DaBaby has reportedly apologized for his ignorant comments during his Rolling Loud set, meeting with people who can help him understand the real weight of his words.
On Tuesday, August 31, Black leaders from nine HIV organizations across the United States announced that they held a virtual, private meeting with DaBaby to discuss HIV facts and share personal stories of living and thriving with HIV.
These leaders called for a meeting with the artist in an open letter on August 4, which is when DaBaby responded and agreed to a meeting. The organizations provide HIV education and direct services to people most impacted by HIV/AIDS, especially Black heterosexual men and women and LGBTQ communities across the southern United States, which account for the majority of new HIV cases. Last week, GLAAD also released findings from the 2021 State of HIV Stigma Study, which found only 42% of Americans know that people living with HIV cannot transmit the virus while on proper treatment.
“During our meeting, DaBaby was genuinely engaged, apologized for the inaccurate and hurtful comments he made about people living with HIV, and received our personal stories and the truth about HIV and its impact on Black and LGBTQ communities with deep respect,” GLAAD said about their meeting in a statement. “We appreciate that he openly and eagerly participated in this forum of Black people living with HIV, which provided him an opportunity to learn and to receive accurate information.”
They continued, writing, “As community leaders who understand the power of conversations as a path to education and evolution, we know that DaBaby received meaningful facts. We were also able to share personal stories about our lives as everyday people who acquired HIV. Now, we wish for him to use his platform to relay that critical information to his fanbase and encourage people to get tested and know their status.”
“During our meeting, DaBaby acknowledged that the HIV facts we presented- many of which he himself was unaware of- are what every American needs to know,” the statement continued, going on to list important facts about HIV. “HIV is preventable and when treated properly, cannot be passed on. At a time when HIV continues to disproportionately impact Black communities, celebrities and influencers of all backgrounds have the power to defeat the stigma that fuels the epidemic. We must all do our part to make the public aware of medication that can prevent HIV and to get more people tested and treated. Together we can end this epidemic. 40 years is far too long. Stigma hurts; prevention, testing, and treatment work.”
Hopefully, this meeting really did help DaBaby understand why his statements at Rolling Loud were so out of line so he can help spread a better message next time around.