Azealia Banks | Donna Summer | Jake Shears | News

Jake Shears Is Not Buying Azealia Banks' 'Context' Argument


Gay singer Jake Shears has waded into the Azealia Banks versus Perez Hilton feud, and he's definitely not standing by Banks, who blew up her gay fan base by called Hilton a "messy faggot" on Twitter.


Banks claimed that her bisexuality, the context of her remark and a complicated hierarchy of gendered denigrations of both gay men and women, made her use of the f-word a-okay, but Shears, frontman for Scissor Sisters, disagrees, writing, "It all about context. And right now, I'm sorry, but context is not on your side." He also reminded Banks that singer Donna Summer was "ostracized" for years for her past comments about gay fans, something that may very well happen to Banks.


GLAAD also came out against Banks. "[That] is an ugly, archaic word that was used to stigmatize a population of people who suffer high rates of violence both here in the U.S. and abroad," said Matt Kane, the group's Associate Director of Entertainment Media. "As far as we’ve come in this society, seeing it used by an artist many young people may look up to is painful, but even more so for those young fans, many of whom GLAAD has heard from."

GLAAD also offered, via Twitter, Banks an opportunity to open a dialogue that they hope will help her change her ways, or at least change her word choice.


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  1. I think that this is exactly what Banks wants. I guess she thinks there is no such thing as bad press. If it can work for Chris Brown why not her? It's sad and pathetic, but then again, so is she.

    Posted by: Wayne | Jan 6, 2013 10:54:33 AM

  2. Azealia Banks?

    Never heard of her. Sounds like one of those divas that some gay men turn into an icon...
    which I never understood. Nor did I ever care for that disco-type music. INsufferable!
    I think most of these diva singers really at base disrespect gay men. It's a weird relationship between that segment of the gay community and the divas they seem to hunger for. I don't get it at all. I just don't get the appeal at all.

    Posted by: Dan CObb | Jan 6, 2013 10:58:48 AM

  3. Jeez, I'm gay and I think Perez is a faggot! And thsat's in no defense of Azealia....So f'ing sue me....We call one another these names ALL the time. Please.

    Posted by: yeahisaidit | Jan 6, 2013 11:00:52 AM

  4. Dan Cobb what a boring queer you are.

    Posted by: Stephen | Jan 6, 2013 11:15:30 AM

  5. not sure why jake shears joined the fray, and doubly unsure why he used 'donna summer' example...but this might turn into a white vs black thing...that won't be cute.

    Posted by: shane | Jan 6, 2013 11:16:07 AM

  6. @shane why are you trying to make this a race thing? I don't like Hilton either, but faggot is an ugly word and I don't particularly care to hear it from LGBT anymore than from str8 people.

    Posted by: Jerry | Jan 6, 2013 11:20:57 AM

  7. Adam Lambert said "fag" on a show a while back. No one cared. Azealia Banks called Perez - someone she doesn't know - a faggot on Twitter in order to hurt his feelings. People care. Because they're totally different situations. Get a brain, gurl.

    Posted by: Billy | Jan 6, 2013 11:22:37 AM

  8. You know what annoys me about a lot of gay/bi men, and a lot of straight girls who are friends with these gay/bi men?

    They'll say "I'm not offended by the word fa**ot/that's so gay (which is finally dying out)/queer/etc.", they'll say they use these terms all the time, and yet they DO NOT like it when someone who isn't in the "in" group uses these words haphazardly, uses these words aggressively and with offensive intent, or just uses these words without any care. They may not get actively hurt by it but they don't like it and it annoys and offends them, it hits them to a certain extent. They feel it.

    It's like the black community and the n-word. This whole not being offended by these words unless it's used like __________ and used by ____________ is sort of ridiculous. The overwhelming majority of gay men do not like the word fa**ot being used in an offensive manner, whether they say they do or don't, and thus that's why it's an issue.

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 6, 2013 11:25:09 AM

  9. Banks was featured on a scissor sisters track

    Posted by: Steve | Jan 6, 2013 11:25:16 AM

  10. Banks was featured on a scissor sisters track

    Posted by: Steve | Jan 6, 2013 11:25:17 AM

  11. When someone says "out of context", I hear "I'm suffering painful backlash for freely expressing my own bigotry."

    Posted by: Mitch | Jan 6, 2013 11:30:13 AM

  12. Shane- I'm guessing that Shears commented on this because the Scissor Sisters did a song with Azealia earlier this year.

