Drake refers to the controversy surrounding J. Cole's autism lyric as "a learning lesson."
Just one day after J. Cole released an apology made in regards to his “offensive” line about autism on Drake’s “Jodeci Freestyle,” the Canadian singer/rapper has followed suit with an apology of his own. Similarly to Cole, Drake used his own Website, Octobers Very Own, to express his regret for the use of the line.
In his apology, Drake went on to take “responsibility” for Cole’s lyric and referred to the situation as “a learning lesson.”
“J.Cole wrote a beautiful and moving apology to individuals and families affected by autism who were understandably hurt by a verse in ‘Jodeci Freestyle’. I share responsibility and offer my sincerest apologies for the pain this has caused. Individuals with autism have brilliant and creative minds, and their gifts should not be disparaged or discounted,” said Drake in a blog post made yesterday (July 22). “This was a learning lesson for both of us, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to try to right this wrong. J. Cole and I believe that it is the right, responsible, and respectful decision to remove the lyric from the song.”
In the particular lyric, which has gone on to garner a modest amount of criticism following the release of “Jodeci Freestyle,” J. Cole addressed his critics as he rapped, “Go check the numbers dummy, that's just me gettin' started/ I'm artistic, you niggas is autistic, retarded."
Criticism for the song reached its peak last week when the mother of an autistic son penned an open letter to both Drake and J. Cole, stating that the two artists were putting her son “in danger” by using the word “autistic” in such a “negative” manner.
“You are putting my son in danger. You see, he is getting closer and closer to middle school, and we know that kids start separating into groups and picking on other children at that time,” Flannery explained in her letter. “When you throw out the term 'autistic' in such a negative way, you are planting a seed in children’s minds that people with autism are less; less intelligent, less important, less than human.”
J. Cole’s autism lyric has since been removed from “Jodeci Freestyle.”