“Bitch, I’m a cow, Bitch, I’m a cow” are the lyrics that made Doja Cat famous back in 2018. Even back then, certain audiences were demanding for the rapper to be cancelled as the result of inappropriate tweets the star published on her profile over the years. The controversial artist recently scored her first number one single with the incredibly catchy Say So, produced by the infamous Dr. Luke. Thanks to that, the internet sensation managed to become a mainstream superstar in no time, releasing collaborations with megastars such as Nicki Minaj or The Weeknd, at the same time securing her status as one of the 2020s first artists-phenomenons.
I’m not an expert when it comes to Doja’s career or life story. In fact, my knowledge in this field isn’t big enough to write an informative post about her artistic ventures or judge her progress as an artist. Of course, as a person interested in the music industry I feel the responsibility to be up to date with the trends and viral songs. I listened to Hot Pink and I agree it is a good album. However, the recent scandals surrounding Lana Del Rey and her lengthy letter posted on social media encouraged me to deeply explore the double standards mentioned by Del Rey in her statement.
Literally hours after the Lana post started making headlines all over the world, including the main page of BBC News, Doja Cat made headlines herself for… allegedly being racist during some dodgy videochats with incels. Emm… okay?
The Say So rapper, who by this point has been cancelled more times than all of my Ryanair flights to Poland that I’ve booked over the years, got in trouble when the videos of her hanging out with potty mouthed incels on group videochats leaked on Twitter. On the videos, which are also available on YouTube, we can see Doja stretching on her bed, as well as “sexually posing” as her male pals swear in the background.
I do have a problem with Doja Cat, however, the incel controversy isn’t the reason why. First of all, on the screen-recorded videos published online, the participating men can’t be caught saying anything racist. Do they seem dodgy? Yes. Do they swear a lot? Yes. Would I like to participate in online chats with them myself? No. In all fairness, it doesn’t change the fact that no racist statements have been made. It’s like saying “oh, this guy looks like he’s racist” or “he looks like he hates women.”
The fact Doja Cat participated in chats of this nature is alarming, but it’s also another example of cancel culture getting out of control. The rapper explained the situation saying that video-chats like that are something she has been doing since her childhood years to socialise. I mean, whatever floats your boat. We can’t assume the men she’s been in touch with on the chats said racist things only because it seems like they would.
I do have a problem with Doja Cat and it has nothing to do with incel webchats. In 2018, following backlash, she tweeted: “I’ve said fa***t roughly like 15 000 times in my life. Does saying fa***t mean you hate gay people? I don’t think I hate gay people. Gay is ok.”
Let’s imagine the situation. A white person tweets they have used the N word, like, 15 000 times in their life. Then, they ask whether using it means you hate people of colour? Black is ok!
Since then, the rapper apologised for the situation, however, it left the bad aftertaste in a lot of people’s mouths. The fact the half of Twitter had to be offended for her to even acknowledge saying this often bleeped, highly pejorative word is not okay, is in itself off-putting. It puts her in the same category with Azealia Banks, who said she likes the latino and black gays more than the whites ones, because the white ones are sassy and bitchy, and she can call them fa*s because they call her a bitch.
In 2020, another singer who gained her fame and prestige by singing elegant ballads about being in love is called racist for comparing the reactions she got to the ones received by the likes of Kehlani, Doja Cat and Ariana Grande. The fact she dares to clarify she doesn’t glamorise abuse by singing about her personal experiences, the fact she dares to ask “why only me?” while comparing the subject matter of her songs to her contemporaries’ resulted in thousands of hateful comments. I do agree that Lana went a little bit too far by name-dropping so many women who, in fact, had it worse than her, but still.
At the same time, the rapper who had her biggest hits produced by the guy who has been accused for mentally and physically abusing the singer Kesha multiple times over the years is enjoying her high profile collabs. She called people fa***ts, like, 15 000 times and gets a tap on the shoulder every time she says sorry.
“They judge me like a picture book, by the colors, like they forgot to read” Lana Del Rey, Brooklyn Baby, 2014