During the summer of 1996, a caller to shock jock Howard Stern’s radio show said on the air that he’d heard Lauryn tell MTV that she’d rather see her child starve than have a white kid buy her album. MTV would announce later that the allegation wasn’t true, but by that time it was too late. The ugly, false rumor had already been set in motion.
“From this one broadcast, all of a sudden people who appreciated my music thought that there was something wrong with who I was and what I represented,” says Lauryn. Instead of letting a publicist act on her behalf, Lauryn, furious and very hurt, called a radio station herself to deny the charge. “I said, ‘How can I possibly be a racist? My music is universal music. And I believe in God. If I believe in God, then I have to love all of God’s creations. There can be no segregation.‘”
“Let me clarify this right now,” Lauryn responds forcefully. “I am not a racist. I love people who love God. I love good people. If you’re a good person with a good heart, you’re cool with me. And I hope I’m cool with you. There’s nothing racist about anything in my heart.”
Lauryn insists she wants people to understand that her goal to improve the self-love of young African-American women should never be confused with advocating racial supremacy. “There are a lot of young black girls who I meet in my travels who don’t have a lot of self-esteem,” she explains. “So if I communicate to them that they’re beautiful, no white person should find fault in that. It doesn’t mean that young white girls aren’t beautiful, because they are just as beautiful.”
source: excerpts from ‘Teen People’ magazine (issue 04/99)