Tyler, The Creator On Being Barred From The U.K.: “It’s Opening A Door For Anyone To Be Banned”

“I’m bummed out.”

September 01, 2015
Tyler, The Creator On Being Barred From The U.K.: “It’s Opening A Door For Anyone To Be Banned” Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

Tyler, the Creator recently spoke with The Guardian about England’s decision to prevent him from entering the country on the grounds that he promotes “behaviors unacceptable in the UK.”

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The rapper sounded baffled and frustrated in the interview. “It all came out of nowhere,” he noted. “I was [in London] in May, dude. Two months later they’re like: ‘Hey, uh, yeah, we reviewed music from a long time ago out of nowhere, [and] you can’t come in.’ What?”

“Now [the UK government] are just followers,” he continued. “Everyone is a follower, just following what other countries are doing. Now I’m getting treated like a terrorist. I’m bummed out because it’s like, dude, I’m not homophobic. I’ve said this since the beginning. The ‘hating women’ thing—it’s so nuts. It’s based on things I made when I was super-young, when no one was listening.”

Tyler also points out the administration’s mistake in conflating an artist’s beliefs with the views expressed in his or her art. “The thing that irks me about it is that the paper… clearly states that these songs were written from [the perspective of] an alter ego—which means they obviously did some research on these songs that they’re detaining me for. So the argument is right there! This song is written from an alter ego—I’m not like this! You could watch any interview and see my personality, see the guy I am. I wouldn’t hurt a fly.”

The MC adds an ominous warning: “Because of this, it’s opening a door for anyone to be banned.” Read his full interview here, and check out his FADER cover story.

Tyler, The Creator On Being Barred From The U.K.: “It’s Opening A Door For Anyone To Be Banned”