NEW YORK, Feb. 15 (UPI) — Singer Nicki Minaj has apologized for using an image of U.S. civil rights-era icon Malcolm X to promote her new single, “Lookin expletives.”
Minaj used the iconic photograph of Malcolm X holding an M1 Carbine rifle published Ebony magazine in 1964 for the online promotion of her new single, the New York Daily News reported.
The use of the image stirred up controversy, prompting the rapper to apologize Thursday for posting the artwork.
“That was never the official artwork nor is this an official single,” Minaj said in a statement. “I apologize to the Malcolm X estate.”
Ilyasah Shabazz, one of Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz’s six children, told the Daily News Friday she didn’t find it appropriate for Minaj to use her father’s image to promote her new song.
“Ms. Minaj’s artwork for her single does not depict the truth of Malcolm X’s legacy, is completely disrespectful, and in no way is endorsed by my family,” Shabazz said. “It is our family’s hope that the true legacy and context of Malcolm X’s life continues to be shared with people from all walks of life in a positive manner that helps promote the goals and ideals for which Malcolm X so passionately advocated.”