Oh, you’re perfect. I forgot.

Yes, I will be writing about The Joe Budden Podcast, The Read, and A$AP Rocky. No, I will not be merely scratching the surface in an effort to garner traffic through clickbait. No, I will not be defending Joe Budden, whom I will happily go on record saying I am a fan of. That does mean not I’m blind to his flaws. He’s human, as am I.

I also will not immediately jump on the offensive against Crissle and The Read. I will openly say that I am not a fan of the podcast, but not with any negativity. I simply haven’t tuned into the content. I respect your choice to not read any further due to that, but trust that this isn’t an analysis of the show itself.

What I’ve learned, or re-learned, in the last few days is that people of the Twitterverse expect others to be perfect while acknowledging their own humanity and imperfections. The mistakes of others are permanent tattoos, while ours should be the ones you apply with water that come off in the next few days. Even further, people will accept indecent actions from those that they like for the simple fact…they like them and they stand with them. The people they hate? There’s no chance in hell any fact they stated will be heard with a fair ear. I wonder if the conversation would be different if it were not a man vs. a woman but I’m not here to belabor the inherent tension between genders/sexes/what people identify as.

A$AP Rocky’s 2015 comments regarding Ferguson were and are gross. Nothing will change that, and clearly, nothing will erase them from memory. People are good at digging up old shit. The big thing for me here is the comments were made in 2015. Four years ago. Yes, he is a Black man who should care about what happens to his fellow Black men. Being a public figure with a platform and a strong cult following, he could very well have contributed heavily to the Black Lives Matter movement.

He didn’t. As saddening as it is, the milk has spilled and left an irremovable stain on his life — according to those who don’t want to see him any other way. Do we account for the fact these rappers making money and traveling all over the world just may not care because it doesn’t personally affect them? Again, not a justification or giving him a pass, but just reality. People often only care about things when they are negatively impacted by them directly.

Is everyone not entitled to an opinion? Is everyone not given the opportunity to change their opinion upon gaining more knowledge? Surely, the circumstances in Sweden being quite similar to the numerous deaths by the hands of police in moments of self-defense (often not smh) might have him rethinking things. We don’t know, but people don’t care to know because it isn’t them on the stand.

Do people not grow? Do people not change? Do people not learn, mature, and look back on things they’ve done with disappointment? Have you all reading this never had that experience? This brings me to Crissle’s Tweet. Relevant? Sure. Coincidental? Absolutely. A lesson in manifestation? Without a doubt.

Poor taste? Undeniably. I’ll never understand why we wait for moments of strife in other people’s lives to bring them down further by revisiting errors they made years ago? Old Tweets coming up is the stupidest thing ever to me. What if that were her relative and someone did that to them? I can’t imagine the energy would be the same.

Why do we judge others but refuse to allow others to judge us? Joe Budden ain’t perfect, and he’s owned up to it. Not that self-awareness makes things okay, but he’s far from the type to act as if he is holier than thou. I saw people tearing him down for his defense of Rocky and his jabs thrown at The Read. Again, I’m not here for the beef. However, he said many facts. There are several real statements in that one minute, 36-second clip floating around that if anyone else had said, they would be glorified.

What did I learn from this? People love to crucify from the sidelines. People love to take strong stances in situations like these because they have nothing to lose. People will defend who they like instead of what is right. People will hold others to who they used to be, and not account for the permanent room for growth we carry with us throughout life.

When necessary, people will weaponize the painful circumstances in people’s lives to put down someone else. This pertains to Crissle bringing up how Rocky expressed no care over Ferguson, only to be in the same predicament. People will utilize that pain in a distasteful time if necessary, for the sake of defending who they like. And lastly, the big idea here — picking and choosing when to be decent human beings.

I personally would hate to miss out on a good friendship, relationship, or even conversation because I can’t see past who someone used to be, whether four or more years ago. I can’t ask for people to see and appreciate my growth if I don’t give them the opportunity to show me theirs.

I saw people bringing up the situation with Joe and his ex who lost their child. A tragic situation he opened up about and acknowledged was wrong. And in a moment where he’s addressing someone else being indecent, people resorted to indecency to counter.

I just don’t know. And I will rack my brain trying to figure people out, so I don’t. I just think we have to do better. Casting stones is never productive. Hypocrisy is disappointing. And playing favorites in the midst of controversy when one party clearly stepped out of bounds muddies the waters of morality. Revisiting a situation where the opposing party did so in the past only builds on the fire, rather than presenting constructive solutions.

Sadly, I do not see this changing for some time. But I can’t sit by and not address it. If you want to limit the issue to Joe vs. Crissle, so be it. It’s interesting the people who do so and try to make others feel bad for defending who they like, often are doing THE EXACT SAME THING in that moment.

I can’t force otherwise. It’s limiting and shortsighted, though. I understand defending your heroes but not when it compromises rationality. Because Joe has done bad things in the past, he is automatically rid of any opportunity to be right? Hm.

Why are we as a people all about uplift then so quick to turn our backs on one another? It’s true, all skinfolk ain’t kinfolk. Rocky’s 2015 comments would make him seem as such. Crissle’s do the same, and lean more toward cancellation than rehabilitation. Sometimes it’s good to step off of your moral high ground to get a closer look at those you place beneath you. The same pedestal you place yourself on, you can easily fall off. Badly.

But oh, my apologies. I forgot we are all perfect.

Writer, editor, curator, podcast host, passionate overthinker of all things music and wrestling. Content — linktr.ee/armonsadler. Hope you enjoy!

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