T.I.: Celebs Should Be Allowed to Speak Out Against Gays Without Being ‘Shut Down’


In the new issue of Vibe, T.I. sounds off on the Tracy Morgan controversy, and suggests that it's un-American for gay people to speak out against those who criticize them:

Man, I will say this, the funniest joke I ever heard Tracy (Morgan) say during a stand-up was, ‘C’mon man, I think gay people are too sensitive. If you can take a dick, you can take a joke.’ [Cracks up laughing.] That shit was funny to me. And it’s kind of true.’

While T.I. makes clear that he supports anyone’s sexual preference, he then connects, in his opinion, a current oversensitivity among gay people with a consequential and ironic offense of the First Amendment. “They’re like,‘If you have an opinion against us, we’re gonna shut you down.’ … That’s not American. If you’re gay you should have the right to be gay in peace, and if you’re against it you should have the right to be against it in peace.’


  1. Paul says

    Oh T.I… and I’m sure you think the world is just a peachy place when people hatefully drop the “N” word left and right. Free country and all that jazz, right?

  2. Mike says

    I wish people would allow me to openly speak about getting blacks back into the fields and Jews back onto the trains. Gee, it’s a free country and all. It’s simply not American to keep my hate speech in check.

  3. Dr. Verdon Coleman says

    You know the ironic thing about this? I know several gay black men and women who leapt to this assclown’s defense (including me) when he was arrested for a parole violation. I was one of the first people to say that maybe he should be given another chance. Won’t make that mistake again.

  4. Robert In WeHo says

    Isn’t it amazing that people like T.I. want their free speech rights unabridged but don’t want to suffer the consequences for what they’ve said…

  5. Tim NC says

    Once again we need to explain what “Freedom of Speech” actually is.

    Freedom of Speech means you are free to speak your mind without GOVERNMENT interference. No one from the government stopped Tracy Morgan from saying whatever he wanted to say. No one from the government is going to stop T.I. from saying whatever he wants to say. Freedom of Speech is alive and well.

    Freedom of Speech does not mean that you will be free from the judgement of others and any consequences of that judgement.

  6. sparks says

    I bet he’s grateful that people of color have the right to make boneheaded, ignorant statements without having crosses burned in their yards. Does he realize that such rights wouldn’t exist for him if most people believed they should be able to be “against blacks” in peace?

  7. jason says

    What a vile little man this TI is. And to think that Ellen De Generes has had him on her show and has supported his career. Shame on you, Ellen.

    The problem with TI’s position is that speech against gays isn’t just speech. It is speech designed to cause an effect. The effect is to curtail our rights, both legally and socially.

    In any case, free speech works both ways. You talk, we respond. That’s how the world goes.

  8. jason says

    It is NOT racist to point to the hypocrisy of some black people. Some black people – especially the young ones – never had the consciousness of their fathers and mothers, the people who had to fight for their civil righs. Many young blacks are thus ignorant of the dangers of prejudice.

    TI needs to be educated on the dangers of prejudice and bigotry.

  9. FinanceGuru says

    TI, like most ignorant losers, misapprehends the meaning and reach of the First Amendment, which reads, in pertinent part: “Congress shall make no law….” I.e., the Government may not unduly infringe on its citizens rights to speak.

    1A has no private equivalent and does not foreclose the ability of concerned citizens to lobby advertisers to pull ads from publications/TV shows or the like.

  10. sal says

    Coretta Scott King my dear hero what happened to these black children?“Homophobia is like racism and anti-Semitism
    and other forms of bigotry in that it seeks to
    dehumanize a large group of people, to deny
    their humanity, their dignity and personhood.”
    ― Coretta Scott King

  11. justinw says

    The hypocrisy. It burns. If someone started ranting against the “N-word-ers”, he would likely be the first one to react and call for action. It is not “shutting down” to call out hate. People are free to say pretty much anything they like. They are NOT free to avoid the consequences of their speech.

