Earlier this week, Lil Nas X finally released his much-teased single “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)”, alongside a riotous video that combines unabashed sexuality and biblical imagery. If you wanted to see Lil Nas X make out with the serpent from the Garden of Eden then slide down a pole to Hell to give Satan a lapdance, then you’re in luck.
However, the video has also predictably received some less enthusiastic responses, namely from conservative and right-wing commentators. Since the song’s release, Lil Nas X has taken to social media to respond to some of that criticism.
“There is a mass shooting every week that our government does nothing to stop,” the rapper writes in one tweet. “Me sliding down a CGI pole isn’t what’s destroying society.”
Elsewhere, he responds to a Twitter user’s implication that he’s part of a “system” that’s “targeting kids”, which was shared alongside a video of him performing “Old Town Road” at a school.
“There was no system involved,” Lil Nas X writes. “I made the decision to create the music video. I am an adult. I am not gonna spend my entire career trying to cater to your children. That is your job.”
Addressing the criticism more generally in a March 27 tweet, he adds: “I spent my entire teenage years hating myself because of the shit y’all preached would happen to me because I was gay. So I hope u are mad, stay mad, feel the same anger you teach us to have towards ourselves.”
there was no system involved. i made the decision to create the music video. i am an adult. i am not gonna spend my entire career trying to cater to your children. that is your job. https://t.co/SzjjYe2tf4
Despite — or partly thanks to — the negative response in some corners of the internet, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” debuted at number three on Spotify and currently stands at more than 20 million views on YouTube. Presumably, the track will also feature on Lil Nas X’s recently-announced debut album, Montero, which is set to arrive this summer.
Read more about the video’s Marie Antoinette-inspired looks here, and watch Lil Nas X thank fans for its success in the video below.