Rapper Lupe Fiasco lived down to his name at a recent corporate-sponsored inauguration party in Washington D.C. when he was thrown off the stage by the hosts for going on a tirade against President Obama, Rush Limbaugh, and Glenn Beck, audience members said.
During one of his “songs” the rapper informed the audience that he didn’t vote for President Obama and told them why, saying, “…and these same people supposedly telling us the truth. Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist, Gaza strip was getting bombed. Obama didn’t say sh*t. That’s why I ain’t vote for him, next one either. I’m part of the problem, my problem is I’m peaceful.”
It wasn’t long before black-suited security guards mounted the stage and swept the rapper off, shutting down the concert.
Josh Rogin, a writer for Foreign Policy magazine, was in the audience and tweeted as the incident played out. In one Tweet, Rogin reported, “Lupe refused to move to the next song so a team of security guards came on stage and told him to go.”
The event was sponsored by StartUp RockOn, a company that helps start up companies grow. The sponsor denies that Rapper Fiasco was shut down because he attacked Obama onstage. After the event, StartUp RockOn released a statement to explain its position.
StartUp RockOn is all about startups helping startups. At Sunday night’s Inauguration Celebration at the Hamilton Live, organizers set out to honor innovative visionaries with grants, accolades and a party worthy of the success we achieved at the RNC and DNC this summer.
Lupe Fiasco performed at this private event, and as you may have read, he left the stage earlier than we had planned. But Lupe Fiasco was not “kicked off stage” for an “anti-Obama rant.” We are staunch supporters of free speech, and free political speech. This was not about his opinions. Instead, after a bizarrely repetitive, jarring performance that left the crowd vocally dissatisfied, organizers decided to move on to the next act. Lupe Fiasco repeated the one song for more than 40 minutes.
The party continued as planned, and we celebrated the announcement of CodeNow’s winning the Grant Challenge. CodeNow is a non-profit startup based in Washington DC that teaches “underrepresented high school students basic skills in computer programming.”