I wouldn’t cross the street to watch over-the-top, beautiful but annoyingly nasal pop singer Nicki Minaj perform, but I’d walk miles to shake her hand.
Over the weekend, the mega-star answered Twitter questions about a lip syncing contest using her “Regret in Your Tears” music video. One audacious follower asked if the singer would pay for her college tuition. It never hurts to ask, right? Minaj not only agreed but offered to pay the tuition for other fans, tweeting,
Show me straight A’s that I can verify w/ur school and I’ll pay it. Who wants to join THAT contest?!?! Dead serious. Shld I set it up?
And she did set it up. Requests came in from all quarters, containing transcripts and student loan balances.
“U want to go to college but can’t? How much do u need to get u in school? Is that the only thing stopping u?” Minaj asked an immigrant fan who said she could not afford classes. Minaj sent the money. She also assisted a single mother who needed $500 for her remaining tuition, and sent $6,000 to cover the fall semester for another Twitter follower, including his room and board, courses and meal plan.
Yes, I am keeping my fingers crossed that Minaj’s spontaneous outburst of kindness and charity isn’t exploited by scammers. She’s certainly laying herself wide open to be misled. Yet one cannot be generous and compassionate and not be vulnerable to the worst in society. I’m sure Nicki knows that. To her credit, she is willing to court the risk to change some lives for the better.
She’s a deserving Ethics Hero, and boy, I needed one today.
Pointer: Alexander Cheezem