Nicki Minaj recently raised a few eyebrows when she recited Maya Angelou’s poem, “Still I Rise” at the Shining a Light: A Concert for Progress on Race in America. Many critics felt that she wasn’t dressed appropriately to recite such a poem. But in a recent interview with Billboard, Minaj discussed the poem and why she choose it, as well as current today politics.
“It was the most spot-on poem that Nicki Minaj could have ever read. And it’s funny; it ended up proving a point. Because I remember going online after and lots of people said such beautiful things. But there was one lady, an older black woman, who said, “She shouldn’t be reading that poem.” And she discussed how I dressed. I love that she said that, because she doesn’t even realize the poem is discussing sexiness, owning your sex appeal. “Does my sexiness upset you?/Does it come as a surprise/That I dance like I’ve got diamonds/At the meeting of my thighs?” And this woman, she was discussing her PhDs, all this education she had — but she couldn’t put two and two together about the theme of the poem. My entire career has been that poem in a nutshell,” Minaj stated.
And the interesting thing, is that she couldn’t be any more correct.
Minaj also gave her opinion about those in the running for president, specifically Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. The Billboard interview made mention that the Minaj interview was done way before Trump’s comments about Muslims, I suppose to not get people jumping down Minaj’s throat.
“I support Hillary Clinton as woman,” she said. “Am I convinced that she should be the next president? I still want to be open-minded about everyone.”
“Obviously, I identify with her struggles as a woman. I identify with the fact that when she’s in that room and there are nothing but men there — there’s sometimes something in her that must feel intimidated. But I think that she uses that and turns it into a strength,” she added. “Because that’s what I’ve always done. And so I love her for sticking it out. She has gone through horrifying things, even within her marriage. She has been brave and weathered the storm. And continued being a boss. That’s something that every woman should feel inspired by, no matter if you’re voting for her or not.”
When asked about Donald Trump, however, the blunt singer couldn’t keep herself from laughing.
“There are points he has made that may not have been so horrible if his approach wasn’t so childish,” she said. “But in terms of entertainment — I think he’s hilarious. I wish they could just film him running for president. That’s the ultimate reality show.”
Minaj also opened up about how she felt when she saw the president visiting Federal prisons during a recent airing of a Vice documentary.
“I thought it was so important when he went to prisons and spoke to people who got 20 and 30 and 40 and 50 years for drugs. There are women who are raped, people who are killed and [offenders] don’t even serve 20 years. I was blown away, watching the footage of him speaking to the prisoners. They never felt like anyone in the White House cared about them. I loved that he made them people again. Because we all make mistakes. I think about how many men may have made a mistake to feed their families and then had to pay for it forever,” Minaj stated.
And she also compared the present prison situation to slavery.
“What it has become is not a war on drugs. It has become slavery. Or something crazier. When I see how many people are in jail, I feel like, “Wait a minute. Our government is aware of these statistics and thinks it’s OK?” The sentences are inhumane. I love the president for trying to be a voice for people who no other person has ever tried to be a voice for,” she continued.
And for those who care, no, she’s not engaged to Meek Mill.