about no f–king Ferguson and s–t because I don’t live over there! I live in f–king Soho and Beverly Hills. I can’t relate. I’m in the studio; I’m in these fashion studios; I’m in these bitches’ drawers. I’m not doing anything outside of that. That’s my life.”

Some of us knew of his 2015 TimeOut interview when it was first published. Despite Rocky’s claim in an interview Wednesday with Power 105.1’s The Breakfast Club, reading the TimeOut interview in full will do little to alleviate any frustrations with his thought process. And before that radio interview, the Harlem rapper, who now lives in “f–king Soho and Beverly Hills,” said something equally clueless while speaking before the Debate Society of Oxford University. During that conversation, Rocky said, “Why are we exploiting the beef between the urban community and the police force when 60 people got shot on a Friday and Saturday [on a July 2014 holiday weekend] in Chicago in black-on-black crime?”

A$AP Rocky’s issue is not that he was misquoted or that his remarks were received differently than intended; it’s that his words have come back to haunt him several months later. They haunt him because as state-sanctioned violence against black people in this country continues to happen, those who enjoy a platform but do not advocate on behalf of black people are widely viewed as part of the problem. In his more recent radio interview, Rocky did not so much offer clarity about previous comments made as he tried to parse his words.

In his initial response to the social media pile-on, he took to Twitter to take shots at those finding the TimeOut interview late, though he did now acknowledge “all this social injustice makes me f–king sick, tho I’m still no politician.”

Read the rest at The Root.

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During a recent appearance on The View, Leslie Jones got emotional as she honored Whoopi Goldberg for the impact the legendary comedian had on her life. While many of us will continue to boo, hiss, and roll our eyes at Goldberg’s bewildering opinions on race and racism expressed on the show, in that moment, Jones’ remarks reminded everyone of how impactful a figure the legendary comedian is and why. As Jones very earnestly told Goldberg, “I love you for what you’ve done for black women, I love you for what you’ve done for black comedians, and I love you.”

As moving as it was to hear Jones note how she can now replicate Goldberg’s influence via little black girls watching her in the reboot of Ghostbusters, events that have happened before and after the premiere have proven just how poorly treated female entertainers who look like Leslie Jones and Whoopi Goldberg still are. Take for instance, Jones’ revelation that no designer wanted to dress her for the film’s premiere. Fortunately, designer Christian Siriano, who makes a habit of dressing famous women of all shapes and sizes, stepped in once Jones made her complaints public. And when he was met with a river of kudos, Siriano took to Twitter to make something clear: “It shouldn’t be exceptional to work with brilliant people just because they’re not sample size. Congrats aren’t in order, a change is.”

Indeed. While this is one example of all’s well that ends well, the reality remains that Jones, “not sample size,” tall, and dark-skinned, continues to contend with varying forms of prejudice. Fame and fortune can change many things about one’s life, but if you are black, even those novelties have limitations. Money and name recognition has not shielded Jones from barriers rooted in racism because white supremacy still marginalizes anyone who is not white and who does not live up to white standards of beauty. And now more than ever can those reminders be serviced to you instantaneously and consistently by way of social media.

On Monday, Jones used her Twitter profile to highlight the racism she has been bombarded with due to her role in Ghostbusters. Jones was berated with epithets, stereotypes, and every other fixture of American racism that is typically associated with the black experience. Whereas Jones’ remarks to Whoopi Goldberg warmed my heart last week, her tweet about her feelings in light of the barrage of online racist attacksbroke it.

“I feel like I’m in a personal hell. I didn’t do anything to deserve this. It’s just too much. It shouldn’t be like this. So hurt right now,” Jones wrote.

I noticed that the first response under this tweet was from Siriano, who referred to Jones as a gem. She very much is that, and even if you do differ from that opinion, at the very least, she is deserving of basic human decency. Others joined Siriano in pouring love under Jones’ acknowledgment of pain, but make no mistake: the pain is evident.

That’s why with respect to some of the writeups about Jones’ ordeal on Twitter, I found the depiction of her tweets peculiar. As some have also pointed out, Jones did not “bust” her detractors and she didn’t exactly “put them in their place” either. The intent behind these categorizations are well-meaning. Nonetheless, this is not about Jones speaking from a place of strength, or frankly, playing into the “strong black woman” narrative.

