I admittedly spend a lot of time here at AB.com talking smack about dumb rappers. Last week I apologized to Nas, because even though his N-Word manifesto was a dumb ploy to remain relevant, at least he did back it up with an album worthy of all the trouble. Untitled is a hands-down modern day classic.
This week, he kept up the momentum, joining ColorOfChange.org's push for censorship at Fox News. He also managed to stick to his prewritten script and not say anything particularly dumb.
About four hours after the announcement that his controversial, politically charged ninth album was number one in the country, Nas was on a small podium in front of Fox News headquarters in New York City protesting what he sees as racist attacks against Black Americans and presidential candidate Barack Obama.Here's the video of the protest.
In a brief prepared statement, the multi-platinum rapper pointed out examples of what he and ColorOfChange see as a long racist smear campaign against the Obama family: The onscreen graphic that referred to Michelle Obama as the Senator's "baby mama"; Bill O'Reilly casually using the phrase "lynching party" to refer to attacks on the Senator's wife; referencing to the couple's infamous fist thump as a "terrorist fist jab." Said Nas, "Fox poisons this country every time they air racist propaganda and try to call it news. This should outrage every American that Fox uses hateful language to talk about the person that may be the first black president."
The rapper stood next to 19 neatly stacked cardboard boxes, with the number 620,127 taped to the side of each one -- over 600,000 signatures gathered by ColorOfChange demanding that network president Roger Ailes "find a solution to address racial stereotyping and hate-mongering before it hits the airwaves." Fox rejected the petitions, but Brave New Films says that Comedy Central's The Colbert Report will accept them instead.
Here's his subsequent appearance on The Colbert Report.
And the obligatory, clueless Bill O'Reilly rebuke.
Sure, this is all just another elaborate plot to sell albums, but let's give credit where it's due. As much as we criticize (rightfully might I as) some hip hop artists for being reckless and spreading ignorance, we should highlight them when they actually get something right.
Well done, Nasir Jones.
Rapper Nas Delivers Fox News Petition, Says Network Is "Scared" [HuffPost]