You know you’ve hit bottom when you’re ensnared in a homophobic PR nightmare and you’re being offered advice from 50 Cent.
In an interview with E!’s Nightly Pop, 50 Cent called embattled rapper DaBaby “a really talented, special artist” who is still figuring out how to be in the public eye after igniting a firestorm last month by making offensive comments about gay people and HIV/AIDS, followed by a non-apology, and then another apology that he later took back.
“He just transitioned from being in that pool that everyone’s in as a rap artist,” the 44-year-old, who endorsed Donald Trump in 2020, said. “They didn’t notify him that he’s turning into a superstar.”
But this doesn’t quite square with what DaBaby said on his own Twitter page, where he recently announced he has accepted God’s challenge to be an “icon”.
I was tryna be a rapper for like one more year God ready for me to be a ICON now. This what I asked for I proudly accept the challenge ????? lets get it.
— DaBaby (@DaBabyDaBaby) July 30, 2021
“He’s just two years into his career, there’s no artist development, no A&R, and he’s definitely had no media training,” 50 Cent continued.
“There’s nobody that tells you, ‘now you’re being held to these standards that are mainstream standards that you can’t say things, you can’t do these different things’.”
As for DaBaby’s since-deleted apology to the LGBTQ community, 50 Cent said that was just sloppy PR.
“He didn’t have a publicist involved,” he said. “That’s why the response took so long. Even his apologies. … The first apology attempt at it is what made it worse.”
Asked whether he thinks DaBaby will be able to weather this storm, 50 Cent said he believes he will.
“Yeah, he will. As long as he keeps his consistency with the music. Remember they canceled Chris Brown, five, six times?”
We’re not sure it’s helpful to compare DaBaby to a guy who is best known for beating his girlfriend so badly that she needed to be hospitalized, but we digress.
Of course, 50 Cent is no stranger to homophobic scandals himself. He’s been using his platform to spew anti-LGTBQ vitriol for nearly 20 years.
In 2004, he told Playboy that he wasn’t “into f*ggots” and doesn’t like gay people around him “because I’m not comfortable with what their thoughts are.”
In 2010, he said any man who doesn’t sleep with women should “just kill” themselves and make the world a “better place.” That same year he also made a joke about sending a gunman to “shoot up a gay wedding.”
If you a man and your over 25 and you don't eat pu**y just kill your self damn it. The world will be a better place. Lol
— 50cent (@50cent) September 30, 2010
In 2014, he alleged Diddy, Rick Ross, and ex-record exec Steve Stout were all gay in a same-sex relationship together. And in 2015, he complained that Empire, Lee Daniels’ acclaimed LGBTQ-inclusive series about a hip-hip music company, had too much “extra gay stuff.”
Then there are his many, many, many social media posts from over the years mocking LGBTQ people, particularly trans people, including Dwyane Wade’s 12-year-old daughter, Zaya, who come out just last year.
Despite never apologizing for any of this, 50 Cent recently said it “stings” when people label him a homophobe.
Watch 50 Cent talk about the DaBaby scandal below. Or don’t.
Graham Gremore is the Features Editor and a Staff Writer at Queerty. Follow him on Twitter @grahamgremore.