India.Arie Criticized for Suggesting Megan Thee Stallion and Janelle Monáe's Performances Are Too Sexual

In a recent Instagram comment, the singer mentioned both artists in connection with their respective Essence Fest appearances, saying "this won't age well."

india arie megan thee stallion and janelle monae are pictured
Images via Getty/Amy Sussman, Getty/Kaitlyn Morris / FilmMagic, and Getty/Kaitlyn Morris / FilmMagic
india arie megan thee stallion and janelle monae are pictured

India.Arie’s recent remarks about Megan Thee Stallion and Janelle Monáe, as she more or less predicted when making the comments in question, have received pushback.

In case you missed it, the singer shared a lengthy comment on a post from the official Essence Instagram account in which the publication was celebrating one of numerous highlights from the latest edition of its Essence Fest event. Both Megan and Janelle were on this year’s lineup, which also featured a range of additional performers including (but not limited to) Lauryn Hill and Gucci Mane. 

"The issue is what is CONTEXT," India.Arie wrote in a comment shared on the post seen above. "Humanity does EVERYTHING. But does EVERYTHING BELONG IN A STAGE. No. is everything for KIDS? No. is everything for EVERY BODY? NO. so when we as a culture make something like this main stream ... it shows a lack of discretion [and] discernment. To those in the comments who laugh at anyone who wants these things for [our] culture you certainly have that right. Just as many folks have the right to want our MAINSTREAM International export - [our] Music - to show us in a respectful light. Id like to go on the record saying : this wont age well and thats my issue."

Elaborating further, India.Arie made it clear that she has "love" for both Megan and Janelle; she also got ahead of any criticism of her comments by pointing out her disinterest in arguing about her take.

"[I] LOVE Janelle AND Meg the way i love us all AND i dont like this moment," she wrote. "Dont bother debating me lol idc and I DO this. for 25 yrs i’ve done THIS. so. read ponder or dont."

an instagram screenshot

The remarks haven’t been taken well by fans of either artists, nor by listeners who are more generally opposed to such talk. See a sampling of response below.

Janelle Monáe is currently fresh off the release of her fourth studio album, The Age of Pleasure, which features the well-received single "Lipstick Lover." Hear it here. Megan Thee Stallion, meanwhile, recently addressed the possibility of new music in an interview with InStyle.

"Right now, I'm focused on healing," Megan, whose Traumazine album arrived last August, told the outlet.

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