It seems like the war on terror….um, excuse me, the war on hip hop yields yet another victory to the “Responsibles” – the group of people that feel like hip hop artists should be responsible for their actions. In this episode of “Saying All the Wrong Things” Anderson Cooper interviews hip hopper Cam’ron and asks him about the Hip Hop Code of Ethics.
I never grew up in a situation that enforced this mentality, but I can understand the logic and the foundation from which Cam speaks (not saying that I agree with it). Cam speaks about snitching as alienating his core fan base and creating an atmosphere for him that makes him susceptible to being the target of more crime. All of this makes me feel like being a hip hop artist is a life long image commitment – whatever you come in as, you have to maintain that image even after you’re no longer an artist. It’s just strange to me that people can become very successful and have no problem potentially throwing all of their hard work away with a few misjudgments. Cam speaks about being a business man, but a true businessman knows how to handle himself in every situation. Maybe that’s why he issued an apology for his statements shortly after this aired.
What I’m also wondering is this, does that little black square on the CD cover that reads “Parental Advisory Explicit Lyrics” give the artist the freedom to do and say whatever they want? Is that some kind of force field that should shield you from any criticism for responsibility? If that’s the case, why is Russell Simmons so uptight? If that little black sticker is on there then there’s no reason to stop the artists from using those three offensive words. It’s the listener’s fault because we proceed at our own risks. Right??
I’m still trying to figure all of this out.