Source owner David Mays has decided to step down from the Hip-Hop Summit Action Networks board of directors, alleging that Russell Simmons was irresponsible for his recent defense of Eminem. Last week, the magazine released a 10-year-old tape of a younger Marshall Mathers rapping disrespectfully about Black women and using the word ni**er.
"Russell Simmons' rush to defend Eminem over his racist lyrics is disturbing and
disappointing to me," David Mays said in a statement. "This is not the Russell I've known and admired for many years as a strong leader of the hip-hop movement."
Simmons' non-profit Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) released a statement last week supporting Eminem and accepting his subsequent apology for his remarks.
"These lyrics are disgusting, but the oneness of hip-hop culture has transformed many young people in trailer parks around the country away from their parents¹ old mindset of white supremacy," Russell Simmons said in a statement. "We believe Eminem's apology is sincere and forthright. He continues not only to be an icon of hip-hop, but also has evolved into a good soldier who gives back money, time and energy to the community, encouraging this generation of youth to reach their highest aspirations."
Mays said that he would not rejoin HSAN's board until Simmons revealed what financial ties HSAN may have to Eminem and Interscope Records.
Co-owner Benzino reiterated his previous sentiments not content with Eminems previous apology issued last week.
"First and foremost Eminem owes a true apology as well as a more detailed explanation to the Black community and to Black women for these offensive lyrics. Perhaps Eminem can be a more powerful force in uniting poor people from the trailer parks to the projects. But we must use this situation to explore that idea more closely," Benzino said.
Simmons responded to the allegations and accepted Mays' resignation."In almost 30 years in this business, I've never been in a hip-hop
battle and I will not be drawn into one now by The Source magazine," Simmons said. "Dave
and Benzino are my brothers and I wish the best for them. Unfortunately,
do not agree on this issue. In a Hip-Hop Summit in Detroit earlier this
year, Eminem, Nas and Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick inspired 14,000
people to reach for their highest aspirations. At that time, Eminem
received an award from the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network for his
donation of coats to those who were cold on the streets of Detroit.
The Source magazine takes the opposite position, I stand by what I said
that I believe Eminem's apology is sincere."