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Adams met with Fivio Foreign, Maino, B-Lovee and others on Tuesday night to open a dialogue about the popular Hip Hop sub-genre that’s been blamed for the rise in gun violence in the Big Apple.
The open dialogue comes on the heels of multiple murders of rappers connected to NYC’s drill scene. Bronx drill rapper C-Hii Wvttz and Fivio Foreign affiliate Tdott Woo were both shot and killed this month alone.
In response, Mayor Adams spoke out against “alarming” drill music, calling for it to be wiped from social media before holding a meeting with Brooklyn rappers.
How could a Black leader criticize rap music? Turns out Mayor Adams is doing what was done before him.
Using rap as a scapegoat isn’t anything new to NYC. In 1993, at an anti-rap rally, Harlem minister Rev. Calvin Butts waged war against explicit rap music lyrics. Instead of meeting with artists to discuss problems and solutions like Adams, between 200-300 supporters at the Abyssinian Baptist Church denounced the music and cheered as a steamroller crushed hip hop CDs and cassettes to smithereens.
While less demonstrative, retired police captain Mayor Eric Adams looks to build a bridge of communication. Rap lyrics are often the subject of debate when it comes to tackling ubiquitous gun violence. Nonetheless, few if any government officials take the time to understand the nuances and determining factors of gun violence.
There were 485 murders in New York City in 2021, the highest total in 10 years. There were also more than 1,500 shootings, the highest in 15 years and double the number just two years ago. All of those bullets didn’t come from a rapper’s gun, yet hip hop continually remains under a microscope.