It’s easy to forget that Chief Keef is just 17 years old — he doesn’t look it, and the rap star is far more successful than your average teenager. But his recent Twitter antics are an unpleasant reminder of just how young he really is.
It all started when pop singer Katy Perry heard Keef’s song “I Hate Being Sober.” Katy was not a fan of the song and said so, as is her right as an American citizen, thanks to the First Amendment. “Just heard a new song on the radio called ‘I Hate Being Sober,’ she tweeted. ‘I have serious doubt for the world.”
When I first heard of the little squabble between the two, I shook my head and said “Ain’t that a shame.” His response was over-the-top and completely immature. You’d hope that someone would be better at controlling their anger, but kids have to grow into being able to do that. Keef clearly isn’t there yet. Further, the fact that the tweets have not yet been deleted shows a lack of competency in his management team, and that his account is still active is a failure of the Twitter police (threatening bodily harm is a violation of Twitter’s terms of service).
As disappointed as I am with all of the above, I’m even more frustrated with Katy Perry’s response. Perry paid Keef a lot of respect that he did not deserve. He behaved like a child and should have been addressed as such: “No, you don’t get to talk to me that way. You’re being very disrespectful and I don’t deserve it. I’m sorry that you’re angry, but you need to find a mature way to deal with strong emotions. It’s not okay to resort to violence because you don’t get your way. You’re behaving very unprofessionally right now.” These are things that someone should have told Chief Keef — his handlers clearly aren’t doing it.
The tweets between the two were retweeted over 15,000 times, which means that their fans, many of whom are likely young and impressionable, witnessed the exchange. There is a dangerous lesson to be learned there, both by Keef and his young fans: It’s okay for a man to threaten to assault a woman if she says or something you don’t like. Not only is it okay, but it will put her in her place.
I applaud Perry for taking the high road and not jumping into the pit to sling mud with Keef. But she could have done that in the course of standing up for herself. I personally would have taken the issue to his parole officer and let the law deal with it. What this teenage rapper needs to learn is that there are consequences to your actions, online and off.