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Action Bronson, once barred from Dundas Square, 'sorry' for 'Consensual Rape' lyrics

A controversial rapper and VICELAND television host who was once barred from playing a free concert at Dundas Square in Toronto is apologizing for upsetting people with his misogynistic lyrics.

Action Bronson was slated to play at George Washington University’s Spring Fling this weekend, but he was removed from the bill after a slew of complaints.

“(We have) decided to remove Action Bronson from Saturday’s setlist,” the university said in a Facebook statement. “We apologize to the GW community for causing distress over the past few days and for attempting to bring an artist who is not consistent with our values of diversity and inclusion.”

Bronson released his own statement (full statement below), distancing himself from his most controversial song “Consensual Rape,” and making it clear that one’s art shouldn’t necessarily reflect the artist.

“I can’t continue to walk around with the thought that people are thinking these things about me that are far from who I really am,” he said. “Five years ago in 2011, I wrote a song called “Consensual Rape” that admittedly contains lyrics and a general sentiment of violence towards woman (sic) which I never meant to represent who I am but rather to depict a story.”

“I approach my music as other types of artists approach their work, and I don’t always intend the stories that I tell, the characters that I play in them or the lyrics I lay down to be taken literally.”

“…the song in question has caused people discomfort and pain and I’m sincerely sorry about it.”

At last year’s North by Northeast (NXNE) in Toronto, Bronson was scheduled to headline a show at Yonge-Dundas Square, but organizers pulled him from the event, citing his controversial lyrics.

“A significant number of Torontonians have indicated their desire to have Action Bronson not perform at the Square,” NXNE said at the time. “As annual guests in this space we feel we must accede to the strong wishes of the community and honour their input.”