BET Columnist Cord Jefferson Can't Hold Me Back
Uncle Luke, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. Today, Luke responds to a BET columnist's criticisms.
Two days ago, Cord Jefferson, a young columnist for BET Networks looking to build a name for himself, wrote a response to my column, "African Americans Need To Use Condoms," claiming I'm wasting time giving out condoms and educating black people about practicing safe sex.
"The fact of the matter is that African-American young people don't necessarily need Uncle Luke to tell them they need to wear condoms, because many of them are already doing so," Jefferson wrote.
I'm not surprised. Jefferson is just continuing BET's established tradition of showing me no love. The network has never recognized my work. The only reason I appeared onstage at the 2012 BET Awards is because rapper French Montana, who sampled my song "I Wanna Rock" on his hit single "PopThat," insisted I be there. Now BET is attacking my community activism via this uniformed young man.
Jefferson cites a 2011 survey by the Center for Disease Control that says 65 percent of black teenagers in America use condoms while only 58 percent of Latino teens and 60 percent of white teens used protection aids during sexual intercourse. Jefferson doesn't tell his readers that the same CDC study concluded that Black teenagers are using condoms less frequently than they were 10 years ago. Condom use for black teenagers increased by 22 percent between 1991 and 1999, then fell back by 4.7 percent from 1999 to 2011.
Jefferson is also a hypocrite because BET has been doing Rap It Up, the network's own safe sex campaign, since 1998 in conjuction with the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, the non-profit organization that in April released new figures that African Americans account for more than half the HIV/AIDS cases out there. According to its website, Rap It Up is "a comprehensive and sustained media campaign to inform African-Americans about HIV/AIDS."
Why isn't Jefferson telling his BET bosses to stop telling young black people to use condoms?
I'm not denying some people contract sexually transmitted diseases through intravenous drug use, but the greater risk is unprotected sex. Research by the CDC shows that a large proportion of young people are not concerned about becoming infected with HIV and are not taking precautions to protect their health.
I find it disturbing that Jefferson would rather bring me down than help my efforts to educate African-Americans about one of the many societal ills we face. Then again, I'm the rapper BET has hated for more than 30 years. Instead of focusing their energy on supporting the African-American community, Jefferson and BET want to waste time arguing against me.
However, no one can question my community activism, especially a young buck writer trying to get page views.
Follow Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.