Rappers Rocked The Vote
Now that the election has run its course, T.J. Holmes of Don’t Sleep With T.J. Holmes challenges his audience to continue the fight and remain engaged in politics that will affect them in the short term. Noting that because the U.S. Congress was unable to come to a resolution on the debt crisis, the average American taxpayer will see a $3500 increase in new taxes in the coming weeks.
Also in this episode of Don’t Sleep, he had rapper Game on the program who was recorded by TMZ earlier in the week giving out $20 to 500 people to pay a train ticket and cab fare to and from voting stations in New York City, totaling $10,000. