UPDATED 11/18, 11 a.m. ET: Lakeith Stanfield escalated the situation over the weekend by uploading a song titled “Automatic,” complete with some eyebrow-raising cover art. As Stereogum notes, it includes the bar, “I’m black, I’m Atlanta, I’m the Hall of Fame/Insecure, you afraid, you’s a Charlamagne.”
The YouTube description for “Automatic” says the actor from hits like Atlanta, Get Out, and Sorry to Bother You is building toward Self Control, an album “about embracing the chaotic" that's "coming later.”
See original story below.
More than a week after Nicki Minaj was slammed over her criticism of black media, Atlanta actor Lakeith Stanfield found himself facing a similar controversy.
Earlier this week, the 28-year-old actor shared a now-deleted Instagram post that accused popular black outlets of harming the African American community. "The shade room, lipstick Alley, breakfast club, worldstar, and many others are or anti black," the text image read.
Lakeith explained his stance in the caption:
It’s a fact that a lot of these platforms are usually or tend to be feeding grounds for negative reinforcement toward BLACK 'nonconformists'. They bolster faux vanity and hold a white supremacists scope over black men and women often highlighting negative attributes and downplaying mind expanding ones. They serve as bottomless coward consumption pits and digital, audio, or otherwise slave mentatilty museums. @ all you want."
Charlamagne tha God caught wind of the actor's comments and responded in a Charlamagne way. The Breakfast Club co-host named Stanfield the "Donkey of the Day" (Nov. 14), before defending his syndicated radio show.
"You can say any and everything about me. I’ve damn near heard it all about myself online, but what you won’t do is ever fix your lips to call one of my platforms, especially The Breakfast Club, anti-Black," Charlamagne said on air, before reading Stanfield's caption. "I strive every day to be the perfect balance of ratchetness and righteousness, alright. There isn’t another show out there that goes from Byron Allen to Blac Youngsta like it’s nothing."
Charlamagne went on to say he was receptive to critiques, acknowledging he and his co-hosts,"have made plenty of mistakes" on air. However, he made it clear he would not tolerate being called "anti-black," especially from someone who he believes caters to white media.
"Young king, I know for a fact you don't take the chances that I do, every day, in the name of blackness," he said. "That's exactly why you didn't call out any white media outlets, because your publicist, your agent, and those Hollywood executives you work for would have had a fit. You would've never taken that chance."
He continued: "See, as a black person, it's safe to go at black outlets...but you would never fix your mouth to any of the white outlets that do the same damn thing...so who's the real coward? Who's really got the slave mentality if it's easier to call out your own—black people—then it is to go [after] others—white folk."
Charlamagne then accused Stanfield of ignoring black outlets on the red carpet, and then encouraged the actor "to be the change you want to see." He then pointed to a number of instances when Stanfield either failed to use his platform to "elevate the conversation" or expand the minds of audiences. Charlamagne specifically mentioned the actor's previous appearance on The Breakfast Club as well as a 2018 freestyle that included homophobic lyrics.
"You haven't always been this woke warrior you claim to be," Charlamagne said. "In fact, you apologized for that freestyle. You know why? Because you know Hollywood don't play that ... they will cancel you so quick that the only outlets who would accept you and still embrace you is the black ones.... You talk so crazy about black outlets, but when you come on the black outlets, it's not like you're being this intellectual beacon of light."
You can hear Charlamagne's full comments below.