(AllHipHop Interviews) Six years ago a rapper, drug dealer, and pimp named Mark Felder hit rock bottom when he found himself sleeping in his car. It was at that point that Felder says God broke him down and then eventually put the pieces of his life back together. The result of that experience was a man who was willingly to turn his life completely over to the Lord, and the faith-based emcee named Bizzle was born again.
Bizzle has released numerous projects since 2008. His 2013 album The Good Fight included production by Boi-1da and a guest feature from No Malice, but it was his recent response to Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ pro-gay rights song “Same Love” that started a firestorm.
People on both sides of the gay marriage debate strongly voiced their opinion about the God Over Money founder’s single with some championing his right to freedom of speech and others calling the song homophobic, hateful, and disturbing.
Bizzle connected with AllHipHop.com to speak about his controversial “Same Love (A Response)” and the reactions it has received. He also addresses religious imagery in Hip Hop, what he views as rappers being used to promote the gay agenda, and whether homosexuality is a condition that can be cured.
Macklemore and Ryan Lewis released their version of “Same Love” in 2012. Why did you decide to release your response last month?
I know the song is old. I thought it would fall off and disappear once they put out new material, but I saw the media keep trying to breathe life into the record and turning into a “gay anthem.” I think [Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’] Grammy Awards [performance] was the last straw.
I feel like we have conversations behind closed doors, but everybody’s afraid to speak, because nobody wants to be labeled a bigot, homophobic, or full of hate. I got tired of walking on egg shells. There has to be an opposing side. The media can’t make people afraid to disagree.
What’s your response to those people who say your “Same Love” response track is homophobic?
I’d ask how? As far as I see, disagreement automatically means homophobic. I don’t believe that. You would have to really show me what I said that leads you to believe that I’m scared of you which is what a homophobe is.
You made a reference in the song about rappers that promote the “gay agenda.” Which rappers do you feel are doing that?
The biggest one who co-signed gay marriage was Jay Z. I would say he’s at the top of Hip Hop, and if you wanted to push something to Black people that would be who you’d take anything through. Just because he’s powerful. Also, anybody you’ve seen in a skirt – A$AP Rocky. Anybody who they’ve put on a platform and made them say, “this is just like what we went through.”
That was another point you made in the song, the idea that the gay struggle should not be compared to the Black struggle. Do you dismiss the entire idea of equal rights for the LGBT community?
No, not at all. They should get the rights that married people get as far as tax breaks, but if your right to marry violates the pastor’s right to not marry you because of his religion, then I can’t be for this right against that right.
Also, I know that gay people suffered. A lot of people seem to think that I’m just disregarding any of gay people’s struggle, and that’s not what I’m doing. What I’m saying is don’t compare them. I don’t compare slavery to the Holocaust. Don’t compare this to that, because the moment you start comparing similarities, then you make it okay for me to compare the differences. I do believe there are differences.
Which would be what in your opinion?
I don’t believe people are born gay, though I do believe we all are born with temptations. But, a child born Black in that time period, from day one had the world against them. If a child is born gay, we won’t even know until about six or seven. At this point now, the punishment is far worse if you commit a hate crime. Back then not only was it not a hate crime, you could murder us for fun. It was in the law that we were only three-fifths of a person. I think that the level of oppression was a lot different.
You said that you don’t believe people are born gay. Do you think it’s a condition that can be fixed? Do you think someone can stop being gay?
I know a few people who’ve been delivered from homosexuality. The thing is, if I tell a homosexual that they say, “they’ve just been brainwashed or tricked into believing that it’s not normal.” I know a good three or four people who’ve been fully delivered, and it was by God so if you’re not a Christian you probably won’t believe it.
There was another part of your song that got a lot of reaction. That’s when you made the comparison between homosexuals and pedophiles. Do you believe that a gay sexual act between consenting adults is the same as a pedophile having sex with children?
What I’m saying is, before the pedophile ever touches a child his desires are already disgusting to the homosexual. They hit me like, “I’m disgusted you would compare me to that.” I have yet to meet anyone who could give me a reason that the pedophile cannot use. Whether it’s “born this way.” Whether it’s “I didn’t choose this.”
If you’re not a Christian, a lot people say the Bible’s outdated. They throw our laws away. Well, if that’s the case the pedophile can say, “your laws are outdated, and girls are having sex at twelve these days, so let’s throw your laws away.” I’ve yet to hear anybody use an excuse that the pedophile can’t also use. I’m talking before he’s even touches a child he’s still disgusting to you, but if I say your desire is disgusting to me I’m wrong. My obligation is to not only love the gay person. It’s to also love the pedophile even if I don’t agree with what he does.
I think some would argue that the difference is that one is between two consenting adults and the other is an adult taking advantage of a child.
There are pedophiles who don’t act on their desires, but if he told you that he wants to, even if he doesn’t, you still look at him with disgust. At that point the argument for him touching a child is irrelevant, because he hasn’t done it. Even if he’s sought help, he’s still disgusting to you.
I’m talking at the desire level, not on the acting level. At the desire level I feel like they’re in the same boat. You say one is between two consenting adults, well, there are different countries that have different laws where 16 might be the consenting age. I’m not for the pedophile. What I’m saying is how do you get to throw out the Bible and say that law is outdated, but he has to stick to your law that says 14 is not old enough? That’s the argument he can make, based on the argument you’re making.
[ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE: Clipse’s No Malice Addresses Kanye’s ‘Yeezus’ Title & Depiction Of Jesus Christ In Hip-Hop]
You have Kanye West’s Yeezus. You have A$AP Mob about to drop their L.O.R.D. album. There have been a lot of religious references in Hip Hop recently like J. Cole’s Born Sinner and The Game’s Jesus Piece. What is your take on Hip Hop’s use of religious imagery?
I don’t rock with it when it’s used out of context. I definitely can’t support it. Sometimes people use it and have a righteous thought behind it, but when it’s used for mockery I don’t rock with it at all. If I decide, when I’m writing, to put in a rhyme about something that you feel mocked by, then they should honor that same freedom of speech that gave them the right to do that with the Lord’s name.
Would you ever consider collaborating with an openly gay artist?
It depends on what the topic is about. If he’s pushing a message that’s contrary to mine - that would be for anybody – I wouldn’t rock with any artist I feel stands for everything I’m against. But, if he wanted to talk about his struggle, I’d get on there and talk about mine. Of course I’ll pray on it like I do anything else.
Ultimately, what would you like to see happen as far as the gay community’s role in the media and entertainment?
I’d like to see an opposing view be honored and respected. I want to see the manipulation come to an end. I always say when a dude tells a female if you don’t have sex with me you don’t love me; that’s manipulation. Of course when a dude is telling a female that, he doesn’t feel that way, but if a dude was telling his daughter that he would definitely feel that way. I feel the same when the media pushes: if you don’t agree with me then you hate me, but if you love me then you have to agree with what I do. That’s manipulation as well, and I’m not with the manipulation.
Bizzle is currently working on the God Over Money compilation LP. 100% of the profits from the album’s sales will go to fund water well projects in Africa.
For more information about God Over Money visit their website godovermoney.com.
You can follow Bizzle on Twitter @MyNameIsBizzle.