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Rapper Tone Loc Detained At Texas Airport After Arguing With Teen, Parents About Confederate Flag Hat

“How are you going to wear that in front of a black man?” Tone Loc reportedly asked a teen wearing a hat with a Confederate flag on it.

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt
Rapper Tone Loc pictured during a January 2018 performance

Rapper Tone Loc was briefly detained at a Texas airport after reportedly getting into an argument about a hat bearing the Confederate flag.

Authorities at the Midland International Air & Space Port handcuffed the 53-year-old rapper, born Anthony Terrell Smith and known for his 1989 hit “Wild Thing,” after he and two parents, along with their teenage son, got into a heated confrontation, according to KMID, a Texas-based ABC affiliate station. One witness told the station that the interaction began when Smith, after spotting the teen wearing a Confederate flag hat in the baggage claim area, said to him, “How are you going to wear that in front of a black man?” After an exchange between the teen and Smith, the teen’s mother jumped in and told Smith that he could not talk to her son like that because he’s a minor, the station reports.

Smith apologized but stood by his position that the teen should not wear such a hat, at which point the mother responded that her son could wear whatever he chose, according to witnesses.

“You ain’t nobody,” the woman can be heard shouting at Smith, in video published by KCBD, an NBC affiliate.

Both parties headed out of the airport, still exchanging words, and once outside, the teen’s father got involved in the verbal altercation, reports KMID.

At that point, security officers intervened, handcuffing Smith for a brief time, though he was not arrested, a representative for the city of Midland confirmed to KOSA, a CBS affiliate station.

“F--k all that confederate sh-t,” Smith can be heard saying in video of the incident, as officers gathered around him to handcuff him.

All parties involved ultimately decided to leave the premises with no charges being filed on either side, according to KOSA.

Smith has not issued any public statement on the incident and his representatives did not return KMID’s request for comment. After the incident, he reportedly went on to perform at the West Texas BLVD Nights car show, according to Syracuse.com.

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