Rapper Future has defended his collaborator Lil Wayne over the controversial lyrics about slain black teenager Emmett Till in his latest track Karate Chop, insisting the hip-hop star actually highlighted an important issue in the song.
In an unauthorised remix of Future's song, Lil Wayne makes reference to Till, who was pistol-whipped and murdered in 1955 for flirting with a white girl in America's Deep South, rapping, "Beat the p**sy up like Emmett Till."
His words infuriated the civil rights icon's family and the Lollipop hitmaker was subsequently dropped as spokesman for Mountain Dew soda by bosses at parent company PepsiCola.
However, Future, real name Nayvadius Cash, has spoken out to defend his friend, claiming that despite the negative attention the song attracted, the lyrics actually raised awareness of civil rights history.
He tells radio station Power106 Fm, "I never thought it was going to get so much attention, but I think overall, the whole situation, he did bring light in a positive way to what happened. Even though they probably thought it was negative, he brought positive energy to the situation because a lot of people don’t even know (who Emmett Till was)...
"He raised awareness to people who didn’t even know Emmett Till. The young kids that never even knew what happened to him… I don’t believe he in any way, form, or fashion did it out of disrespect toward the family."