  12. jason says

    What is it with these black ignoramuses being thrust on us by the music industry? What on earth have we done to deserve this litany of anti-gay idiots (50 Cent, Usher, Beenie Man, Buju Banton) being given recording contracts and fame and success? Perhaps it’s time we ditched this extremely homophobic industry.

  13. Stephen Pickard says

    Why does anyone care what this man says? It makes no difference because he makes no difference. What does make a difference is for all of us to continually condemn the hatred in homophobic speech directed at our community that results in countless suicides and discrimination. Perhaps he can walk his talk in the heart of Mississippi or Alabama where” HE SHOULD KNOW HIS PLACE.” Then let him preach to all of us about freedom and what it is like to be BLACK in the SOUTH. Wonder if he is ready to move to the “back of the bus” again. That’s freedom Mr TI – just sayin.

  14. new-new says

    I hate the racism here. Every single time a black person does or says something homophobic the comments relate that character flaw to the person’s race. That’s a phenomenon that I never see in the comment section of similar articles with a white perpetrator. Just saying.

    The notion that black people shouldn’t be homophobic is a problematic one. People in positions of relative privilege (in this case being heterosexual) don’t see it. Just like many white gay people don’t see their relative position of privilege(being white). The idea that one group over another should be more enlightened to a social issue involving a segment of society is stupid. The idea makes membership to a group mutually exclusive by denying how these issues overlap.

    It’s all about intersectionality. Read a book, people. Get enlightened.

  15. Swine says

    We all need to care about what he says if he spreads gay hate speech — which is exactly what this is. He is famous & he has a national platform to keep spreading this hate. It’s even more ridiculous coming from someone black. Has he never felt the burn of hatred & racism? Ellen should be ashamed for allying herself w/this worthless lowlife.

  16. jason says

    It’s not racist to criticize a black person’s homophobia. Nor is it racist to criticize a white person’s homophobia. In TI’s case, we’re criticizing the prejudice and the hypocrisy, not the skin color.

    His skin color is relevant because it indicates a lack of understanding of the dangers of prejudice as applied to his own race.

  17. new-new says


    The problem in this assumption ones skin color would some how make them more sympathetic is that while it may sound logical to some, it Has no basis in reality. People are blind to their own privilege. Just like you and many others commenting here are blind to your racism.

    Also, please stop trying to homogenize black people and the black experience. That’s a sign of ignorance. We’re all different people with different experiences. Kthnx.

  18. J. Smith says

    Wow. T.I. really f@cked with those comments. I never knew he was a homophobic fool.

    Hey, New-New, as a 31-year-old black male that happens to be gay, I say f@ck T.I. and other homophobic black people. White gay people have a right to speak about the hypocrisy of black heterosexual folks.

    White gays are blinded by their white privilege, but f@ck T.I. right now. Some of the gays on this site are so upset that a black person in T.I.’s position could be so f@cking stupid and insane.

  19. MKe says

    Oh snap this is gonna be a big deal. Guess he needs a big sales bump. He’s gonna get it, because people are already comfortable enough in their homophobia. Can’t wait to see all the people who already jump down gay people’s throats in every gay issue, jump down our throats on this one.

  20. J. Smith says

    To all the white gay brothers and sisters that visit this site: racism and homophobia is all the same. In fact, homophobia might be worse than racism in my opinion.

    That’s why T.I. is blinded by his stupidity. As a heterosexual male, he does not seem to understand homophobia and the privilege of him being heterosexual in a world that oppresses gay people.

    No disrespect, T.I. is no different than some of you on this site because you are blinded by white skin privilege too.

    Again, racism and homophobia is the same. T.I. is blinded by his privilege of being a heterosexual man, and some of you are blinded by your privilege of being white.

    Remember, racism and homophobia are all the same ‘isms.’ That is exactly why an individual such as T.I. would make such disgusting comments.

    Now, hopefully you guys would tone down some of the racist comments because not all black people are the same.

  21. says

    One of my biggest pet peeves is people who use the First Amendment as a defense and don’t even know what the First Amendment says.

