A lyric about slain teen Trayvon Martin is landing Rick Ross in trouble, but the rapper said the controversy is all the result of a misunderstanding.
Ross’ sixth studio album, Mastermind, was made available for streaming on Tuesday night. In the track “Blk & Wht” listeners caught the reference to Martin, the Florida teenager killed two years ago by George Zimmerman:
“Too close to a ni–a as a mother–king bomb/ Trayvon Martin, I’m never missing my target/ Bitch ni–as hating, tell me it’s what I’m parking”
Many viewed the lyric as disrespectful, but after the controversy erupted Rick Ross released an official statement to VIBE saying that the reference was not meant to be in jest.
“It’s so important that today, on the two-year anniversary of the death of Trayvon Martin, we never forget that tragedy,” Ross said. “I’m never going to let the world forget that name. In my song ‘Black and White’ off Mastermind I say, ‘Trayvon Martin, I’m never missing my target’. There I’m reminding people that if you’re a black person or a person of any color for that matter in this country, you have to be accurate, whatever moves you make, stay accurate. Even when you’re walking down the street, playing music from your car, you have to stay on point.”
Ross added that there are black men being killed “and their killers [are] beating the trial.” He added that the level of violence against black men is at its highest level since the 1960s, and that he felt a special connection to Trayvon Martin, though the two never met.
“I am Trayvon Martin, we’re all Trayvon Martin. He was from South Florida. That could have been me or one of my homies. So, stay alert and never miss your target. Whatever that target may be. Getting out the hood, providing from your family. Stay sharp. Stay alive. Trayvon, Rest in Peace.”
This is the second time the MMG Bawse has had to apologize for his lyrics. Last year, the “War Ready” MC had to dodge accusations that he advocated rape with the line, “Put Molly all in her champagne/She ain’t even know it/I took her home and I enjoyed that/She ain’t even know it,” from his guest spot on Rocko’s “U.O.E.N.O.”
In the wake of all the public outcries, Ross lost his lucrative endorsement deal with Reebok and has since used the misstep as “a learning situation.”
Mastermind is slated for release on March 4.