Christian rapper Lecrae said he was caught off guard during a recorded conversation with Louie Giglio, the pastor of an Atlanta megachurch and Chic-Fil-A CEO Dan Cathy in which where Giglio said that slavery was a “blessing.”
During their talk about slavery and its lasting racist impact on the Black community, which went viral on Twitter this week, Giglio said: “We understand the curse that was slavery, white people do, and we say ‘that was bad,’ but we miss the blessing of slavery that it actually built up the framework for the world that white people live in and lived in.”
Giglio also rejected the term “white privilege,” saying instead he wanted to refer to it as “white blessing.”
Initially, Lecrae seemed to defend his silence, but he later offered a more thoughtful reply in a video posted to social media Tuesday.
“First of all, I want you to know I wasn’t OK with it. Even as I sat there, I was very uncomfortable and I was processing on, like, ‘Oh man, how do I — what do I say in light of this?'” Lecrae admitted, noting that he had feelings of “anger.”
The rapper added that he asked God to “give [him] the grace and the wisdom on how to deal with this” and later had two conversations with Giglio.
“Obviously, I wasn’t OK with it. And we can’t just be virtual signaling and just doing this because it’s the ‘in’ thing to do to talk about race on platforms,” Lecrae continued, “And I didn’t have any ulterior motives other than to help and articulate some of what’s going on in our world and in our culture.”
“I want to be clear, I’m sorry for anyone who was let down and hurt. This was good for me in many ways. It burns but it burns in a helpful way. Lamentations 3 has comforted me. I’m grateful for the love. Even the tough love,” he tweeted later.
He wrote that his fear of returning to a “dark place” kept him from clapping back on the spot.
“I have a lot of racial trauma. After spending the last few years battling racism within the evangelical church I was in a dark place. In that interview I feared going back there. I’m healing but not healed. I’m definitely protecting myself from a breakdown,” he revealed.
“Processing a lot. I think in my attempt to be diplomatic and gracious I missed an opportunity to care for the very people I came to represent. I knew I was uncomfortable but I was so excited to educate. I still have some gaps in my education,” he concluded.
For his part, Giglio also took to social media to “sincerely” apologize in a video “to every single person who is listening to me right now but most importantly, I extend that apology to my Black brothers and sisters.”
The Atlanta pastor said he’s “heartbroken about where we are as a nation” and he’s “trying to help myself continue to learn and help my White brothers and sisters understand that white privilege is real. And in trying to get my sentiment across I used that phrase “white blessing,” for which I’m deeply sorry. Horrible choice of words. Does not reflect my heart at all.”