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Can We Discuss That Nicki Minaj New York Times Article?

My social feed has been filled all day with conversation about The New York Time's article "The Passion of Nicki Minaj." The conversation has mainly been about the last quote we get from Nicki where she goes off on reporter, Vanessa Grigoriadis. That is the best part of this article, but we'll get to that later. I want to actually discuss this article. 

Let me first start off by saying that I have a degree in public relations with a strong foundation in journalism. This doesn't mean I know everything, but I do know some. Obviously, I'm no New York Times writer, but I have questions. Let's break this down. 

Pop music is dominated almost exclusively by the female star — Beyoncé, Rihanna, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga and, as always, Madonna.

I just want to state that this should have Madonna in the line up and be "and of course, Beyonce." I understand that Madonna is considered a legend. But Beyonce's the bigger one so....

‘‘I’m not always confident. Just tired. Black women influence pop culture so much but are rarely rewarded for it.’’ (For the record, Beyoncé was nominated for the award in question, for a video in which she dances around in underwear and, inexplicably, a sweatshirt with the word ‘‘KALE.’’)

Stop the car. Get out of it. Are you under a tree? Because this is shade. Reading this, I knew it was a warning sign of what was to come. While I do not 100% agree with Nicki (another post for another day), it seems like a personal opinion here is not needed, especially if you're trying to let your audience get to know who your subject is without bias. 

‘‘I saw [Cyrus] just looking at me, with her face screwed up, and I thought, What the!’’

Question one. Why are these the first words we see from Nicki? The first words we get are angry words. Some might argue that "Miley, what's good" is the most timely thing that's happened in the news which is why Grigoriadis may have started with that. But I look at Drake's interview with The Fader, and the first words we see from Drake deal with driving. They didn't start off with his quote about his Meek Mill beef. So why did we do it with Nicki Minaj? It plays into the angry black woman role, which sets the tone for this article. 

A month later, the episode was still bothering Minaj.

Is it?! Or was Nicki asked a questioned that she answered? This is question number number two. 

‘‘The fact that you feel upset about me speaking on something that affects black women makes me feel like you have some big balls. You’re in videos with black men, and you’re bringing out black women on your stages, but you don’t want to know how black women feel about something that’s so important? Come on, you can’t want the good without the bad. If you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle, bond with us, dance with us, have fun with us, twerk with us, rap with us, then you should also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we feel is unfair to us. You shouldn’t not want to know that.’’

I'm sorry. I have to give out a YAS NICKI here because that was nothing but truth. You hear me? 

In the last 24 hours, she had poured herself into a nude mesh Alexander Wang dress that the most party-hearty 19-year-old would choose only as a beach cover-up

Question three. Why did she feel the need to say that? I'm struggling to find why that was important here. Pictures of the outfit accompanied this article. Nicki Minaj is in the music business. What's in this season is wearing clothing that covers up your sensitive areas and leaves more to the imagination. This is nothing new, so again I ask, why was this statement necessary? 

But female empowerment is a trend, and the word has been reclaimed — by Minaj, in many a track; by Rihanna, in ‘‘Bitch Better Have My Money’’

Female empowerment is a...trend? Sigh. Yes, okay. I guess maybe in a few months we'll be done with empowerment and ready to go back to being self-hating, men-glorifying, "respectable" women. 

Also, Rihanna was calling someone else a bitch in BBHMM, so this doesn't fit what you're saying but okay. 

and triumphantly by Madonna, in her recent track ‘‘Bitch, I’m Madonna.

Clearly Madonna is her Queen. This is the second time we've brought up Madonna. Triumphantly? Girl. 

But when I asked why she hadn’t called on them much on her last album, she gave me a vague answer about how they were only ‘‘funny’’ and were still around somewhere. Early in her career, she also adopted Lady Gaga’s method of saturating the media with outrageous costumes, but now, when I asked if Gaga influenced her, she shot back, with a look of such intense disapproval my hair curled: ‘‘I don’t even want to discuss that. That’s so old to me.’’

Somebody didn't do their homework. Nicki has answered the question about the voices so many times that I know the answer. I swear this is why Beyonce doesn't do interviews anymore. Nicki Minaj and her team are huge believers in interviewing to promote an album. They literally go everywhere. How do you miss the answer to that question? And why would you also compare one current artist to another current artist? The question comes off offensive and I can see why Nicki would give you such a look. 

At some point, Minaj also sold her mixtapes out of her white BMW 323i, a car she says she scrimped and saved to buy. I’m not sure when that was, because after I asked about it twice, she told me it was a dumb question.

I literally laughed out loud here. I've watched enough interviews to know her language when she's not happy with how the interview is going or the interviewer themselves. So this rang loud and clear that she was not happy. I really wish I could see her questions. Also, I can still hear my journalism professor saying to me, never ask questions that you can look up. Why would you ask her that twice? A quick Google search showed me started selling mixtapes out of her car when she was 19

Meek attacked Drake for using a ghostwriter, and Drake struck back with what seemed like an endless series of dis tracks

There were two tracks sis. Two. There was endless embarassment, but only two tracks. 

I asked about the ethics of ‘‘Straight Outta Compton,’’ the N.W.A. biopic that does not include a reference to Dr. Dre’s history of abusing women.

......why? Why did she ask this question? 

This was not the game Minaj was here to play — interviews in the social-media era are about being adored, not interrogated.

Well, I would think anyone who thinks that this is an article about their passion and artistry would be against answering questions about domestic abuse (that has nothing to do with her) and a problem between Lil Wayne, Birdman, and Young Thug (which also has nothing to do with her). These aren't hard hitting questions involving her or the current state of music. These are questions that below to NWA, Lil Wayne, Birdman and Young Thug. 

Minaj hadn’t turned on lights, so she was in shadow. 

Nicki was so over her. 

‘‘Is there a part of you that thrives on drama, or is it no, just pain and unpleasantness—’’

GIRL. WHAT. This is the type of question for Erica Mena, Kim Richards or any other person who makes their money from gossiping and fighting women on television. I could see this question for Azealia Banks, but Nicki?! And who would answer that question non-defensively?! I'm glad that Grigoriadis recognized she was wrong, and I'm glad that Nicki checked her on it. 

This article was honestly a trainwreck from beginning to end. If you were a person who had never read or watched a Nicki Minaj interview, you would've finished this article thinking Nicki Minaj is a terrible and mean person. Luckily, I've seen and read enough Nicki interviews to know that this article was biased and the writer's questions were, for lack of better words, questionable. Nicki Minaj requires you to be on your toes and expects you to bring her great questions. When reporters don't, we get interviews like these. But hey we got a message and a read, so how mad can you really be? 

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