ARTS COMMENTARY: Drake’s and Kendrick’s lyrics pack a punch … and people must hold them accountable

ARTS COMMENTARY: Drake’s and Kendrick’s lyrics pack a punch ... and people must hold them accountable
Illustration by Nicolette Capalbo

A once-seemingly friendly feud between rappers Drake and Kendrick Lamar has been unraveling for years, but it wildly intensified starting in March to the point where they wove criminal allegations into the lyrics of their respective diss tracks. Bantering back and forth over who is the best rapper can be entertaining for listeners, but it has gotten to the point where fans now have to question the validity of the legal shots fired between the two. 

According to AP News, in his songs, Drake has accused Kendrick of abusing his long-time fiance, Whitney Alford. They also reported that Kendrick has retaliated back, claiming that Drake is guilty of grooming underage girls, human trafficking and having a secret 11-year-old daughter. These accusations could involve serious consequences if proven accurate and brought to trial, including significant jail time. In spite of this, there has been no news of police involvement or even questioning whether the rappers’ claims appear to be true. 

Although police were forced to get involved when a security guard was shot outside of Drake’s home in Toronto, there are no updates about deeper investigations into the allegations the rappers have thrown at each other. Are these claims true or simply defamatory? Is their entire feud an attempt at garnering public attention and building their platforms? Whether it is or isn’t, simply making this claim in any other setting would immediately seize the attention of investigative agencies, so why aren’t these musicians’ words getting the same reaction?

No matter how much wealth and fame Drake and Kendrick gained due to their music careers, there is no justification for treating them as if they deserve “get out of jail free” cards when accused of criminal allegations. Something that would normally result in a frenzy of lawyers and court cases has only provided them with more media attention, and therefore more profit.

Additionally, with all of the allegations from both camps, fans are beginning to take sides and shun one of the artists in order to prove their loyalties. There is a line to be drawn between selfish artists being exposed for rudeness to fans and criminals accused of grooming underage children. In any case, fan response should correspond with the severity of accusations. Some Kendrick fans may urge a complete ban on listening to Drake’s music, where others may want to separate the art from the artist. Whether Drake is completely removed from daily playlists or his concert ticket sales go down, how can one listen to Drake’s songs without being reminded of the allegations hurled at him? Supporting an artist who did terrible things inherently supports them, even if it may not feel that way.

Although it may seem to be the right thing to do to stop listening to boycott one artist, the question still remains on how people are supporting either artist considering the allegations aimed at both of them. 

Between all the different online conversations about canceling Drake, Kendrick’s name seems to be forgotten. While the allegations against Drake may be more incendiary, Kendrick is still not innocent, according to Drake’s claims. It becomes hypocritical to remove all Drake songs off your playlist but blast Kendrick’s music a second later. If you are going to stop listening to Drake for the horrible accusations against him, the same treatment should be dealt out to Kendrick. 

Some people may argue that canceling the music of Drake and Kendrick does nothing, as they remain enormously wealthy stars nevertheless. While it may not completely remove Drake or Kendrick from the public eye, cutting them off from your support as not only artists but also as people shows that their actions are not acceptable. 

By not taking a deeper look into the music that Drake and Kendrick have recently released to the public sphere, police and fans are essentially condoning turning a blind eye to incriminating celebrity behavior. No matter how the feud between the two rappers continues to unfold, authorities should still investigate them nonetheless to reach an assuring conclusion for the potential victims and the public; people should not be left to question whether their favorite artist deserves jail time or another stream.

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Sophia Rosen
Sophia Rosen, Managing Editor
Sophia Rosen is a Managing editor on the 2024-2025 Wessex Wire. In her freetime, she enjoys playing tennis and hanging out with her friends. Fun Fact: Her favorite ice cream flavor is rocky road.  
Ella Hermans
Ella Hermans, Editor-in-Chief
Ella Hermans is the 2024-2025 Editor-in-Chief of the Wessex Wire! She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, listening to music and going to the beach. She plays tennis for the West Essex team, and her favorite show is "New Girl".