Wiz Khalifa strikes a pose (or three) and answers 20 questions for his latest spread in Playboy. The Pittsburgh rapper gets candid about his upbringing in Pittsburgh, the Black Lives Matter movement, his online squabble with Kanye West and his relationship with ex-wife Amber Rose in retrospect.
Grab the highlights below.
On growing up in Pittsburgh:
It was f—ed-up and really dark. A lot of shootings and gang violence. I saw people get killed. You’d get off the bus and somebody would be dead and they’d be cleaning it up. A lot of waking up in the morning and seeing people you knew dead on the news.
On police brutality:
Hell, yeah. Cops there are crazy. I’ve never been pulled over without them having a gun to my head. Even with traffic stops, they’ll put a gun to your head and say, “Get the f— out the car. What you got?” Searching you, breaking sh–, twisting your arm. They’re cool about weed, though. I got jammed up a lot in Pittsburgh, but I never did real time.
On the Black Lives Matter movement:
It’s about knowledge. A lot of people are surprised that this still exists, and when the media puts it out there, people get upset. But it’s about education and figuring out how to defend yourself and how to fight back and not be a victim. They victimize us because we don’t know. Body cameras? That sh– is just to make people think we’re safe. We ain’t safe. It’s not about fighting the cops physically. You have to know how to outsmart them, and what they can and can’t do to you. That won’t make things all good, but it will help level the playing field.
On the Academy Awards diversity backlash:
I didn’t pay attention to that too much, because I feel like black people are always being sh– on. They stand up and sh– on us publicly at the Oscars, and when you put gas on it, then it becomes a thing. Black people should boss up and say “We don’t give a f—,” and then really not give a f—. If you nominate me and I get an award, cool. But if you don’t, I don’t give a f—.
On relationship with Amber Rose:
I feel like not being in that relationship helped me out a lot. I learned how to be present where I need to be present. I’d been present in the relationship, but at that age and with what was going on, it just wasn’t right for me. It helps to walk away sometimes, even though it was super hard.
On his divorce playing out in public:
Dealing with a breakup or a divorce is hard enough, let alone for it to be public and on TV and radio. Suddenly everyone has advice. I’m a private dude, so I only talk to my family and the people next to me. I don’t trust anybody with information, so I would never tell a rapper how I really felt.
On getting married again:
I think I will, but it will be later. It was cool; it was fun. I learned a lot. Things that would’ve taken me much longer to learn, I learned in a short period of time. I feel like I’ll probably get married again when I’m in my 50s. I was sad after it ended, but I wasn’t depressed; I’ve never really been depressed in my life. I was sad because we were going through a lot and my son was involved, and that hurt me because my main goal is to raise my son how I want. I’m a control freak, and not being able to control that was weird. I didn’t know how to deal with it and didn’t understand that feeling. A year later, I’m way smarter and better equipped to deal with it.
On his e-beef with Kanye West:
That was a weird situation, because it was something I would do in real life. All I did was speak my mind. I’m a Max B fan, and if me and Kanye were in a room and he said, “Yo, I’mma name my album Waves,” I’d be like, “Don’t do that. You’re not allowed to do that.” Nobody really does that these days. Nobody checks n—as like, “Nah, n—a.” No one is above being spoken to, and if you’ve got real friends, they’ll tell you how they feel. That’s how I handle all my situations in real life. Even if I have a problem with somebody, I’m not gonna advertise it. We can go around the corner and we can really do it. But all in front of people? That’s not me. N—as talk sh– every day, and n—as say sh– about my ex, niggas say sh– about my kid. It’s all good. There’s competition in rap, and Kanye obviously sees me as that.
Read the full feature here.