    The real problem is that the bullies know they are losing. Like all bullies, they are actually very weak. When we fight back they cry out that they are being oppressed (NOM and Maggie Gallagher are the biggest offenders.) That is complete. What are they are actually saying is that in the market of ideas they going out of business.

  22. Skooter McGoo says

    Is this supposed to be an important person? I guess to some, he would be worthy of listening to but I find his opinion of gay people irrelevant. He does seem to forget in the US Constitution he is still considered 3/5th of a person so he might want to refrain on trying to help discriminate against any group.

  23. Jexer says

    It’s okay to say “Being gay is not right for me.” … It’s okay to say “It’s wrong to be gay AND Catholic, or gay AND Mormon.”

    You’re free to choose. Churches are free to choose who they consider members.

    But when you say “I’m against homosexuality” you go too far, you’re telling other people to change just to please you.

    You won’t change who you are to please me.

    Don’t expect us to do what you won’t.

  24. DeeperStill says

    “Speaking Out Against Gays” is NOT the same as “being against it in peace”. Keeping your lowlife, homophobic opinions to yourself is “being against it in peace”.

    And being against something that is NATURAL, something you can’t change no matter how hard you try or want to, is beyond stupid. And utterly futile.

    Pathetic moron.

  25. Alex says

    Mr. TI, you mean black celebs, right? I mean, God forbid we address the inherent homophobia in the black community, because that would be RACIST. How dare we say that blacks are intolerant! How dare we try to make things better for EVERYONE! I mean, I know that if you deserve personal freedoms, they are just given to you! No one’s ever hadto fight for civil rights before. Thankfully, you understand that, so this little faggot will just shut up now.

  26. Steerpike says

    The problem is that you can’t live in peace when people are trying to take away your dignity, your civil rights and your children. You can’t live in peace when being bullied. You can’t live in peace when they’re trying to take away your children and put them into care. Yiou can’t live in peace when you can’t go to a hotel and be assured that you can take a room with your partner of fifteen years (or three months, or the night).

  27. new-new says

    @Jesse, please be breezy and have a seat somewhere.

    You clearly don’t understand institutional oppression. Oh, and the gross generalizations really aren’t helping your point.

  28. kelehe says

    Most, if not all, state constitutions clarify that you do not have the right to use your speech to offend/degrade others or cause harm to come to others. Freedom of speech has limits and comes with responsibility. Using speech to incite hate or to demean others is abuse of that freedom that can have legal consequences.

  29. uffda says

    I am immediately sick of looking at this guy’s face after reading his stumble-bum ideas. Just another of the bottom-feeding rappers who have no thoughts worth hearing. It’s certainly too bad he’s black as it makes any resistance look racist which it isn’t. Crap is crap that’s all.

  30. Caliban says

    Dumb@ss. Has everyone forgotten exactly WHAT is was that Tracy Morgan said that earned criticism?

    From the original complaint by the gay audience member, who payed his ticket money to be “entertained” by Tracy Morgan. (That he thought it was possible for TM to BE entertaining was his 1st mistake, IMO.)

    “Mr. Morgan took it upon himself to mention about how he feels all this gay s*it was crazy and that women are a gift from God and that “Born this Way” is bulls*it, gay is a choice, and the reason he knows this is exactly because “God don’t make no mistakes” (referring to God not making someone gay cause that would be a mistake).”

    Did I miss the announcement that TM has ANY credentials that qualify him to speak on this subject?

    Then: “He said if his son that was gay he better come home and talk to him like a man and not [he mimicked a gay, high pitched voice] or he would pull out a knife and stab that little N (one word I refuse to use) to death.”

    Yeah, that’s a real knee-slapper, especially right in the middle of the many highly publicized suicides of gay youth this year, not to mention the ongoing violence and murder of LGBT people. And there actually WAS a murder of a child by a man earlier this year because he “acted like a girl.” The child was 17 months old.

    HA HA HA HA! Right, Tracy? Isn’t that a SCREAM! Talent-free f*ckwit.

  31. says

    There’s a BIG difference between saying something that’s hurtful, and saying something that’s funny. He needs to learn that difference.

    We Gay people laugh at ourselves all the time. Were’s he been?