Read the rest at Complex.

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If systemic racism employed the services of a carnival barker, that person would sound exactly like former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani. A fusion of buffoonery and bigotry, there are only two things Giuliani is known for when speaking to the media: invoking 9/11 and bashing Black people whenever news of racism and state-sanctioned violence hits. Speaking at the Republican National Convention on Monday night, Giuliani called for racial unity, saying “It’s time to make America one again: one America. What happened to: ‘There’s no black America. There’s no white America, there is just America?'” The irony, of course, is that Giuliani himself is responsible for perpetuating systemic racism.

One recent example of this is Giuliani’s appearance on CBS’ Face The Nation.

Though Giuliani feigned sympathy for the plight of the Black experience in America, he quickly opted to dismiss those who seek to improve it as he categorized the Black Lives Matter movement—which advocates against police brutality and calls for criminal justice reform—as “inherently racist.” Giuliani then went on to offer the thoughtless critique, “If you want to protect Black lives, then you’ve got to protect Black lives not just against police.”

Of course, this is typical Giuliani. In 2014, he said the following about the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown during an appearance on Meet The Press: “The fact is that I find it very disappointing that you’re not discussing the fact that 93 percent of Blacks in America are killed by other blacks. We are talking about the significant exception here [in the Brown case]. I’d like to see the attention paid to that that you are paying to this.”

Giuliani has repeated this sentiment whenever he has been called to appear on television to discuss unarmed Black people dying at the hands of the police—which is not that significant an exception given the additional lives that have been lost since Brown’s death. Even so, Americans have one of the highest murder rates in the industrialized world. And although we don’t have more actual crime than other wealthy nations, we have more violent crime specifically because we have greater access to guns. Of that violent crime, murder in America is largely intraracial as 90 percent of Black Americans are killed by other Black Americans and 83 percent of white Americans are killed by other white Americans.

Giuliani, as Jamelle Bouie once noted for Slate, “does not know crime as well as he thinks.” What Giuliani does know, however, is racism (stoking white fear of Blacks) for the purpose of campaigning and racist policy (the implementation of “stop and frisk”) when governing.

To wit, Giuliani went on to say on Face The Nation: “If I were a Black father and I was concerned about the safety of my child, really concerned about it and not in a politically activist sense, I would say be very respectful to the police, most of them are good, some can be very bad and just be very careful. I’d also say be very careful of those kids in the neighborhood, don’t get involved with them because son, there’s a 99 percent chance they’re going to kill you not the police.”

And of course, Giuliani blamed Black culture for racial tensions, claiming, “They sing rap songs about killing police officers and they talk about killing police officers and they yell it out at their rallies.”

This recalls Giuliani’s criticism of U.S. President Barack Obama in 2015, when he argued, “He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up, through love of this country.” Yeah, Giuliani’s dad was a mob enforcer who, along with his five brothers, all avoided military service during World War II. And since we’re on child-rearing, the reality is, when Giuliani’s daughter Caroline Giuliani was arrested for shoplifting in 2010she didn’t have to worry about dying in a prison cell like Sandra Bland. Instead, she was leisurely escorted out of the store while Bland, an unarmed black woman arrested during a traffic stop, was found hanged in her jail cell under mysterious circumstances. Bland’s arresting officer was later charged with perjury, but there were no indictments related to her death.

The same goes for the many, many Black men and women have been absolutely respectful to police and have subsequently died—like the very Black men who were gunned down by police that netted Giuliani yet another unfortunate booking on a national platform.

Read the rest at Complex.

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Bless Justin Timberlake’s vanilla-flavored heart. In the year of LEMONADE, he’s only now realizing that it’s a new day — a time in which the things he says that the kids would describe as “problematic” won’t just float away unquestioned.

To wit, moments after Timberlake said he was “#Inspired” by remarks made by actor/activist Jesse Williams celebrating blackness and decrying cultural appropriation at this year’s BET Awards, a few Twitter users felt similarly inspired to inform the pop singer that they had not forgotten his trifling past. One tweet yielded an actual response from the *NSYNC heartthrob turned pop star: “So does this mean you’re going to stop appropriating our music and culture? And apologize to Janet too.”

Timberlake responded, though all he did was confirm that he likely missed key points made by Williams (while coming very close to echoing “all lives matter” rhetoric): “Oh, you sweet soul. The more you realize that we are the same, the more we can have a conversation. Bye.”

