Russell Simmons – Is An Idiot, Recommends Censorship
Billboard.com reports: In the wake of radio host Don Imus‘ firing over racially insensitive comments about the Rutgers women’s basketball team, many activists in the black community have turned their attention to rap’s misogynistic lyrics and begun to question what steps the music industry should take to police itself.
Now, Russell Simmons and Dr. Benjamin Chavis, on behalf of the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, have issued a recommendation that the recording and broadcast industries voluntarily censor the “misogynistic” words “bitch and “ho” and the “racially offensive” word “nigger” from future recordings.
“We recommend the formation of a music industry Coalition on Broadcast Standards, consisting of leading executives from music, radio and television industries,” the HHSAN statement continues. “The Coalition would recommend guidelines for lyrical and visual standards within the industries. We also recommend that the recording industry establish artist mentoring programs and forums to stimulate effective dialogue between artists, hip-hop fans, industry leaders and others to promote better understanding and positive change.”
Some rap artists believe the issue is being taken out of context. “I call women ‘hos’ in my music but that doesn’t mean I’m trying to degrade someone. That’s just the way we talk,” female rapper Remy Ma tells Billboard.com. “I think ‘Pac said it best: once you take the power away from the word, it doesn’t mean the same thing.”