  32. Alex says

    All societies need an outgroup to be prejudiced against and consider themselves better than, even groups that were (and IMO still are in certain political circles) formerly considered tan outgroup in society. Blacks, Immigrants, gays, Jews, Italians, Irish; all were or or considered an outgroup in America. Blacks ceased being an outgroup when society forced government acknowledge them and give them equal rights. If T.I is too incompetent to see the literal analogy then I guess his time in jail was not spent productively.

  33. NE Rich says

    Note to my fellow Americans: the right of free speech is the constitutional protection that the UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT will not impede on Tracy Morgan’s et al’s FREE SPEECH. The US Government to my knowledge made no such move to impede on Mr Morgan’s stand up routine.
    The backlash came from private citizens. This man and others like him need to MAN UP and deal with the CONSIQUENCES of that constitutional protection and STOP WHINING when fellow Americans object to stupid things they say, as is there constitutionally protected right to free speech. It is not UN AMERICAN to object to something someone said. Get it, got it? Good.

  34. Michaelandfred says

    An obvious product of the American Educational system. Our population becomes dumber and more ignorant by the day. I think this is the right wings real hidden agenda. Make our country so stupid that the people can no longer think for themselves. Such an ignorant comment on so many levels it can only make one embarrassed for the speaker.

  35. kodiak says

    Perhaps he should be invited to debate his views with someone like Dan Savage or Michael Signorelli, instead of simply spouting his views. Then readers would be presented with a quick evisceration of his viewpoints.

  36. says

    “Hip-HOp” = Hate Speech. It’s against women, it’s against other black people and it’s against gay men — black as well as white.

    It is also GARBAGE!!!!!!!

    “Vibe” was created by Michael Jackson-enabler (and all-round puffed-up nothing) Quincey Jones.

  37. Rick says

    I’ll get crucified for saying this (and I really don’t care) but some of the posts’ on here about blacks in the music industry, about “N word ers”, about thugs and what not are no less ignorant that what Tracy Morgan said in his homophobic/ignorant rant towards gay people. T.I. commented on one line from the whole rant (which by the way I found funny and not offensive) and you idiots jump down his throat Tracy Morgan style. Not everyone is going to like us. Not everyone is going to say sweet, sugar coated things about us. We tear each other down constantly in our own community for God sakes!!! What part of this don’t you understand? Some of you find any excuse to throw in your own hatred against black people card at every chance you get. So in my eyes you’re no better than Tracy Morgan or T.I. you racist fools.

  38. Lymis says

    I’d potentially support the idea if he applied it to everyone – that humor is humor and that everyone could afford to lighten up and let humor break down the barriers of perceived differences among us.

    But when he says specifically that gay people need to lighten up, and leaves out everyone else – especially since he doesn’t bother to include his own minority group, that’s when it crosses the line.

    Why do I suspect he wouldn’t find it funny if white people said the same thing about jokes about black people?

  39. Bill Perdue says

    People who incite anti-GLBT violence with bigoted comments should be ‘shut down’ by being indicted as co-conspirators in cases of discrimination, violence, murder, murder by suicide and harassment.

  40. Francis says

    First things first, I’m not going to drag race into the discussion. There are non-homophobic black people, and homophobic whites. The real issue isn’t racial—–it’s cultural. And T.I. has been raised and immersed in a culture that is a breeding ground for homophobia. It just so happens that a large portion of that culture is made up of black individuals. T.I. is ignorant, he’s blind, and that’s because he doesn’t get it. A lot of straight people don’t. And as has been said previously, it’s because these people are speaking from a position of privilege.

