Illustration by Clara Hollowgrass
Trigger Warning: Graphic Content Regarding Domestic Abuse
In the summer of 2018, rapper XXXTentacion – referred to as X by many – was shot dead in Miami, Florida. In 2017, X’s album 17 debuted at No. 2 on the top 200 charts. In 2016, X beat his pregnant girlfriend. Two days ago, he admitted to the abuse over video.
The police report, submitted after the 2016 abuse, states that the “Victim’s eyes [were] punched to where both eyes became shut and victim could not see.” The medical report is a total of 51 pages detailing the abuse Katherine Rundle experienced at the hands of X. In her two and a half hour questioning, Rundle discussed the numerous accounts of horrendous abuse she experienced by her boyfriend. Despite an extensive medical report, she was not believed. People claimed she was only saying all this for fame. The rapper pleaded innocent in his first trial concerning the beating of his ex-girlfriend, and was awaiting further trial when he was killed.
You may remember when X died, many people were calling out his mourning fans, pointing out the violence X exhibited, and sited that abusers should not be glorified. On top of abusing Rundle, X has also been accused of violently attacking a myriad of other people.
Despite physical evidence of the abuse and instances of witness tampering on X’s part, X had maintained his status of innocence in the court and on Twitter. When he was killed, many thought that was the end of the trial; there was going to be no way to prove X was guilty of anything. That is, until a video surfaced on October 27, 2018. In a recent video obtained by Pitchfork, X can be heard confessing to the abuse of his ex-girlfriend, as well as to the stabbing of reportedly nine different people.
In the video, X says “She’s seen this sh*t, She know… I put my source of happiness in another person, which was a mistake initially, right? But she fell through on every occasion until now. Until I started f*cking her up bruh. I started f*cking her up because she made one mistake. And from there, the whole cycle went down. Now she’s scared. That girl is scared for her life. Which I understand.”
XXXTentacion is admitting to abusing his girlfriend, not once, but multiple times. “Starting” implies there was a beginning to a string of violent crimes, no one says “starting” if you only did something once. Something notable is that X is admitting to making his romantic partner fear for her life. This fear, he goes on to describe, stems from the fact that his girlfriend saw him feel no remorse after stabbing his ex-manager and eight other people in several separate attacks. He says that his girlfriend knows what he is capable of.
To all his fans who screamed “RIP X,” who attacked people for calling him out, and maintained that he was innocent, or that it was a one time mistake, I ask them to look at the patterns of abuse. According to Rundles testimony, X presented her with a “barbecue pitchfork” and a “barbecue cleaner,” and told Rundle to choose one, which he was going to put inside of her vagina. Rundle passed out as he was dragging them across her thighs, and he did not end up penetrating her with either.
Even though this information was widely spread, many people still call themselves fans, and don’t see his actions as reprehensible.
However, some fans have begun to realize X may not be the tragic hero he made himself out to be. This self growth is incredibly important. It is integral to prosperity of pop culture to say “times up” and to shut down abusers, and each and every person can take part in this. Delete abuser’s music from your libraries, stop listening to them. Listen and believe survivors.