Elton John Leads Stars Denouncing Rapper DaBaby for Comparing Those With HIV To ‘Junkies On The Street’

 
elton johd, dababy

Kevin Winter, Paras Griffin/Getty Images

Elton John went after rapper DaBaby for comments he made on “fucking AIDS” and his “gay fans” during his set at Rolling Loud Miami over the weekend.

“If you didn’t show up today with HIV, AIDS, any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that’ll make you die in two or three weeks, put your cellphone light up,” DaBaby said on stage this weekend, later adding, “Ladies, if your pussy smell like water, put your cellphone light up. Fellas, if you ain’t sucking dick in the parking lot, put your cellphone light up.”

The rapper later attempted to apologize for the rant, claiming his words were “twisted,” but continued to make statements many considered offensive and homophobic.

“Me and all my fans at the show, the gay ones and the straight ones, we turnt the fuck up,” he said. “I said, ‘If you don’t got AIDS, put a cellphone light up.’ I said, ‘If you ain’t suck a n***a dick in the parking lot, put your cellphones light up.’ So I could drop my next song. I wasn’t going on no rant.”

“All the lights went up, gay or straight,” he continued. “You wanna know why? Because even my gay fans don’t got fucking AIDS, stupid ass n***as. They don’t got AIDS. My gay fans, they take care of themselves. They ain’t got no nasty gay n***as, see what I’m saying? They ain’t no junkies on the street.”

DaBaby’s initial remarks, as well as his explanation, quickly garnered a backlash from celebrities, who condemned the rapper for fueling stereotypes surrounding HIV and the LGBTQ+ community.

John, founder of the Elton John AIDS Foundation charity, took to Twitter on Wednesday to denounce DaBaby and correct the misinformation the rapper spewed in his onstage rant:

“We’ve been shocked to read about the HIV misinformation and homophobic statements made at a recent DaBaby show,” John wrote. “This fuels stigma and discrimination and is the opposite of what our world needs to fight the AIDS epidemic.”

John went on to note that “HIV has affected over 70 million people globally,” including people of all ages, genders, and sexual orientations.

“In America, a gay black man has a 50% lifetime chance of contracting HIV,” he added. “Stigma and shame around HIV and homosexuality is a huge driver of this vulnerability. We need to break down the myths and judgments and not fuel these.”

The legendary singer and pianist pointed out that many people live “a long and healthy life with HIV,” adding, “Treatment is so advanced that with one pill a day, HIV can become undetectable in your body so you can’t pass it onto other people.”

“Homophobic and HIV mistruths have no place in our society and industry and as musicians, we must spread compassion and love for the most marginalised people in our communities,” he concluded. “A musician’s job is to bring people together.”

Several other stars have taken aim at DaBaby, including Queer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness, who has opened up on his own experiences living with HIV.

“The stigma of HIV/AIDS is what is killing folks & it’s spread by this kind of misinformation that then people go believe,” he wrote with the hashtag #UequalsU, which means “undetectable equals untransmittable.”

Dua Lipa, who features DaBaby in her song “Levitating,” also posted to her Instagram stories to decry the rapper’s comments:

“I really don’t recognise this as the person I worked with,” she wrote. “I know my fans know where my heart lies and that I stand 100 percent with the LGTBQ community. We need to come together to fight the stigma and ignorance around HIV/AIDS.”

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