Then came more eye-roll-inducing tweets. Like the one where he plays at being the victim: “I feel misunderstood. I responded to a specific tweet that wasn’t meant to be a general response. I shouldn’t have responded anyway…”

Or the one where he opts for a patronizing tone rather than a sincere display of humility: “I forget this forum sometimes… I was truly inspired by @iJesseWilliams speech because I really do feel that we are all one… A human race.” (Again with the “all lives” mindset.)

And of course the one where he offers a weak apology: “I apologize to anyone that felt I was out of turn. I have nothing but LOVE FOR YOU AND ALL OF US. –JT”

As mighty white as all this sounds, I don’t believe cultural appropriation is the fundamental issue here. A Southern white boy from Memphis being into R&B isn’t surprising or remarkable in any meaningful way. The same goes for any child born in the 1980s who was inspired by the two of the biggest artists of that era: Michael Jackson and Prince. The white boy making music inspired by black art isn’t what’s wrong with Timberlake. It has little to do with why he enrages many of us at times.

What’s grating about Timberlake and white entertainers like him is that, for all their fandom as it relates to black culture, they don’t seem to give much of a damn about the black people who created that culture and continue to keep it alive and fresh. And, to make matters worse, these entertainers typically benefit and profit from our culture more than we ever do. The problem with people like Timberlake is that they will use their white feet and dance to Michael Jackson-indebted steps only to run back to their ivory towers when convenient.

In Timberlake’s case, this would be February 2004, in the hours that followed his Super Bowl performance with Janet Jackson—the one in which Timberlake pulled at her costume to reveal her breast on live TV. Though both apologized, Timberlake did so as if he had absolutely no idea what was intended to happen during that set—opting instead to place most of the onus on Jackson.

Jackson told Oprah Winfrey that she felt Timberlake left her hanging “to a certain degree.” Only years later would Timberlake admit to this in interview with Entertainment Weekly, saying, “I wish I had supported Janet more. I am not sorry I apologized, but I wish I had been there more for Janet.”

Timberlake used Jackson’s celebrity to increase his own, and then used his privilege as a white man to let the black woman take the fall for an incident that involved both of them. Many of us will never forget or forgive what he did to Janet Jackson because it’s a reminder of how little capital black people have in this country—even if you’re as popular and as influential a star as Janet Damita Jo Jackson.

Read the rest at Complex.

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While there is no confirmation about reports that the entire cast of Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta has been fired, I do know that after the latest season of the hit reality series, something’s gotta give. For years now, LHHATL has been my favorite Negro telenovela, but I’m not enjoying it as much as I used to. Like, watching the last 12 episodes has been the equivalent of arriving at the fish fry hungry, only to be served cold pieces of tilapia (I prefer hot fried catfish, FYI).

Let’s gather ’round and count the mistakes:

1. Way too much focus on the King family.

Make no mistake: LHHATL is still a hit series and, for many of us, a viewing ritual. However, it’s very easy to go from “I plan around this show” to “Oh, girl, let the DVR catch it.” (This means you, Empireseason 2.) To be fair, I believed that the franchise needed new players, but that does not mean we needed to be bombarded with their personal problems mere seconds into the new season.

We went from a very long first date to shacking up within months. Now I feel kidnapped by them. Though the King family seems interesting—America’s Most Wanted alum, baby mama drama, psycho girlfriends—why have we spent so much time on these new folks? And what kills me about this is that in the end, most of them won’t be back next season. Scrapp Deleon is in prison, and his mama is facing 30 years for identity theft. So all of that was for naught.

Put some money on their books and put Tommie in anger management. Then be done with them. God bless or whatever.

2. D. Smith should just go back to producing.

I was quite excited about the idea of a transgender woman being on the show, but what’s most interesting about this season of the show is that although there’s been interesting, progressive conversations about gender and sexuality, D. Smith hasn’t been involved in most of them. D. Smith had every right to be offended by Waka Flocka’s transphobic comments, but her questioning his wife, Tammy Rivera, turned into a real-life back-and-forth fight in the comments section of the Shade Room.

