"While it's commendable that he has vowed to respect the legacy of Emmett Till and his memory to 'not use or reference Emmett Till or the Till family in his music,' this statement falls short of an apology, as none is mentioned," Airickca Gordon-Taylor, who is also executive director of the Mamie Till Mobley Memorial Foundation, said.
Wayne sparked controversy back in February over the lyrics, "Beat that pussy up like Emmett Till," referencing the fatal beating and lynching the 14-year-old Chicago native suffered for supposedly whistling at a white woman while visiting Mississippi in 1955. In a letter published yesterday, Wayne said he supported Epic Record's decision to remove the offending lyric from the song and promised not to perform them.
"I have tremendous respect for those who paved the way for the liberty and opportunities that African-Americans currently enjoy," he wrote. "As a business owner who employs several African-American employees and gives philanthropically to organizations that help youth to pursue their dreams my ultimate intention is to uplift rather than degrade our community."
In related Lil Wayne news, there were unconfirmed reports that the rapper was back in the hospital after suffering another seizure, though he was ultimately treated and then discharged: "I'm fine," he tweeted yesterday afternoon. Back in March, Wayne was hospitalized after suffering three seizures in a row, reportedly caused by epilepsy.