Jimmie Allen Says Some Critics of Morgan Wallen Exploiting Incident

Broken Bow artist Jimmie Allen is continuing to be one of the few artists in mainstream country who is willing to speak out and stick up for Morgan Wallen in the aftermath of Wallen getting caught on camera saying the N-word on February 2nd.

Though Allan is quick to point out what Morgan did and said was wrong and he should face consequences, he is also one of the few people saying he also deserves forgiveness, and trying to give context to the incident as opposed to attempting to dramaticize it, incite people, make it about himself, or use it to paint the entirety of country music as racist.

Speaking to Bobby Bones on his Bobbycast podcast on March 12th, Jimmie Allan said what many are others are thinking about the Morgan Wallen situation as the parade of think pieces, criticism, and social media larping about the incident continues unabated, and likely continues to fuel a pro-Morgan Wallen backlash that has put Morgan’s current album Dangerous at the top of the all genre album charts for now a 9th week—a record for a country release.

When Jimmie Allen was asked by Bobby Bones if he was offended by Morgan Wallen’s words, he responded, “No. The reason why—and this is from me being black, talking to a bunch of black people—[is] first of all, the way he said it. He didn’t use the -er. So that’s why a lot of black people, we laughed at it. It was like, ‘Oh ok, well he said it right.’

While many outlets are misreporting that Wallen did say the N-word with the harder “-er” ending, many are also failing to mention that he did not use it it anger towards a black individual, but in jest to a white friend. The specific phrase he used is also the title to numerous hip-hop songs, and a lyric from many more.

True, you shouldn’t say it,” Jimmie Allan continues. “But at the same time, just because I don’t agree with what he said doesn’t mean I should banish him.”

What has offended Jimmie Allen is the white people who’ve chosen to use the incident to act offended, or make it about themselves to bolster their social media clout, and/or to further an agenda less tied to racism, and more tied to exploiting the incident to gain ground in the culture war.

“That’s really kind of rubbed me the wrong way a lot of times, where I saw white people tweeting ‘I’m so offended. I can’t believe that you would do this. I’m so hurt.’ You’re not hurt … Now if people would have said ‘I don’t agree with this. He shouldn’t have used that. It’s a wrong word to use,’ that’s one thing. But when people start to use words like ‘offended’ … my grandfather told me at a young age when someone says something to someone else not directed at you that doesn’t affect you, the only way you can become offended is if you are so self-absorbed and you make something about you that’s not about you.”

It’s probably not fair to characterize that some of the white people that saw the Morgan Wallen video were not truly offended, if not for themselves, then for the black community. But undoubtedly, some inside and outside the country music community—including some media members and performers—have used the Morgan Wallen incident to opportunistically draw attention and make it about themselves.

The extra stuff… I feel like people just want to be seen,” says Jimmie Allen. “I feel like sometimes people just want to be in the spotlight, you know what I mean? With the extra hurt. A lot of times it’s just nonsense to where people want to look cool on social media.

Allen also spoke specifically about the drama surrounding Blackout Tuesday on June 2nd of 2020, and how some artists were criticized for not posting black squares on social media, while others were praised for it, including the controversial “accountability” spreadsheet that logged artists that did and did not participate, including artists who clearly support the black community such as Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson, but didn’t post a black square.

“I know people that didn’t post the black square, whatever, that do stuff for black communities all the time and I know a lot of people who just posted it cause they don’t want to look racist but they’re doing nothing. Racism isn’t about what you post on your social media for the world to see, it’s about who you actually are, what you’re actually doing.”

Jimmie Allen received criticism from many in the days after the initial incident with Morgan Wallen after he pointed out it was more white people being offended than black people, and saying that Morgan Wallen deserved forgiveness.

“Forgiveness is more powerful than abandonment. Our job as humans is to help each other be the best version of themselves,” Allen said in a tweet. “It’s not about what is easiest….it’s about what is right. In order to receive forgiveness, we must give forgiveness.”

Jimmie Allen also revealed in the interview with Bobby Bones that in the aftermath of the N-word incident, he talked to Morgan Wallen every day, including telling him why what he did was wrong. Morgan Wallen has apologized, and asked his fans to not defend his actions, and has been out of the public eye since it happened.

READ: Morgan Wallen Backlash Not Just Ineffective, It’s Counter-Productive

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