Commissioner Bratton: 'So called artists who are basically thugs that basically celebrate violence.'
NYPD detectives have been investigating due to three people being injured and one person dead as a result. Troy Ave, a Brooklyn rapper, has been formerly charged for attempted murder after authorities discovered he was a primary shooter. Charges could upgraded to murder as more details are being investigated.
In fact, Bratton, in an WCBS 880 interview, goes on to further discuss how rap, and the 'thugs' who create it causes issues for law enforcement during times like this. "The crazy world of the so-called rap artists who are basically thugs that basically celebrate the violence…and unfortunately that violence often times manifests itself during their performances and that’s exactly what happened last [Wednesday].”
I've confronted circumstances where hip-hop, and gang culture have been used in the same sentence. "Rap just purports violence", "gangsters are the one rapping and talking about drugs and violence". Drugs and violence are instanteously linked to hip-hop and rap and it drives me bezerks.
Granted - I can't sit here, and deny what it is. They are several verses I rap off the top of my head where artist glorifies violence, and casually raps about drugs. Yes, I will admit that they're some rappers who choose to stay affiliated with gangs. But is you done, or is you finished Bratton?
Poverty, and being grief-stricken by your environment are the roots of rap and gangs. That, and the people who are succumbed to the circumstances are perhaps the two things that the separate entities share. Rap was birthed as an oral art form where catchy (phat) beats were hand-in-hand with witty, and complexed rhymes. Something that a few Black & Brown kids created and capitalized on. Gang culture was birthed centuries ago, before O.Y. & Y.Gz, before Italian mobs took over NY, before the bloods & crips, before the Black Panthers confusion, before prohibition, before Leonardo DiCaprio and Daniel Lewis.
Like with all things, great things happen when gang affiliates decide to pick up a pen and get their thoughts into words, into a sick poem. Just like how our therapist prescribe a journal for a patient to get out their anxieties, problems, and frustrations in a healthy way, so does rap.
By constantly coupling rap, and gang culture together, you're creating the false notion that ALL RAP & HIP-HOP IS VIOLENT. Imagine if Black, and other ethnic politicians, and officials were to constantly couple rock music with violence, and mental instability. Especially after artist reportedly bit the head off of a live chicken. Or when several well known artist have died from apparent drug overdoses, and suicides while battling depression.
I want to see my community, city, state, and country remain safe, but I also want my favorite artist, and entertainers to remain blameless when it comes to their respective line of work. Can some of them do better? Sure. Throw more positive, and consciousness on ya'll tracklist, but I'm still here for the gun talks and trap mode. As for Billy boy? Understand that as the city's finest continue on their crackdown of the largest and most elaborate gangs in the state, the pressure to speak on violence, gun violence especially, is high. Bratton might want to consider blaming the individual, and poor choices made instead of blaming the outlet they use to hold assailants accountable.