What Russell Simmons—the Oprah-like deified figure of hip hop—says, goes.
And this week Russell is saying a lot about the future of LGBT artists in a genre previously (and still quite) hostile to the community, thanks to Frank Ocean.
In a blog posted to Global Grind that works on the same emotion-producing organ we had to have implanted as Frank's coming out statement, Russell writes:
Today is a big day for hip-hop. It is a day that will define who we really are. How compassionate will we be? How loving can we be? How inclusive are we?
I am profoundly moved by the courage and honesty of Frank Ocean. Your decision to go public about your sexual orientation gives hope and light to so many young people still living in fear. These types of secrets should not matter anymore, but we know they do, and because of that I decided to write this short statement of support for one of the greatest new artists we have.
In an immediate sign that Russell might be right, Tyler, The Creator, known for virulently homophobic lyrics, issued a tweet in support of his Odd Futures co-member:
"My Big Brother Finally Fucking Did That. Proud Of That Nigga Cause I Know That Shit Is Difficult Or Whatever."
(Source and image: Global Grind)