On his single "Miserable America," Kevin Abstract fearlessly tackled his sexuality. "My boyfriend saved me, my mother's homophobic / I'm stuck in the closet, I'm so claustrophobic," sang Abstract, frustrated over the reality of being a young, gay, black man in America.
Over the past two years, several members of our writing team have tackled homophobia in hip-hop. Sure, progress has been made over the past 25 years, but we still have a long way to go. Whenever we cover Young Thug's unique approach to fashion or art, the reader comments that follow are usually a cesspool of ignorance and hatred.
While rap was built on a foundation of hyper-masculinity, there's a new generation of artists—jackhammers in hand—who want to break through the concrete and inspire change. One of these artists is Taylor Bennett, who is so much more than just Chance's little brother.
Before turning 21 on Thursday (January 19), Bennett took to Twitter to open up about his sexuality, he says, to help others who are currently struggling with coming out as gay or bisexual to their family and friends.
Bennett, like his big brother, understands the real impact he can make for his community—a community that, by and large, is intolerant of any lifestyle that isn't heterosexual.
In much the same way Chance has inspired Chicago's youth to get involved in local affairs and build community, Taylor's brave admission will hopefully encourage other young men and women to not feel ashamed to simply be themselves.
On January 25, Bennett will release the video for the title track off his appropriately-titled new album Broad Shoulders. A sneak preview can be seen in a video trailer below.
Applaud this man.