Macklemore's 'Racist' Costume Sparks Major Backlash

MacklemoreOn Friday night, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis performed a secret show in Seattle to honor a new exhibit at the city's EMP Museum. The thing about this that actually makes it news is how Macklemore was dressed: in a fake beard, wig, and nose. Okay, even that wouldn't be particularly noteworthy except for the particulars of his choice of costume. Among many other negative reactions, Gawker described it as "a deeply racist caricature," "the stereotype of a greedy, hook-nosed Jewish man," and "like literal Nazi propaganda."

Social media virtually exploded with accusations of anti-Semitism for the Grammy Award winner, and after remaining quiet all weekend, Macklemore has posted an official response to the controversy.

Well, "official" in that he's tweeted about it. But let's back up to a few of the reactions to his costume:

My personal feeling about the whole controversy is that I doubt Macklemore purposefully chose the outfit to evoke Jewish stereotypes. I mean, if for no other reason that being called out as a racist really sort of goes against his whole 'Same Love' branding, you know? But I do think he should have looked in the mirror at some point and thought, Oooh, you know, maybe not such a great idea. And I definitely feel like he could have posted a better response than this:


Yeah, I get the need to state that he didn't have bad intentions, but the higher road would have been an apology rather than a knee-jerk defense. Considering how many Jewish people were offended, this was a chance for him to say something more than 'Hey, it's not MY fault you thought it was racist.'

Also, in the follow-up articles that are slamming Macklemore, plenty of folks seem to be dredging up this old tweet as "proof" he's a bad person:


Except that post was a reference to a 2005 hip-hop track. So we probably shouldn't take out-of-context tweets as evidence that Macklemore's a deranged truther that hates Jews ... at least not yet.

What's your take, do you think Macklemore's costume was offensive? Do you think he meant it to be?


Image via Twitter

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nonmember avatar Kristi

One love my ass!

nonmember avatar Lena

Are you dense or willingly stupid? Saying he didn't intentionally dress up in anti-Semitic gear would be like saying someone who wore black-face didn't do it to offend. But I guess you're willing to let anti-Semitism slide if the guy writes a pro-gay song? Where is the love in that?

nonmember avatar T682

Very insensitive to say the least!

nonmember avatar sooboo

As a Ringo fan, I'm deeply offended.

Adam Smith

It's like he was posing for a Nazi publication, I don't remember seeing a more offensive stereotype of a Jew in my life.

As random as wearing blackface with big fake rubber lips, while eating a watermelon and drinking grape soda.

Morge... Morgendorffer

Seriously? people need to stop being offended by everything they see and start having a laught at themselves. Sometimes we take ourselves too seriously.

Hortense Fliggenzeil

Seriously, Morgendorffer!? Your post does *not* count! This is not about "being offended by everything [we] see." It is about *this* blatantly racist display by Macklemore, him being disingenuous about it, and people like you excusing it by lumping it in with all other events.

Morge... Morgendorffer

I think its silly to let something like this upset you. So what he wore a wig and a big nose. There are worse things.

nonmember avatar Bella

Come on people grow up and get a life. Offended please he wore a costume. People are way to sanative now a day’s black, white, all nationals, and religion. Get off your high horse if someone wants to wear a costume to fit in the crowed or to stand out then so be it. If he wants to dress like a Jesus, an animal, clown or whatever then he can. He lives in America he can dress in whatever he wants as long he is covered. If he put on yellow, red or brown paint on his face than you would be complain about something else because he is white and in the spotlight. You people take everything way to serious do you have a life, it’s a costume it has nothing about being Jewish.

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