Ras Kass Responds To Crocodile Hunter's Manager

 Rapper Ras Kass has responded to criticism surrounding a line on his recently released diss track to rival The Game, in which he references the death of Steve "The Crocodile Hunter" Irwin.

Irwin's manager John Stainton lashed out at the rapper yesterday (Oct. 23) in the Sydney Morning Herald, because of a line in the 6-minute battle rap titled "Gayme Over" in which Ras Kass raps: "You're the waste of LA/get blast up in LA/face down, ass up in LA/you the Crocodile Hunter, I am the stingray"

"I just find it a bit sad that people have to stoop to that," Stainton told the Sydney Morning Herald. "It is disappointing. I can't understand the point of it. There are other references they can make that will put the point across."

Irwin was fatally wounded on Sept. 4, while diving near Australia's Great Barrier Reef. A barb from a stingray pierced his chest as he was filming a segment for his eight-year-old daughter's new TV series.

Ras Kass responded to Stainton's criticism by writing an open letter to the Sydney Morning Herald to defend his choice of words.

"Every person should be treated with an equal brush stroke, or no one should, and everything must be considered in context," Ras said in the open letter. "I am a hip hop artist. Hip-hop is like any other art form; nothing is sacred, nothing is off limits. As such, I have used historical events and current events as metaphors to express a greater perspective to certain ideas and points. At other times, I myself, have been referenced- be it in a positive or negative light. That is part of the creative process and the nature of what rap music is. I in no way have, or have had any ill will towards the late Steve Irwin."

Ras Kass said the line was one of many insults directed at his rival The Game. He explained that he used Irwin's death as a metaphor-- but the usage didn't make a positive or negative statement about Irwin or his death.

The Watts-bred rapper also said the line was being blown out of proportion in comparison to some of the other jabs he takes at Game during their latest round of battling, since a physical confrontation in an L.A. nightclub in September sparked the feud.

"Mr. Stainton doesn't seem to be the least bit concerned with other references that one could misconstrue as homophobic or misogynistic, let alone is he concerned with the potential violence in hip hop or black-on-black violence," Ras Kass said. "He only seems to be bothered by one line. I am just saying that consistency would be nice. If you aren't from the hip hop culture and are not familiar with it then you are not qualified to judge it. Whether American or Australian, every human life is valuable; otherwise it makes it appear that Mr. Stainton thinks that only one man's is."

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