At a pre-inauguration concert in D.C. yesterday, Lupe Fiasco took to the StartUp RockOn stage and threw quite the fiasco (sorry, had to).
The rapper, who was well into a track called, "Words I Never Said," entered some tense Zero Dark Thirty territory when he exercised his first amendment right to free speech, getting knee-deep in this political rhyme: “And these the same people supposedly telling us the truth / Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist, Gaza Strip was getting bombed, Obama didn’t say shit / That’s why I ain’t vote for him, next one either / I’m part of the problem, my problem is I’m peaceful.”
Lupe was then immediately escorted off the stage following the verse. The event has already released the following statement on what happened yesterday...
"Lupe Fiasco performed at this private event, and as you may have read, he left the stage earlier than we had planned. But Lupe Fiasco was not “kicked off stage” for an “anti-Obama rant.” We are staunch supporters of free speech, and free political speech. This was not about his opinions. Instead, after a bizarrely repetitive, jarring performance that left the crowd vocally dissatisfied, organizers decided to move on to the next act."
The well-prepared organizers who couldn't be bothered to Wikipedia the artists they invited had clearly missed the part on Lupe's page plainly chronicling his political views under the sub-header "Political Views." Lupe has an affinity for all texts by Howard Zinn and probably Edward Said. He made it a vocal and principled point not to vote in the past two presidential elections.
In June 2011, Lupe was quoted as saying "…the biggest terrorist is Obama and the United States of America…" on a CBS news program in reference to the rapper's own strict anti-military/occupation policy on international affairs. More power to him, but needless to say, Lupe is something of a loose political cannon, which is obviously great for the inauguration-themed event that's ALL ABOUT PRESIDENT OBAMA you are planning. Maybe if I ever get married, I'll hire these people to plan my wedding, but only if I want them to invite every ex I've ever had in my life.
Knowing all this easy-to-access information then, the question isn't really, "Why would Lupe say that?" The appropriate question would be, rather, "Why the hell would they invite Lupe on stage to go ahead and then say that?"
Hopefully they've learned their lesson and four years from now invite less-outspoken bands like Rage Against The Machine if they're free.