Popular hip-hop artist Lecrae, who continues to top the charts and win awards, said after speaking out about the social unrest going on in America and battling depression, he realized something needed to change.
Since the killings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling by police officers, Lecrae openly became an advocate for racial reconciliation. But despite his efforts, the Texas native was greatly misunderstood for his position, even by fellow Christians, and in the newest issue of Relevant magazine he explains how the whole experience affected him.
"I think as a Christian, people expect you to be desensitized, and that's just not reality. We're not a bunch of sanitized people; we're people with issues and struggles, people with addictions. You can't talk about those types of issues because they're extremely taboo," he said.
"Beyonce creates a whole album about the pain of an affair, be it real or not, and there were many women across the world who related to that. Why aren't we writing those songs? Why aren't we telling those stories?" he added. "Why can't I talk about what it's like to be a black man in America? Because people say, 'Oh, no! That's too black.'"
The rapper described that if people suffocate his "blackness" then that is "supremacy." He explained that America's history tends to see pro-blackness as anti-white and speaking out against police brutality as anti-police.
Lecrae also talked to the magazine about his new album, which is his first since Reach partnered with mainstream label Columbia Records. The first single off of the album featuring Tori Kelly, became a top 10 mainstream hip-hop chart hit.
"So much has to go on to get you to where you're very comfortable in your own skin," he explained, sharing that he's OK now with just being who he is.
When asked where he is now after everything he's been through, Lecrae maintained that he's on the other side of it and "totally liberated."
"I'm full of great joy, great liberation. I'm in a very comfortable place, and some of that comes from the shackles of not having to be what people want you to be," he sustained.
Lecrae first talked about being overwhelmed with the unlawful killing of black lives in an open letter posted on Huffington Post, and talked about seeing "so much fakeness" in his brothers and sisters in Christ as he traveled on tour.
"I can't even read comments on social media anymore. All the slander is too much for any one person to digest. They don't get me," he penned.
The Anomaly emcee went on to clarify his stance on police and white people despite what his critics might think. He shared that his mother and others in his family work in law enforcement.
"Just as I don't hate cops, I'm not mad at white people. But I am disturbed at the supremacy and disparities that still exist. And what's ironic is that I'm so bothered because JESUS actually challenges me to not only care for the souls of all humanity, but to feed the hungry, aid the sick, regard the stranger, visit the prisoner, and love my neighbor in tangible ways," he stated.
To view Lecrae's full open letter, read here.