Listen, D. Smith has major credits, but on this here franchise, Tammy Rivera and she are co-workers—and Tammy has a higher job title. I do find it fascinating that trans people get to be like everyone else on the show—aka an almost-villainlike character—but other than that, D. Smith has been depicted as just unnecessarily combative. There could have been some good conversations about tolerance and subtle forms of bigotry, but again, they were lost in the petty sauce.

As for those actual, progressive conversations I was referring to, those honors go to Mimi’s ex, Chris. I’m not sure Chris identifies as genderqueer, but that was essentially the breakdown given. Some of the best scenes of this show consisted of Mimi, Chris and Ariel discussing sexuality and gender identity on a couch over wine they probably got from Target. And that’s no shade. Target has a decent selection.

Read the rest at The Root.

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On Tuesday, a typical, but no less still unnecessarily combative, Omarosa Manigault spoke with MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts about her role in the orgy of audacious idiocy and political amateurism known as the Donald J. Trump for President campaign.

As Omarosa spoke very seriously about an unserious person, I noticed that she was listed as the “Vice Chair of Donald Trump’s National Diversity Coalition.” Who knew such a thing existed? After I stopped laughing, I watched a noticeably ticked off Omarosa shoo, shoo away Roberts’ question about her referring to herself as Trump’s “Valerie Jarrett” in a Washington Post interview that ran earlier this month.

Omarosa claimed the statement was “paraphrased,” but what sticks out most about that interview is the logic she employed to validate her involvement in Trump’s increasingly polarizing campaign.

Although Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks says Omarosa “doesn’t represent the campaign in an official capacity,” she is undoubtedly one of Trump’s strongest surrogates. So, why would a black woman voluntarily speak on behalf of the political ambitions of a man whose ideology is marinated in at least three forms of bigotry? According to Omarosa, “I’m the person who pulls him back when he goes too far.”

Since anyone paying attention can confirm that that is not going especially well, again, why be a part of this campaign in any fashion?

Omarosa says that while she can elect to leave “the room,” i.e., the place where key decisions for the campaign are made, there is a reason she sticks around. To Omarosa, “anyone that thinks we don’t need to be in those rooms is naive.” It takes a lot of confidence to speak in condescension, but confidence alone doesn’t make dubious statements any more convincing than they actually are.

To her credit, Omarosa is quite adept at sounding like actions done out of self-interest are rooted in principle. In this instance, that would be the belief that Donald J. Trump would make a capable president and that she’s involved to make sure he places his best foot forward in convincing a skeptical public of that reality. Unfortunately, I am not one who has ever fallen for the GOP illusion that businesspeople are uniquely qualified to hold elected office. However, even if Omarosa did genuinely believe that Trump would make a better president than Hillary Rodham Clinton, her statement is rooted in a belief that being present matters more than it has largely ever proven to be with Republicans.

That’s why Omarosa’s assertions are not particularly new. There are plenty of blacks, Latinos, women and members of the LGBT community who work with Republicans who would make the same argument. However, what did Michael Steele’s run as the head of the Republican National Committee do as far as getting Republicans to be more respectful toward black voters? It certainly did not get the bulk of them in Congress to have any more urgency in restoring the Voting Rights Act. Likewise, it did not get many Republicans to skip the bad habit of being grossly disrespectful to our nation’s first black president.

When it comes to women’s rights, the GOP gets an F. Actually, the party gets an F and a U, but you get it. The same grade is assigned for its record on LGBT rights, though oddly enough, Trump is arguably the most progressive Republican presidential candidate on the LGBT community by the very low barometer that is merely acknowledging us without complete contempt. As for Latinos, the bulk of the Republican Party has worked to actively thwart immigration reform for years. Couple that with Republican primary voters electing a man who wants to build a “big, beautiful wall” along the Mexican border, and sorry to inform Latino Republicans, but they don’t love ya, girl.

Read the rest at The Root.

 

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As common as death by gun in America is, the hand that holds the gun often defines how those deaths are depicted. So it was not surprising to see the kind of reaction generated by one man being killed and three people being wounded at a T.I. concert in New York City recently. It concerned black people and, thus, was seemingly more frightening and dastardly to select people.

That would include New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, who used the incident to depict rappers as “basically thugs” in a subsequent radio interview. Bratton went on to say, “The crazy world of these so-called rap artists, who are basically thugs that basically celebrate violence they did all their lives, and unfortunately that violence oftentimes manifests itself during their performances, and that’s exactly what happened last evening.”

