Rapper Megan Thee Stallion calls for the protection of Black women during SNL performance

Following Breonna Taylor’s verdict, in which none of the officers involved in her death were charged with murder, the Houston rapper used her platform to call out injustice against Black women


Brianna Taylor, Managing Editor

Houston rapper Megan Thee Stallion used her Saturday Night Live debut to call out Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, who did not charge any police officers for Breonna Taylor’s murder. But many believe her 4-minute performance, which included a black and white visual that read “protect Black women,” was also a response to Toronto rapper Tory Lanez’s 17-track album, where he details his side of Megan Thee Stallion’s July shooting.

After over a month of silence from Lanez, who allegedly shot Megan Thee Stallion in her foot, he responded to the allegations on Sep. 25. The diss track, which dropped two days after the nation learned of Taylor’s grand jury decision, skyrocketed to No.1 on Apple Music and the conversation exploded within the Black community. 

“We listen to you say you care about Black women when the verdict came out, but two days later when Torey Lanez’s album came out, everything shifted,” Morgan alumnus Kendra Speight said. “I can’t trust you Black men and it’s unfortunate that I don’t know who’s a real ally and who’s not.” 

The 22-year-old elementary school music teacher, who recently earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in vocal performance, said it’s difficult finding the right words to empower her young Black female-students. But when Lanez’s album came out, she was adamant in defending Megan Thee Stallion against her male counterparts, who discredited the rapper’s story. 

Megan Thee Stallion originally told police that she cut the bottom of her foot on broken glass. She later recanted her statement and named Lanez as her assailant, but not without being shamed by the public and her story being picked apart online.

“The timing of this album and the verdict for Breonna Taylor was ridiculously tone-deaf, that was not acceptable at all,” Speight said. “The things that were discussed on the album…ridiculous.”

English major Autumn Wilson, who refuses to listen to the album “Daystar,” said it epitomized a lack of respect towards Black women, who are placed at the intersection of race and gender. She said those who have darker skin and more masculine features receive worse treatment. 

“People don’t even realize that their actions say the closer you are to proximity to being Black, the closer proximity you are to being a woman—the more we hate you,” she said. “To put it plainly, everyone hates Black women—Black men included.”

But MK Asante, a screenwriting and animation professor, said Lanez’s behavior is below the lines of criticism and therefore, he doesn’t acknowledge him or anyone else who behaves in that manner.

“I don’t like to give breath and energy to people like Tory Lanez because they don’t speak for Black men. They don’t speak for me,” he said. “They represent a foulness and toxicity within the culture.”

Therefore, the 37-year-old award-winning writer, filmmaker and rapper is intentional in the content he creates. But he’s even more conscious of not letting one person’s actions define an entire community. 

“The Black men that I know and the Black men that I associate with protect Black women and love Black women,” he said. “So, let’s not forget that’s my reality.”

While the answer isn’t black and white, Wilson said the encouragement of intersectionality is the first step to peace within the Black community. 

“Whether it’s the structure of privilege or structures of oppression, until we truly acknowledge that, we’re never going to have a harmonious relationship between the genders of our race,” Wilson said.