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ableism eminem homophobia marshallmathers racism sexism May 04, 2022

Dear Eminem.  Marshall Mathers, Slim Shady, Mr. we are about the same age, from about the same place and the same kinds of people, 

I am writing to you because I am convinced that you are in a unique position to significantly advance the fight against racism and sexism. 

I have been listening to you since WJLB wouldn’t play you on the radio.  Yeah, I remember those conversations on the street.  I feel old for sure now.  

Your music was cathartic to me while working through the impacts of child abuse and neglect I experienced while growing up in Michigan. 

My 20-year old daughter and I were on a 19-hour road trip last year and you are one of the few artists that we both enjoy, so most of your material got played on this road trip.  When she was younger there were songs I always skipped or paused to provide my parental opinion, but this time, I handled it a bit differently.

You see, I have been studying systemic racism and took a course on unlearning interpersonal racism.  I started consulting for organizations, partnering with individuals to unlearn racism and change the systems in place, and to change racist outcomes. As you can imagine, in this work there is a lot of overlap with sexism, homophobia, ageism and classism. 

The humor and irony of what I am about to say next does not escape me at all. Life handed you the role of an undesirable. And you managed to leverage that into success. AND, you also fully acknowledge your privilege and consistently speaking truth to power. (White America is only one example of this)

The other thing I recognize in this content is your growth, which is the thing that inspired me to write to you, hoping that you, like me, are willing to do the work, demonstrating the path to change for those in our circles.

Why you? 

  • Racism is a white people problem to solve.   Sexism is a male problem to solve.  You are a white male whose audience shares your identity. 
    • This audience is also in strategic places. And we are the right age to BE the power we are speaking to 
  • To demonstrate the path to change to your fan base and our children
  • To create antiracists

How could you do this?

Take the UNLEARN Course.  Unlearn the systemic racism that resides in every single one of us.  You will see the intersection between racism and sexism, and quite a few other things.  If not that, some other path, for example, we at SAIR are offering certain artists free DEIB training as they demonstrate their allyship, partnership and desire to elevate those with less privilege. 

Write your next album. 

You have the fan base that, if engaged, can drive the change we all need to see and be. 

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