It is hilariously ironic that the person in charge of the New York City Police Department wants to talk about purported bad culture that manifests into unnecessary violence. Bratton is right to remain blindly ignorant and drowning in his own pool of hypocrisy, but it’s unfortunate that others who ought to know better failed to show up. In response to that shooting, the behemoth concert company Live Nation announced that it was postponing or canceling multiple rap concerts.

In a statement, Jim Yeager, a spokesman for Live Nation, explained: “In light of last week’s tragic events, we are acting with an overabundance of caution and coordinating a going-forward strategy with the New York Police Department that may also include a curfew. Because these discussions with the NYPD are ongoing, we will be postponing a few of our upcoming shows at Irving Plaza and the Gramercy.”

The NYPD denied this, with a spokeswoman for the department declaring, “The organization’s decision to cancel the event was in no way influenced by the NYPD.”

Whom shall we believe? The concert company that has to rely on the assistance of local police departments for their events, or the Police Department with a commissioner depicting entertainers—majorly black, by the way—of being “basically thugs” and into the “gangster lifestyle”? Spoiler alert: The Fader reported that a source with knowledge of the situation confirmed that the NYPD issued a “strong advisory” to one New York-area venue to can its hip-hop shows.

As one promoter, Shabazz Varnie, explained to the magazine, “Police give the venues problems,” noting that the NYPD can also “push for promoters to get extra security in order for the show to go on, which isn’t cheap.”

Their vigilance to “protect and serve” would be acceptable if it weren’t reeking of duplicity.

You can get shot anywhere in America. You can get shot in a neighborhood ravaged by a level of violence only immense poverty and a failure to address it can produce. You can get shot at a college or university, a high school, a middle school, or an elementary school. You can get shot at a movie theater at the hands of a soulless person with easy access to firearms. You can get shot at a Wal-Mart or on a sidewalk for no other reason than being black and breathing. Ask Bill Bratton about that last one.

Read the rest at The Root.

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It happened when Michael Jackson died. It happened shortly after Whitney Houston’s death. It happened to Prince after he died suddenly. It has since happened to Muhammad Ali. I fear it will be a fate met one day by the likes of Beyoncé, Steph Curry, Rihanna, and LeBron James.

“It” is when white media exalts fallen Black public figures for “transcending race” in an attempt to honor them.

“It” will never not be disingenuous. It will always be another superficial attempt to address racism. It will always be a glib statement earning the rightful eyeroll of Black people everywhere.

One problem with the notion of “transcending race” is that it immediately connotes that being Black is some sort of barrier. Why does one need to transcend who they are? This turn of phrase is meant as a compliment, but it is anything but. It is a well-meaning—but no less dishonest—way of describing Black men and women who have accomplished so much in the face of adversity.

Why does one need to “transcend” their Blackness for mainstream a.k.a. white consumption? When I hear well-meaning white folks write or utter this phrase, I can’t help but chuckle at how self-absorbed they’re being. Instead, they should say ,“I got over my own biases” and embraced X Black celebrity.

Be real, beloved, and spare us the bullshit.

All of the aforementioned Black celebrities were unapologetically Black. Moreover, none of them ever escaped the systemically unfair battle against any living, breathing, and especially thriving Black person.

Read the rest at Complex.

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When it comes to the subgenre of punditry best described as “crotchety, delusional conservative white man,” Pat Buchanan has long been its shining star. To Buchanan’s credit, he’s been consistently curmudgeonly about America’s shifting demographics for decades. In 1992 Buchanan infamously spoke of a “culture war” plaguing the United States during a speech at that year’s Republican convention. In Buchanan’s mind, the Democratic Party represented a bunch of abortion-loving, feminism-peddling, “homosexual rights”-advocating deviants. His answer to the crowd was that “we must take back our cities and take back our culture and take back our country.”

And unlike Ms. Lauryn Hill, Buchanan does not need new arrangements to perform his act. No, his political rhetoric is basically Mary J. Blige’s onstage dancing. To wit, Buchanan recently wrote an unintentionally hilarious essay about “the social disaster of white Middle America.” In the essay, entitled “The Great White Hope,” Buchanan laments a purported crisis among “middle-aged white folks” that, he says, consists of growing numbers of cases of “alcoholic liver disease, overdoses of heroin and opioids, and suicides.”

