Chart topping singer J Balvin offered an apology for producing a music video that depicted him “walking” black women on all fours and with leashes around their necks.
The distasteful video was doomed from the track’s conception, which features black Dominican rapper Tokischa, who is depicted as a dog in heat that is looking a male to hook up with.
While creating the music video for “Perra,” which means “b**ch” in Spanish, Balvin leaned heavily into the canine theme. Dancers and actors, many who are minorities, wore makeup that made them look dog-like, and some were put into cages.
Tokischa, a minority woman, was placed in a doghouse for her parts in the video, and even ate out of a bowl at one point. But perhaps the most disturbing element is a clip of Balvin walking two black women on leashes.
The Colombian reggaéton singer faced immense online backlash, and was even called out by his home country’s Vice President and Chancellor Marta Lucia Ramirez, who slammed Balvin for releasing music that was “openly sexist, racist, machista, and misogynistic expressions that violate the rights of women, comparing them to an animal that must be dominated and mistreated.”
His harshest critic happened to be his own mother, who publicly questioned, “Where is the Josésito that I know?” Balvin clearly couldn’t handle disappointing his mom, and responded by taking down the video and issuing an apology on his Instagram Live.
“I want to say sorry to whomever felt offended, especially to the Black community,” Balvin said. “That’s not who I am. I’m about tolerance, love, and inclusivity. I also like to support new artists, in this case Tokischa, a woman who supports her people, her community, and also empowers women.”
“As a form of respect, I removed the video eight days ago,” he continued. “But because the criticism continued, I’m here making a statement. Mom, I’m sorry too. Life gets better each day. Thank you for listening to me.”
— billboard latin (@billboardlatin) October 24, 2021