Saturday night, a one Kiari Kendrell Cephus better known as Offset jumped his black ass on stage during the middle of his estranged wife’s performance to win back her heart, one Belcalis Marlenis Almanzar better known as Cardi B. This, of course, while she was making history as the first woman ever to headline “Rolling Loud.” I want to drag everyone who had a hand in this: the third a Migo, Offset and Cardi’s security and the Rolling Loud producers, who are all trash for having a hand in this,
From the footage, it was clear that Cardi B was not here for the telenovela gesture. A day or two before Offset rushed the stage, we saw him give humble apology over social media, rolled up into a birthday wish. We also saw a collective of rappers, who can’t seem to keep their own business out of the streets, admonishing the breakup and trying to pressure Cardi into taking Offset back. Mind you, these are the same rappers who will be quick to tell someone to get the fu*k out of their mentions, and mind their own damn business, but want to speak on her marriage. Really, what I want to know is: why do all of these male rappers think they can tell Cardi what is best for her? And why would Cardi B be required to think more of someone who obviously doesn’t think enough of her to honor their wedding vows or respect her workplace?
Doing something crazy for love is not the issue. We’ve all been there, or at least, we all could have been. Feelings can take us out of ourselves, but there comes a time when you become so accustomed to not being yourself in a relationship, that you might begin to forget who you are. While, I have never fought a stripper, I have had my share of baby-mama dramas, including a trip that a said baby-mama took with her parents to remove my ex-boyfriends belongings from my home. I have been on the tearful end of fights, a flying mini fridge, a set of twins born years into a toxic relationship, and three police reports. YEARS later, my aforementioned ex would call my innocent mother’s landline, because she still has one and because he was blocked on my phone. YEARRRSSSS after that, he called me from his aunt’s phone, claiming she just wanted to know how I was doing…que what?! This level of manipulation is classic abuse. His aunt didn’t care too much about my wellbeing when her favorite nephew was lumping me across the head. Repeatedly, over time, he has had friends and family call me on his behalf, begging me to forgo the little love for myself I had left and take him back. Can you imagine if the tables were turned? Could you imagine a man trying to make a decent living with two jobs, whose woman only worked his nerves, whose woman beat on him, didn’t cook, didn’t clean, was an unrepentant cheater, constantly begging to be taken back and even employing those in her life to do the same? That man wouldn’t be able to face the world if he succumbed to that, but somehow, women are wrong if they don’t.
We are quicker to accept the validity of a man’s hurt, than we are a woman’s hurt. But why do we have to wait on a Juelz Santana’s teeth to fall out before he finally gets ready to commit, thirteen kids later? Stop it. Why are a woman’s boundaries less important? Why is suffering through love until someone actually stops hurting you considered loyalty? Yes, the gesture is sweet, in a twisted-Truman Show way but we cannot forget that Cardi B is facing very serious legal charges, and could risk missing time with her daughter if convicted, because a man made her mad enough that she wanted to fight some strippers.
Cardi is rich and can afford to not be bothered because she doesn't need financial support. She is dry her eyes with Benjamins rich. She is more than capable of caring for herself and her daughter all alone. No judgement to these women but no one said anything to Emily B. Kimbella, and Chrissy, and Teiarra Mari, and Princess, and Yandy, about how “crazy” and perhaps desperate they looked accepting all kinds of unacceptable behaviors, but the moment a woman gets a backbone and realizes that her peace is more valuable than his peace of mind, it’s rapper dissertation time. Did The Game even wash his hands before he went and posted about someone else’s relationship? These niggas need to let Cardi B be. They only care because a loss of this hip hop union might mean that the women in their lives might feel that they need to make a run for it. Where were all of the “believe in love” rappers when Emily B. had to get a whole new set of teeth (and not voluntarily)? Why was no one speaking out with such concern then?
The hip-hopcrisy is astounding! Can you imagine the backlash Cardi B would’ve received had she jumped onstage, while Offset was at work, and said, “listen bruhhhh, I knowwwww I made you mad and publicly cheated on you, but right now, I WANT YOU!” She would’ve been labeled all kinds of crazy and delusional. She would’ve been labeled a psycho, pathetic, maybe even a stalker. But because she is a woman, and Offset is sorry, on so many levels, their story is beautiful.
Stop thinking that women owe men their compassion no matter what. The same men who only know how to show love through their apologies, will continue to embarrass and mistreat those they love so that they can keep saying sorry. Women do not have to continue to show grace when put in ungraceful situations. We can move on; actually we have to move on from this ride or die myth. That shit is gross and dangerous. Grand gestures of love, shouldn’t come after grand gestures of hurt. And by no means, am I insinuating that Offset is dangerous, but pain does not have to be physical to be real. Emotional abuse and manipulation can be just as damaging. Offset literally taking away Cardi B’s shine at Rolling Loud to prioritize his own feelings was devastating to watch. In very real-world circumstances, women are out here dying, because they have made the decision to leave a man. Didn't a man just shoot up a hospital because his fiancée left an obviously unhealthy relationship? Women die because they stay in situations that are unhealthy as well. Most women who are killed, are killed by their partners, and they are most likely to be killed in the first month AFTER they leave. They are hunted. They are stalked. They are interrupted at work. That’s not love. It’s power. Stop trying to make women feel bad for recognizing behavior they can’t tolerate, and then creating a solution that they feel comfortable with. If Cardi B does decide to leave that man, let her leave him. If she decides to take him back, that’s her choice too, but we need to respect women leaving relationships that no longer serve them, just like we respect every time a rapper leaves another woman alone.
(Photo: Scott Dudelson via Getty Images)
For the past 10 years, Yusef has been dictating all of the beauty trends we emulate via his most famous client, none other than Rihanna. He started out his career as a performer, but he ended up behind the scenes. In Hairstory, he details his rise in the industry from aspiring singer to creative directing the hair for Fenty x Puma.