“I want to apologize to the LGBTQ+ community for the hurtful and triggering comments I made. Again, I apologize for my misinformed comments about HIV/AIDS and I know education on this is important. Love to all. God bless,” he wrote in a lengthy note Monday (Aug. 2) before signing off with his stage name.
The message from the 29-year-old rapper arrives on the same day as Day N Vegas dropped him from the upcoming bill in November, the third festival to remove DaBaby from the lineup following Governors Ball and Lollapalooza on Sunday.
Last week, DaBaby did not apologize for his statements and instead said that individuals who did not pay to attend the event should “shut the f— up.” The following day, the “Rockstar” rapper fired off several messages on Twitter about the critical response to his homophobic comments, apologizing to anyone affected by HIV/AIDS for his “insensitive” remarks but holding firm on the rest of his comments.
“Social media moves so fast that people want to demolish you before you even have the opportunity to grow, educate, and learn from your mistakes,” he wrote in the new note. “As a man who has had to make his own way from very difficult circumstances, having people I know publicly working against me— knowing that what I needed was education on these topics and guidance— has been challenging. I appreciate the many people who came to me with kindness, who reached out to me privately to offer wisdom, education, and resources. That’s what I needed and it was received.”
Elton John was among the most high-profile musicians to speak up after DaBaby’s controversial remarks, offering the rapper, his fans and other artists important information about HIV and AIDS, courtesy of his Elton John AIDS Foundation. “We must break down the stigma around HIV and not spread it,” John said. “As musicians, it’s our job to bring people together.”
The controversy stems from DaBaby’s July 25 set at Rolling Loud in Miami, where he told the crowd, “If you didn’t show up today with HIV, AIDS, or any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that’ll make you die in two to three weeks, then put your cellphone lighter up. Ladies, if your p—y smell like water, put your cellphone lighter up. Fellas, if you ain’t sucking di– in the parking lot, put your cellphone lighter up.”
After his viral tirade, fellow artists followed up with their own comments, including T.I. coming out in support of DaBaby, while Dua Lipa condemned her “Levitating” remix collaborator, writing on her Instagram Story: “I’m surprised and horrified at DaBaby’s comments. I really don’t recognize this as the person I worked with. I know my fans know where my heart lies and that I stand 100% with the LGTBQ community. We need to come together to fight the stigma and ignorance around HIV/AIDS.”
Baby’s upcoming shows include a performance for Hot Jamz 103 Summer Jam in Kansas on Aug. 14 and Hot 97’s Summer Jam at Met Life Stadium in New Jersey on Aug. 22. DaBaby is repped by Andrew Lieber at MAC Agency.
Update: On Sunday (Aug. 8), DaBaby’s Instagram post with his apology was removed from his account. Billboard reached out to a representative for DaBaby for comment.