Been hearing some chatter on the Internet the past few days about this Soulja Boy controversy with actual soldiers. Quick recap: rapper Soulja Boy’s new song, Let’s Be Real, leaked on the Internet. The song contains the lyric “fuck all the army troops.” Naturally, the outrage followed.
In the wake of the outrage, Soulja Boy issued apologies, pulled the song from his new album and vowed to make amends, first and foremost with the troops.
End of story. Right?
People are still pissed and want…well, I don’t know what they want now. Soulja Boy apologized, pulled the song and vowed to make amends. But, apparently, that’s not good enough. I’m not sure what they want anymore, but I can’t help but see parallels to situations when otherwise good people slip and drop a racial slur and immediately recant and apologize. I’m not talking about Mel Gibson’s drunken tirades. I’m not even talking about Axl Rose’s artistic license (although a good comparison/contrast).
I’m talking about Michael Richards, who went completely off the reservation on a heckler and cracked back with seven n-bombs (see? I won’t even write the word, for fear of getting tagged a racist). Far be it from me to defend Richards’ actions because I won’t. But he apologized immediately after the incident, then pretty much went into hiding until his cathartic turn on Curb Your Enthusiasm last season. My point: should Richards be allowed to move on from his transgression? Yes.
And so should Soulja Boy. I’d never defend what he said (partially because I haven’t even heard the song), but I’m a firm believer in second chances. To this point, he’s done all you could ask him to do. So I ask those who are still angry and aren’t satisfied: What more do you want from him?
We can’t go back in time and undo Soulja Boy’s lyric anymore than we can undo Michael Richards’ ugly rant. So if you choose to remain unsatisfied and unmoved by Soulja Boy’s apology, it’s your burden to carry, not his. Forgiveness is a two-way street. He’s stepped up and owned his mistake. Now it’s time for you to own your anger and let it go.