Lil Wayne took to Twitter and Facebook to deny purposely trampling on the flag in a video for his song "God Bless Amerika."
"I didn't step on the flag on purpose! It's a scene in a video where the flag drops behind me and after it drop it's just there as I perform," he tweetedtoday. In the one-minute clip from the video which surfaced online Monday, he is seen singing and dancing in front of a large red, white and blue flag before it drops to reveal residents from his hometown Hollygrove, New Orleans. With Old Glory at his feet, Lil Wayne continues to perform, at times appearing to step on the flag.
But the 30-year-old rapper said on his Facebook page, "It was never my intention to desecrate the flag of the United States of America."
A wide shot of the footage allowed Internet viewers to see the flag at the rapper's feet, but he said that camera angle was never intended to be seen in the finished music video.
"The clip that surfaced on the Internet was a camera trick clip that revealed behind the American Flag was the Hoods of America," Lil Wayne wrote on Facebook. "In the final edit of the video you will see the flag fall to reveal whats behind it but will never see it on the ground."
After the minute-long clip surfaced, some fans were quick to express outrage: "that is extremely disrespectful! 1st dropping tha american flag on tha ground and then wayne walking all over it!!! I have now lost all respect for you wayne!" one wrote.
The song's lyrics fanned the controversy. They include the line, "My country 'tis of thee / Sweet land of kill 'em all and let 'em die," and the hook, "God bless Amerika / This so godless Amerika" Wayne explained on Facebook that the song reflects the environment that he and many others have grown up in.
"In most people eyes including my own who were raised in that environment, the Hood is the only America they know and the only America I knew growing up. I was fortunate from my God giving talents to escape the Hood and see the other beautiful places this country has to offer but most people who are born in that environment don't get that chance. That's their view of their America. That was Dwayne M Carter from Hollygrove New Orleans view of America. That's who I'm speaking for in this song."