Black Eyed Peas leader Will.i.am raised some eyebrows during the MTV VMAs pre-show last night (Sept. 12) by covering his face with black makeup while performing alongside Nicki Minaj. The rapper took to Twitter today to defend his appearance, which some have decried as comparable to blackface.
"Just because I wear all black including head mask as expression and emphasize my outfit, it shouldn't be looked at as racial," will.i.am tweeted. After receiving more negative feedback, the rapper added, "Are you guys serious? My outfit set 'black people back 100 yrs' choose your twits wisely. No education sets people back, no jobs, bad health."
Will.i.am, who also tweeted that "there are far more important things 2 bark about... not a black man wearing all black everything," sported the makeup while performing Minaj's new single "Check It Out." His matching black leather outfit seemed to mirror the superhero getup featured on the song's cover art.