    What’s really going on is that many straight people are more or less whining, because they’re being checked on their homophobic attitudes, unlike they have been in the past, so instead of taking responsibility for what they say, they blame us for calling them out on their actions and behavior. Not only do these people have absolutely no understanding of freedom of speech, but they think that this freedom of speech should only be entitled to them. When the shoe is on the other foot, they complain. It’s not “shutting someone down” to call them out for their homophobia. No-one can actually force an individual to think a certain way. And our community isn’t going out of our way to find every single homophobe in the world and harass them until they aren’t homophobic. No. But we will NOT allow people to COME AT US and denigrate our community without a response. The problem with people like T.I. is that he has no respect for the gay community. So therefore, he feels as if you can say and think whatever you please against us and that we’re in the wrong if we at all attempt to speak out or defend ourselves. That we should just sit down, shut up and accept being abused verbally, emotionally, and in other ways. That’s not going to happen and it doesn’t make us sensitive to stand up for our basic right to live our lives without harassment, discrimination and denigration.

    And, of course, he compares being gay to choosing to be homophobic. He probably thinks it’s a choice to be gay. How is saying what Tracy Morgan said being anti-gay in peace? What does that constitute? Does voting against the rights of LGBTQ citizens=anti-gay in peace? What isn’t American is condemning an entire group of legal citizens, denying them legal rights and social equality, solely for their orientation. That is NOT American. However, unfortunately, all too often it seems like stupidity is.

  41. JayKingOfGay says

    So, Free speech somehow, doesn’t include freely criticizing others? Doesn’t include spreading that message of criticism? Doesn’t include freely gathering with others who are also critical? Doesn’t include sharing criticism with someone about their speech? Doesn’t include the freedom to take your business, your contracts, your viewership, your ears elsewhere?

    TI doesn’t understand that Freedom of Speech is (a) a limitation on what the GOVERNMENT is allowed to do and (B) it’s a two way street.

  42. says

    There’s one thing you can always bet on when bigoted comments like this surface: Some percentage of the “Gay-people-should-lighten-up” contingent will crawl out of the woodwork and fall up in the Towleroad comments section. Aunt Thank-You-Ma-am strikes again!

  43. Francis says

    Also, what Bill said is 100% right, obviously. Homophobia should be and progressively is being shut down. Because it’s inhumane, and it’s hateful, and it’s damaging to our society as a whole, and unlike what T.I. thinks, it’s not just gay people who understand this. Racism has been shut down, sexism has been shut down, but when it comes to gays, some people just continue to believe it’s perfectly alright to be homophobic, using the justifications “freedom of speech” and “my beliefs”.

    Really, what a multiple time felonious jail inmate has to say means little. The second you see straight people being bashed for their sexual orientation is the second that any of these hypocritical and homophobic straights are in line to advise our community.

  44. Jexer says

    No we will not ‘chill out’ when we’re being marginalized, discriminated against, threatened, attacked, maimed and killed.

    No we will not ‘chill out’ when we’re so direly outnumbered by bigots who feel crimes ‘against us’ automatically deserve minimal or no punishment at all.

    You’d still be sitting in the back of the bus, casting 3/5ths of a vote, hanged with impunity for crimes someone else committed and unable to use regular water fountains if blacks had just ‘chilled out’ instead of speaking up against injustice.

    Until society speaks for us as equals, we must speak for ourselves more loudly. That bothers you? TOO BAD.

  45. kelehe says

    Well said, Bill Perdue.

    And David Ehrenstein…”TI commented on one line from the whole rant”

    Why did he do that? It’s called minimzing. He just made a little joke (in the middle of a hate rant, including stabbing his own son if he were gay)

  46. Antonio says

    I agree with TI. Gay people, especially in the US, are so so sensitive about everything! SO much controversy is made about who said what, and then GLAAD gets involved in everyone’s business, I mean, learn to take a damn joke.

  47. new-new says

    @ David E.

    It’s funny how people criticize rap music by complaining elements of homophobia and sexism that only exists is some music by some artists, but those same people don’t mention the sexism or sexual objectification of women that’s prominent in other parts of our society like television and other genres of music. A lot of rock music is equally as sexist but isn’t criticized. A lot of television programming is terribly sexist and homophobic yet doesn’t receive the same criticism.

    If you’re going to scrutinize a genre of music, don’t generalize and used the same magnifying glass in observing other (white) elements of our culture.