Buchanan’s explanation for this is twofold. In one instance he discusses white working-class voters being victims of depreciating wages and a lack of available jobs because of globalization. Typically, if Buchanan told me the sky was blue, I’d go outside with my phone to take a shot of the blood-orange moon that’s clearly more than likely to be present, but hey, there is some level of truth there.

Unfortunately, “Project Pat” then attributes the drug use, alcoholism and suicide rates to shrinking numbers of married white men. To Project Pat, “single white men are not only being left behind by the new economy, they are becoming alienated from society.” Moreover, the “world has been turned upside-down for white children.”

In this man’s mind, this is evidenced by select history books saying that America was “‘discovered’ by genocidal white racists, who murdered the native peoples of color, enslaved Africans to do the labor they refused to do, then went out and brutalized and colonized indigenous peoples all over the world.”

So, the crux of his complaints about education policy is that American children are being told the truth about the history of this nation. Whatever will these poor white kids do (well, besides continue to enjoy the perks of being white in a society that caters to white people)? Project Pat proceeds to argue that a call for diversity is meant to marginalize white people. If you really want to laugh, he also complains that “angry white male” is now “an acceptable slur in culture and politics.”

“N–ger” is a slur; “angry white male” is a pretty solid descriptor for the conservative-media-industrial complex that’s made Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and others millions of dollars.

In any event, Buchanan leaves us with this: “So it is that people of that derided ethnicity, race, and gender see in Donald Trump someone who unapologetically berates and mocks the elites who have dispossessed them, and who despise them. Is it any surprise that militant anti-government groups attract white males? Is it so surprising that the Donald today, like Jess Willard a century ago, is seen by millions as ‘The Great White Hope?’”

Read the rest at The Root.

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Very seldom will you ever find me speaking ill of the legendary Bobby Brown. You’re now reading words from someone who will regularly inform you that if not for the Don’t Be Cruel album, it’s highly unlikely you will have artists like Usher, Trey Songz and Chris Brown. A person, who after finding out “The Kang of R&B” was selling BBQ sauce and fried chicken seasoning, immediately went online to place an order. So, my love of Bobby Brown is pure and everlasting.

However, there is news pouring out from a recent interview that’s troubled me. There are a few things in life I can look past. I pass no judgment on Bobby Brown for recently telling ABC’s Robin Roberts that he once had sex with a ghost is a fine example. Brown’s purported private ghost busting aside, I’m more frustrated that he felt compelled to discuss a long rumored part of his late ex wife’s life.

Speaking with Us Weekly, Brown addressed the outstanding rumor that Whitney Houston had a same-sex relationship with Robyn Crawford. Houston met Crawford as a teen before she ultimately hired Crawford to be her assistant and creative director. Rumors of a romance started in the late 1980s and traveled with the late iconic singer for years. The rumor reached its peak of speculation once Houston went on to join Michael Jackson in the afterlife choir and Crawford spoke with Esquire about their relationship.

In response to stories that Houston was pressured by family members not to see her, Crawford noted, “Nobody kept Whitney from doing anything.” Beyond that, though, there is a subtle gorgeousness to how Crawford speaks of Houston. It is quite clear that whatever their relationship was, it was rooted in love.

Crawford explained: “I have never spoken about her until now. And she knew I wouldn’t. She was a loyal friend and she knew I was never going to be disloyal to her. I was never going to betray her. Now I can’t believe that I’m never going to hug her or hear her laughter again. I loved her laughter and that’s what I miss most, that’s what I miss already.”

And: “I just hope that she wasn’t in pain and that she hadn’t lost hope. She gave so much to so many people; I hope that she felt loved in return. She was the action, for such a long time. She’s out of the action now. I hope she can finally rest.”

This should have been the end of that. No one who was not privy to the intel to confirm the specifics of their relationship deserved nothing more than what Crawford offered. Sadly, Brown has now chimed in, telling Us Weekly that when it comes to Houston and Crawford, “I know. We were married for 14 years. There are some things we talked about that were personal to us.”

Brown, who recently released a memoir, “Every Little Step,” alleges that Houston was bisexual. He told Us, “I’m a man and she was attracted to me!”

Read the rest at VH1.

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