Shamir removed his recent "Straight Boy" video from YouTube on Wednesday after the video's director and co-star, Ryan Carpenter, was accused of rape.
As Brooklyn Vegan points out, in a YouTube comment on the since-deleted video, a user wrote, "That white guy is Ryan Carpenter and he is from Tampa and raped my friend and other people… a lot of peeps kno that guy n he has a rep #metoo. Shamir stands with rapists.”
"So I had to take down the "Straight Boy" video because as it turns out the actor and director in the video is an abuser… I know.. the irony," Shamir wrote on Twitter. "Turns out out you can’t even find cishet guy thats not a shitty person to even play a shitty person. and above all im sorry to the survivors and thank yall for letting me know!"
In a statement provided to The FADER, Shamir wrote:
"I found out through a disturbing comment left on the video, so i immediately just took it down. i might do an alt video, but not sure as of now, just quite sad because i considered this person a friend too.
I do believe it to be true because a while back he told me a girl accused him of abuse in college, he denied it and said it was all chalked up to just a misunderstanding. I took the info at face value because his friend from college concurred. I didn't know his reputation back in Florida because we met in Brooklyn and would just see each other either out there or in Philly. So when i saw the comment my heart dropped to my stomach. Obviously i approached him about it, and he left me with little to no explanation or piece of mind, and even seemed quite nonchalant about it, so i told him im taking it down and did so immediately. "
In a recent interview with The FADER, Shamir explained the significance of the song and video. "Somehow straight white males were able to use queer and LGBTQ aesthetics for their own personal gain and be a part of the community," he said of his start in the music industry. "It was insane to see...I don't even have words. That video was my words because I couldn't put it in words. I had to show it."
Ryan Carpenter discussed the creation of the video in an interview with Creative Loafing. “Shamir's first album was incredibly empowering to queer and people of color,” Carpenter said. "In this song he is calling out straight white boys on our shit, I’m all about it.”
Shamir has uploaded a new video of himself performing an acoustic version of the song. The clip opens with, “Fuck sexual abuse. Fuck rapists.” Watch that video below.