  48. walter says

    if they have their rights to the anti- gay comments then we should also have the rights to ours an to also have the right to boycott those that don’t like our rights. our money is ours to spend or not spend as we like. so if i don’t like what traci morgan says i won’t watch 30 rock as simple as that.

  49. JL says

    Hilarious. So this loser, who has possibly an 8th grade education, has the ability to form this kind of opinion? Does he realize the can of worms he just opened? Ok, here’s my response: I think black men who screw white girls are the scum of the earth, the marriages should be banned, and white parents should teach their daughters to kick these guys in the nuts if they try hitting on them. This is from watching way too many white girls get mooched off of, beaten up, pregnant, dumped, lied to, ripped off, and after these guys get her pregnant and empty her account and total her car, it’s off to the next white girl.

    So if you want a ‘battle of wits’ about not being ashamed to be anti-gay, then I’m your guy. People like this rapper are nothing but pieces of zhit that only take up space and contribute nothing to society. When you actually work, pay taxes, man up and support your 11 kids from the 11 girls you screw every year, then you have the right to call yourself a man and be taken seriously. Otherwise, stick to what you know: sex with white girls, beating them up, ripping them off, and all the while, calling yourself a ‘churchgoin’ man’ – right. That’s so 1991 – we aren’t fooled anymore by your bullsh!t.

  50. uu says

    disagree or agree with him – but why does he have an “8th grade education?” have you listened to his lyrics? actually, have you ever listened to hiphop at all?

  51. says

    They’re all lucky if they get to the 8th grade, JL. Yet we’re supposed to think of them as “Hip-Hop Artists”

    Whine all you want to “New New” — (C)Rap speaks for itself.

    As for T.I. , I have every reason to suspect he’s on the Down Low.

    When do get get the sex tape? Hmmmmm?

  52. Portland says

    He says “…and if you’re against it you should have the right to be against it in peace.’

    Would he say the same thing to people in the Klan and their views about black people?

  53. Colin says

    What exactly does T.I. mean when he says “…if you’re against it (being gay) you should have the right to be against it in peace.”?

    He says this while defending someone who joked about being physically violent against gays.

    Tracy Morgan jokes that if his son “better talk to me like a man and not in a gay voice or I’ll pull out a knife and stab that little n**ger to death.”

  54. Hollywood, CA says

    We really need stages to define straight people’s mentality on homosexuality/gay issues. Then, maybe it would be easier to understand and process these stupid remarks:








    TI makes it seem as if being gay is akin to liking Country music. And if it was, it would be okay for you to say “I don’t like country music.” It still probably wouldn’t be okay to actively HATE the people that like country music, but you get my point.

    I think a good rule is if you replace HOMOSEXUAL/GAY with African-American/Black, would you still agree with the statement?

  55. Christian says

    T.I.’s comments unleash racism among gays who miss some of the larger points raised by others in this forum. If you’re using his ignorant comments to justify your own racist observations, what’s the difference between you & him? In my opinion, to quote T.I. himself, anyone who is racist or homophobic is ‘piss-poor morally’. But, you’re still human, and deserve a second chance. T.I., do you just want our money, or do you actually strive for a deeper existence like your lyrics suggest? I’m sure the answer is both, so I would challenge you to go beyond sound bites to magazine reporters and, like Tracy Morgan, explain what you really mean. And, if what you really mean is that performers deserve to be ‘respected’ when they spout anti-gay views on the basis of ‘freedom of speech’, then the only thing we as LGBT/ally-respecting folk can do in a capitalist world is speak in turn with our dollars- ignore him, and his music. Then & only then will he fade from any spotlight.

  56. Fenrox says

    To be fair, Does TI even know the “Jokes” that got Tracy in trouble? It wasn’t the above, hilarious, joke, it was an awkward too-far rant that was more violent than lighthearted.

    Also to be fair, Who cares what anyone person thinks?

  57. Peter says

    Oh TI, I’m sure you would totally agree that free speech would include any discrimination, and in that case I should be able to drop N-bombs about you and your people as much as I want, right? I mean, it’s American to be able to speak freely, so that’s okay with you, right?

Leave A Reply