Nipsey Hussle, Homophobia and Toxic Black Masculinity

Nipsey Hussle at the Roc Nation Pre-Grammy Brunch on Feb. 7, 2015, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
Nipsey Hussle at the Roc Nation Pre-Grammy Brunch on Feb. 7, 2015, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Valerie Macon/Getty Images)

What is the gay “agenda”? Can you point me to the document that explains and outlines it? What is the goal of the gay agenda? How is it that with everything else going on, people want to point to the gay agenda as the thing that is tearing the black community apart?


Those questions are rhetorical.

You don’t have to bother trying to answer them because the point is simple: There is no gay agenda. Gay people are not trying to make everyone in the black community gay. Gay people are not trying to destroy the black family. Gay people honestly just want to mind their own business, and I’m sure they wish that you would do the same.

I bring this up because recently, California rapper Nipsey Hussle made a post on Instagram labeling “hyper violent,” “homo sexual [sic]” “abandoners” as the problems that are tearing down the black community. I disagree. You know what one of the biggest problems is in the black community? Toxic black masculinity.

Toxic masculinity is a set of harmful behavior patterns rooted in patriarchy in which men are hypersexual, misogynistic, homophobic, violent and unemotional. In black men, it is magnified because it is rooted in the idea that society is always trying to emasculate black men.

It’s toxic black masculinity that led Nipsey Hussle to post a photo of a large group of young black boys dressed in formal suits and tuxedos to Instagram with this caption:

Demonstration speaks louder than Conversation. They gone feed us every image of our men and boys but this one. No hyper violent...No homo sexual...No abandoners....JUS STRONG BLAC MEN AND YOUNG Men. RESPECT TO MY BIG HOMIE @bigu1 for Leading with love and intelligence. GOD IS WITH US WHO CAN GO AGAINST US 💪🏾


First, let’s unpack how he refers to violence, homosexuality and “abandoners” as being on the same level. As if homosexuality were violence. As if men who abandon their families did so because of homosexuality. As if violence begets abandonment.

Respectability politics govern his assumption that young men dressed in formal attire are not or cannot be violent. I am by no means suggesting that the young men in the photograph are violent; I am simply noting that the way one dresses is no indication of the presence of violent behavior or the lack thereof.


Toxic black masculinity led Nipsey to suggest that none of the young men are homosexual—something he simply cannot know for sure.

I don’t even know where the “abandoners” fit into this particular equation.

If you want to get at the heart of the problems in the black community, then let us call it what it is and address it honestly.


Toxic black masculinity is why our boys don’t understand how to express their emotions. They are told not to cry because crying is for sissies. They are often made to feel as if they have to fight or become physically aggressive to prove themselves. They then grow up to be emotionally crippled men who resort to violence when things don’t go their way.

They can’t take rejection and don’t know how to handle it, so a woman who tells a man “no” is likely to be harmed or even killed. Verbal and emotional abuse is a thing because this is the way a black man is supposed to express himself. There is no middle ground. There is only “soft” and “a real man.”


Toxic black masculinity denies young black boys their childhood. It exploits them sexually, leads them to believe that they control everything with the appendage swinging from their pelvis and hypersexualizes everything around them.

These boys grow up to be men who don’t understand that no means no. They grow up to be men who have not learned to properly express or handle their sexual urges. They become overly aggressive sexually, which often leads to sexual assault.


Toxic black masculinity treats women as property. We are simultaneously prizes and props. They want us to be a ho but make it classy and fashionable. They want us to let them lead us but also require that we do all the heavy lifting and emotional labor. They want us to let them hit it raw, then call us hos and “baby mamas” as a pejorative when they helped us make the babies in the first place.

Nipsey Hussle has a child with Lauren London, right? Are they married? Did he put a ring on it? Is he likely to become an abandoner sometime in the near future?


I guess at this point, he’s just trying to figure out whether he should “pull out” of his trophy or not.


Homophobia cannot exist without patriarchy, and toxic black masculinity is one of the strongest expressions and examples of patriarchy.

Before you begin to point fingers at gay men who don’t even want you, you should examine your own myopic and Hotep beliefs about what is causing the downfall of the black community. Look within. Until we do away with toxic black masculinity, we are always going to have problems in the black community.

News Editor for The Root. I said what I said. Period.


Mercenary Chef

The Gay Agenda:

Monday: be fabulous

Tuesday: be fabulous

Wednesday: have a fabulous brunch

Thursday: be fabulous

Friday: party like David Bowie

Saturday: be fabulous.

Sunday: prepare to be fabulous.

(Paraphrased from a friend’s Facebook.)