Is DaBaby on the road to redemption?
It may well be the case.
For, the rapper met with nine HIV-awareness groups to apologize for the insensitive remarks he made about those living with HIV at Rolling Loud Miami; the same event that also saw him utter homophobic comments.
His problematic attempts at apologizing only served to exacerbate the matter.
Now, however, it looks like he’s attempting – in a more committed manner – to do the right thing.
Full story below…
A statement from LGBTQIA organization GLAAD read:
Today, Black leaders from nine HIV organizations across the U.S. announced they held a virtual, private meeting with artist Jonathan “DaBaby” Kirk to discuss HIV facts and share personal stories of living and thriving with HIV. The leaders called for a meeting with the artist in an open letter on August 04 to which DaBaby affirmatively responded. The organizations provide HIV education and direct services to people most impacted by HIV/AIDS, especially Black heterosexual men and women and LGBTQ communities across the southern United States, which account for the majority of new HIV cases.
The organizations involved include:
Black AIDS Institute, Gilead Sciences COMPASS Initiative Coordinating Centers, GLAAD, National Minority AIDS Council (NMAC), The Normal Anomaly Initiative, Positive Women’s Network-USA, Prevention Access Campaign (U=U), the Southern AIDS Coalition, and Transinclusive Group, as well as faith and HIV advisors.
A joint statement from them all added:
The open letter to DaBaby was our way to extend him the same grace each of us would hope for. Our goal was to ‘call him in instead of calling him out.’ We believed that if he connected with Black leaders living with HIV that a space for community building and healing could be created. We are encouraged he swiftly answered our call and joined us in a meaningful dialogue and a thoughtful, educational meeting.
During our meeting, DaBaby was genuinely engaged, apologized for the inaccurate and hurtful comments he made about people living with HIV, and received our personal stories and the truth about HIV and its impact on Black and LGBTQ communities with deep respect. We appreciate that he openly and eagerly participated in this forum of Black people living with HIV, which provided him an opportunity to learn and to receive accurate information.
As community leaders who understand the power of conversations as a path to education and evolution, we know that DaBaby received meaningful facts. We were also able to share personal stories about our lives as everyday people who acquired HIV. Now, we wish for him to use his platform to relay that critical information to his fanbase and encourage people to get tested and know their status. During our meeting, DaBaby acknowledged that the HIV facts we presented- many of which he himself was unaware of- are what every American needs to know: HIV is preventable and when treated properly, cannot be passed on. At a time when HIV continues to disproportionately impact Black communities, celebrities and influencers of all backgrounds have the power to defeat the stigma that fuels the epidemic. We must all do our part to make the public aware of medication that can prevent HIV and to get more people tested and treated. Together we can end this epidemic. 40 years is far too long. Stigma hurts; prevention, testing, and treatment work.
In light of this, do you see DaBaby bouncing back into public favor?