Mykki Blanco seems to have got himself into some hot water while headed to an artist’s residency in Portugal this week. Upon arriving at the airport, Mykki went to find a way to pay for taxi vouchers in cash, asking an officer for help who he says responded with a homophobic slur. Mykki says he responded with a “F*CK YOU”, which opened up a whole world of trouble for the rapper.
Mykki was officially was charged for insulting a police officer, which is a crime in Portugal. He was ordered to pay a six hundred euro fine. Mykki has spoken about the altercation — here’s what he had to say:
“…The altercation escalated because I waited in a long line outside the airport for a taxi and when I was told I could not use my credit card but only cash (which also is not true I later found), the taxi attendant and cop refused to help in any way. They were impatient and short with me all the while eagerly helping white tourists.
A Portuguese woman in line with me even leaned over and whispered, ‘I don’t know why they are being so strange with you, there is a place inside to buy taxi vouchers you don’t need cash’. I should have listened to the woman and went inside to find the voucher office but there is a part of my personality that really wants to see if people WILL actually be prejudiced, to see if maybe my PC west coast optimism about the world is being challenged by blatant discrimination and I was right. I asked the police officer where the voucher office was and I was told to “go away” like I was a nuisance and when I asked why he could not help but the other white tourists I was yelled at and told to “go away bicha” which is a gay slur [according to Urban Dictionary: it is an offensive slur meant to challenge a man on his sexuality], even though I had waited in the same line as everyone else.”
Mykki has also begun to receive disturbing hate messages on his social media sites. Racial, homophobic, and threatening comments, even going as far as to threaten him with hangings and lynchings at his performance there.
“More than racism or even homophobia (which was also a factor) I realized that class matters and that an upwardly mobile black man isn’t something people always want to see.”