    Posted by: Treb | Jan 6, 2013 11:31:07 AM

  13. ah, okay.

    Posted by: shane | Jan 6, 2013 11:35:10 AM

  14. have at it, then. kids have got amuse themselves somehow these days.

    Posted by: shane | Jan 6, 2013 11:36:41 AM

  15. I don't like her, I really don't like him; slap her in the mouth once and call it a day...

    Posted by: Mark | Jan 6, 2013 11:36:47 AM

  16. Overly hype. If black people can call each other niggas.. why can't a bi Girl call a gay guy a faggot?

    Perez Hiliton called a faggot... but that's not frowned upon?

    Posted by: B | Jan 6, 2013 11:44:02 AM

  17. Pretty sure that WAS frowned upon, B. Loudly.

    Posted by: chris | Jan 6, 2013 11:47:53 AM

  18. I'll go out on a limb here and say that Azealia's visible minority fanbase, (racial and other) whether gay or straight, are not all that bothered by her calling Perez a "messy faggot". As for whether or not her bisexuality gives her a "community pass" one can easily understand her thinking provided one does view the conversation through the prism of "in the community" communication common to minority groups. That so many are angry with her for referring to Perez in this fashion seems to be a very "neo conservative" reaction to what was a very common turn of phrase within the gay community towards one of its own.
    I'd rather blame this situation on the conservative thinking becoming epidemic in America's Homosexual community, rather than a failing on Azealia or her choice of words.
    Suddenly we gays are thin skinned, without bite, bland, ordinary and easily offended. We've become the very people who oppressed us, and from whom we are fighting so hard for inclusion.

    Posted by: Stuart | Jan 6, 2013 11:51:16 AM

  19. Seems to me that Towleroad has more important things to worry about.

    Posted by: Continuum | Jan 6, 2013 11:53:06 AM

  20. I agree with Continuum. I couldn't care less about either of these people. At least Perez (for once) has shown some restraint in his response.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 6, 2013 12:00:04 PM

  21. Shorter Stuart: "Stop oppressing me by calling out people on their use of bigoted language."

    Posted by: Acronym Jim | Jan 6, 2013 12:00:06 PM

  22. Put Twitter, a way of impulsively expressing one's thoughts better kept to oneself, and a lack of education and maybe a little alcohol or other intoxicant together and you have a formula for widespread promulgation of regrettable messages. The aftermath is that the Tweeter is left with the choice of apologizing profusely and begging forgiveness or defending the indefensible. Some people have been raised not to apologize so they keep digging a deeper hole.

    I want to be compassionate when something like this happens, but I think it better to sacrifice the individual's feelings to the greater good of using this "incident" to help make progress toward eradicating the "f" word from our collective consciousnesses.

    No doubt socioeconomic background has something to do with this. We also need to think about where AzeliaBanks comes from and where, if anywhere, she was educated. There's an opportunity there to reform the education system and to do some "countermessaging".

    Finally, I am wondering why Perez Hilton is always at the center of these dustups. Wasn't he the one involved with the beauty queen who advocated "opposite marriage". Let's not blame the victim, but I hate to read manufactured news.

    Posted by: Fahd | Jan 6, 2013 12:01:23 PM

  23. She said it about Perez Hilton,people! Perez Hilton!!

    Posted by: Alan Brickman | Jan 6, 2013 12:26:57 PM

  24. Umm, Fahd, he's at the middle of them because he says nasty/childish things about people on his widely read blog, and it provokes people. It's not really a mystery.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 6, 2013 12:42:53 PM

  25. Dan Cobb impression:

    "Azealia Banks? Never heard of her. She sounds like a place where people put money. I don't know why gay men like Banks. Banks lending to people who couldn't afford to pay them back helped to ruin our economy. It's weird that gay men would want to have anything to do with Banks. I just don't understand it. The end."

    Lesson: if the first thing you type is that you don't know what you're talking about, it's best to stop talking right then.

    The More You Know!™

    Posted by: John Dough | Jan 6, 2013 12:52:47 PM

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