Troye Sivan has weighed in on Eminem’s use of an anti-gay slur on his new album Kamikaze.
Since the surprise release of his 10th studio album Kamikaze last month, the American rapper has faced backlash from critics and the LGBTQ community for a song called The Fall, which features the lyric: “I see why you called yourself a faggot, bitch.”
The diss was directed at Tyler the Creator, who made references to kissing other men on his album Flower Boy, and opened up about having a boyfriend when he was 15 years old in an interview with Know Wave’s Koopz Tunes.
Speaking to Variety at the Variety and Women in Film Emmy nominees party on Saturday night, openly gay singer-songwriter Troye was asked about his thoughts on Eminem and other straight-identifying artists using the word faggot in their music.
“I don’t think there’s ever really a reason,” he said. “I just feel like some words are not meant for everyone, or for anyone. It’s not that hard to respect that, so I just hope that people do.”
When asked whether Eminem could be forgiven, considering his history of anti-gay remarks, Troye continued: “I would like to believe that people can grow and change. I think that repeated behaviour is something that should be taken really seriously.
“I would love to believe that if the person showed enough genuine remorse and understanding of how they’ve hurt people and actively made strides to correct that – I would like to believe I can be fine with that person.”
Eminem has since expressed regret for using the homophobic slur in an interview with Sway, saying: “I think the word that I called him on that song was one of the things where I felt like this might be too far.
“In my quest to hurt him, I realise that I was hurting a lot of other people by saying it. I wasn’t in the right mind frame. I was angry.”
Eminem has been slammed in the past for his use of homophobic lyrics. In 2013, he defended his use of the word ‘faggot’ on his album The Marshall Mathers LP 2, claiming to have “no issue” with gay people.
He said: “Not saying it’s wrong or it’s right, but at this point in my career – man, I say so much shit that’s tongue-in-cheek. I poke fun at other people, myself.
“But the real me sitting here right now talking to you has no issues with gay, straight, transgender, at all. I’m glad we live in a time where it’s really starting to feel like people can live their lives and express themselves.
“And I don’t know how else to say this, I still look at myself the same way that I did when I was battling and broke.”