R&B crooner Tank is still defending himself against homophobic attacks after he ignited a Twitter storm over his oral sex comments.
It all started when Tank went on Angela Yee‘s podcast “Lip Service”. Tank and the podcasters discussed a variety of things, including Tank’s first marriage, how he pleases his current wife and relationships in general. However, the moment that caused the biggest reaction was when the topic of men giving oral sex to other men came up. Tank gave an example, saying:
“He sucked a di** once, and then he’s like, ‘I’m not sure if I liked it or not. Let me try it again.’ And then he says, ‘You know what, it’s not for me. Don’t like the taste,’ see what I’m saying?” He concluded, “It doesn’t mean he’s gay, it means he sucked di** twice.”
The clip sparked major debate on Twitter and it particularly brought out the homophobic folks with people accusing Tank of being gay. Some people even threw the f-bomb at him. “The ni**a tank is a f*g no if ands or buts about it,” one user wrote.
Some people weren’t necessarily as egregious, but still questioned how a man could perform oral sex with another man and not be considered gay. Another Twitter user wrote, “Tank is gay. No I don’t have anything against gays but there’s just no way a straight man is gonna go suck some penis to see if he like it, sir what?”
Tank initially addressed all the backlash in an Instagram video saying:
“I said what I said, ya’ll so godd*mn homophobic. You got to watch the whole clip. In any event, homophobia is real, let me just tell you that. It’s just as real as racism, classism, all these things, and just as damaging. And it plagues our community the worst. This can’t be used as a negative. You can’t use a human being’s existence as a negative. We’re going through enough sh**.”
Granted, homophobia isn’t necessarily worse in the Black community than in any other community, considering we still have white people aiming homophobic statements at other white people, like presidential nominee Pete Buttigieg. Not to mention, Black gay men can go to other countries that aren’t predominantly Black and still face homophobic violence.
However, in this instance, many of the attacks aimed at Tank have been from other Black people. Thus, the topic of homophobia and what’s considered gay is still extremely important to discuss within the Black community.
Tank went on The Breakfast Club on Friday and explained further, “There’s an exploration process. And this speaks to the double standard. Women are allowed to explore and play and do all of these things and they don’t get boxed into a thing. And I think for men, there’s a scary thing as it pertains to being gay.”
Charlagmagne tha God then argued:
“I don’t think that people were necessarily tripping off the fact of being gay. It’s just the fact that your whole life you’ve been taught same sex relationships mean that you’re gay. So you said somebody did it twice, which said they’re not gay. So that’s really just defying everything people have learned through our life.”
Tank responded, “It does throw you off, right? But it still speaks to an act versus an existence. And maybe that was just too much for the Internet to break down at one time.”
Tank does have a point about sexual exploration versus firmly aligning yourself to a sexual identity. On top of this, they didn’t even get to the other sexual identities on the LGBTQ+ spectrum, such as bisexuality, pansexuality or other forms of queerness. Many of the people who align themselves with these identities might engage in same sex relationships but not identify as gay.
You can check out the full interview with Tank and The Breakfast Club below where they unpack the topic even more. Also, Tank has a new album out called “Elevation”, just in case that got lost in all the hoopla.