A racially charged police case in New York has fuelled a storm between hip hop artists, with white Aussie star Iggy Azalea rejecting charges that she has ignored African American concerns.
New York-raised rapper Azealia Banks took Azalea to task for not immediately raising her voice after a grand jury on Wednesday declined to charge a white police officer in the choking death of a black man.
It is “funny to see people like Igloo Australia silent when these things happen,” Banks, who is black, wrote on Twitter. “Black Culture is cool, but black issues sure aren’t huh?”
its funny to see people Like Igloo Australia silent when these things happen… Black Culture is cool, but black issues sure aren’t huh?
鈥?CATTY NOIR (@AZEALIABANKS) December 4, 2014
Azalea later wrote that the issue was the US “racist justice system and police force” and asked her 3.3 million Twitter followers to “sign petitions, hit the streets and protest or donate to groups helping to support and rebuild the community too”.
Theres more to sparking a change than trolling on social media. World issues shouldnt be used as a poor excuse to promote fan battles.
鈥?IGGY AZALEA (@IGGYAZALEA) December 4, 2014
There is “more to sparking a change than trolling on social media. World issues shouldn’t be used as a poor excuse to promote fan battles,” she wrote in an indirect reply to Banks.
Underlying the feud, Azalea has faced dismay from some hip hop purists for her rapid rise. She won the trophy for favourite hip hop artist at the American Music Awards and is predicted to receive Grammy nominations when they are announced Friday.
Born in Australia, Azalea moved to the United States as a teenager to develop her career and raps in the accent of Southern US hip hop.
“Why do you imitate us in such a way that I feel like you are actually making fun of us?” Banks wrote on Twitter.
Many other hip hop artists took to social media to voice outrage about the lack of charges over the killing of Eric Garner, who died after a white police officer put him in a chokehold while arresting him for selling untaxed cigarettes.
The grand jury decision came after another white police officer escaped charges for shooting to death unarmed African American teenager Michael Brown in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson.
The feud has been met with mixed reactions on social media:
Azaliea banks reminds me a lot of lil kim. She seems to be bitter & jealous that iggy has had more success than her.
鈥?THE PINKPRINT 12.15 (@wesleyyminaj) December 4, 2014
Didn鈥檛 azalea banks just say black people didn鈥檛 have culture like half a year ago? So what is she talking about now?
鈥?Aunt Jemima (@TieMyDuragBoo) December 4, 2014
Azalea Banks just doesn’t know when to leave it alone. We were right there with you about Iggy, but now you’re victim blaming.
鈥?X (@XLNB) December 4, 2014
Notice Iggy Azalea finially speaks about world issues after @AZEALIABANKS Banks called her out on it???
鈥?winona forever (@standbythebody) December 4, 2014