It’s not a new thing for musicians to throw shade at other musicians by writing a song – in fact, the majority of music today is riddled with personal jabs. Drake is no stranger to this. He has a history of producing diss tracks, but in his recent release Two Birds, One Stone, Drake chose to attack something different: mental illness.
The song, aimed at Kid Cudi, includes the lyrics, “You were the man on the moon/Now you just go through your phases…You stay xanned and perked up/So when reality set in you don’t gotta face it.”
I do not follow either of them on Twitter, but several outcries in response to Drake’s song popped up on my timeline, so I looked into it. In October, Cudi opened up about his struggle with depression and suicidal thoughts before checking himself into rehab.
To be fair, Cudi threw shade first, so Drake had every right to clap back – but he decided to retaliate by brushing off the severity of Cudi’s mental health and mocking the mental health prescription drug Xanax. Drake exploited Cudi’s personal mental health issues, and for what? To get a few more dollars in his pocket? It’s one thing to defend yourself, but it’s another completely inappropriate thing to make fun of someone’s mental health.
Mental health already has a bad enough reputation as it is. People with mental illnesses are perceived as weak, abnormal or flawed, and many won’t get the help they need because they are too afraid to speak up. They don’t want to be misunderstood, embarrassed, or laughed at by people who don’t understand what they are going through. Drake went too far this time – not just because he attacked Cudi’s mental illness, but because he also subsequently attacked the mental illnesses of those around the world.
Ten out of every 100 people have depression, which increases the risk of suicide by 20 times, and 15% of people with depression commit suicide – these statistics are real, and depression is a very real illness. Just because you don’t understand it doesn’t make it any less real for the person who has to live with it.
So, Drake – you went too far this time, my guy.