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Jay-Z Defends ‘Anti-Semitic’ Lyrics: ‘Context Is Everything’

(JTA) — Jay-Z defended his decision to include a lyric in a song on his latest album that has been called anti-Semitic, saying he exaggerated images of black people in the same song.

The rapper was discussing his song “The Story of O.J,” which appears on his “4:44” album, during an interview with the Rap Radar podcast last week.

The song lyric says: “You wanna know what’s more important than throwin’ away money at a strip club? Credit / You ever wonder why Jewish people own all the property in America? This is how they did it.”

Following the release of the album, the Anti-Defamation League expressed concern about the lyric, but emphasized it did not believe Jay-Z intended to promote anti-Semitism.

In his podcast interview with hosts Elliott Wilson and Brian “B. Dot” Miller, the rapper said of the accusations: “If even you, as the Jewish community, if you don’t have a problem with the exaggerations of the guy eating watermelon and all the things that was happening, if you don’t have a problem with that, and that’s the only line you pick out, then you are being a hypocrite.

“Of course I know Jewish people don’t own all the property in America. I mean, I own things! So I know that they don’t own all of the property in America. It was an exaggeration.”

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Jay-Z Defends ‘Anti-Semitic’ Lyrics: ‘Context Is Everything’

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