In a new interview with the New York Times Magazine, Nicki Minaj addressed her decision to call out Miley Cyrus onstage at the VMAs last month, when she famously snapped: “And now back to this b*tch that had a lot to say about me the other day in the press—Miley, what’s good?”
Here’s how Minaj explained the moment:
“The fact that you feel upset about me speaking on something that affects black women makes me feel like you have some big balls. You’re in videos with black men, and you’re bringing out black women on your stages, but you don’t want to know how black women feel about something that’s so important? Come on, you can’t want the good without the bad. If you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle, bond with us, dance with us, have fun with us, twerk with us, rap with us, then you should also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we feel is unfair to us. You shouldn’t not want to know that.”
When Minaj’s “Anaconda” failed to be nominated for video of the year back in July, Minaj shared her frustrations on Twitter, writing that MTV “celebrates women with very slim bodies” while sidelining the achievements of women of color, and that "black women influence pop culture so much but are rarely rewarded for it.” Taylor Swift took the remarks to be about her, starting a mini-Twitter feud that soon blew over (culminating in an awesome Swift-Minaj duet onstage at the VMAs).
But a few days before the awards ceremony, Cyrus went and added fuel to the fire, calling out Minaj for being "not very polite” in the way she addressed the issue. As she told the New York Times: "If you want to make it about race, there’s a way you could do that. But don’t make it just about yourself."