Earlier this week, Ebro compared Eminem's challenges as a white rapper to black people's societal challenges.
Eminem treats Rap how Black folks have had to treat life... be 5x better, work 5x harder than everyone and still not necessarily get respect.— Kojo Ebro (@oldmanebro) January 23, 2020
A lot of folks didn't like the comp. But Ebro is not backing down from it. He explained himself on his radio show this morning.
"We're not talking about popularity," Ebro said, acknowledging Em is very popular and his being white may have made him more so. "We're talking about respect. Don't confuse success with respect. There are people who will fix their lips to say that Eminem is a wack rapper. You might not like what he talks about. You might not like his voice. You may not like his music. Which I would debate is probably because he's white and it's racial anyway, but let's assume that it's not. It's not for you His skill set as a rapper ... If he is privileged—and he is—the fact that he cares this much about being great in Hip Hop and being respected? Yo, the entire album that he just put out: shouting out the greats, paying homage, flexing his rap skills."
"Here's the poin: Eminem operates in a space that's dominated by black folks. He's had to pay his, be made fun of, be second-guessed. That's just how it works. Black folks have had to do that every single day. And he's also had to prove himself over and over and over again. You know what black folks still have to do right now in America? We still have to prove ourselves all the time."
Rosenberg added something to Ebro's argument that Ebro agreed with.
"I can relate to this, on some level: The difference is when you're a white person in hip-hop, you're opting in. Black people have to do that every day to live life in America. No option," Rosenberg said. "I could complain to you about the breaks I don't think I get and the benefits of the doubt I don't get. But guess, what? I'm opting to chose with my privilege to be involved in Hip Hop, so I can't sit here and cry when people go, 'Shut up, Rosenberg, you don't know what you're talking about.' So the same with Eminem, but he's not crying that way."