M.I.A is no stranger to controversy, but her newest comments have us giving an intense side eye.

GIF: giphy
Photo: giphy
In an interview with England’s Evening Standard Magazine, the “Swagger Like Us” rapper spoke on this year’s Super Bowl Halftime Show- and called out Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar for their lack of response to the Syrian refugee crisis. M.I.A, born Mathangi ‘Maya’ Arulpragasam, told Evening Standard that “It’s interesting that in America the problem you’re allowed to talk about is Black Lives Matter. It’s not a new thing to me — it’s what Lauryn Hill was saying in the 1990s, or Public Enemy in the 1980s. Is Beyoncé or Kendrick Lamar going to say Muslim Lives Matter? Or Syrian Lives Matter? Or this kid in Pakistan matters? That’s a more interesting question.”

As you can imagine, Twitter immediately jumped on this comment and started flooding her timeline with their two cents:

M.I.A responded to criticism and tried to clarify her statements on Twitter, but the damage was already done.

The Anglo-Sri Lankan artist has made a successful career for herself using hip hop, rap, and electronic influences to push themes of immigration, colonialism and the growing refugee crisis to the forefront of pop culture. With videos like “Borders” and “Born Free”, M.I.A has a huge platform to invite discussion on these issues with her global fanbase. Similarly, black American artists like Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar use their influence to bring attention to the uniquely black issues facing their audiences. Although they are known for promoting issues close to them, it’s not their responsibility to go to bat for everyone -- especially given the pervasive anti-blackness present in other communities of color and their reluctance to come out in support of #BlackLivesMatter...or when critical artists' entire careers are based off of the culture of black people.
Photo: giphy
Photo: giphy

M.I.A, we were rooting for you, but sometimes you need to stay in your lane.

Photo: wifflegif
Photo: wifflegif

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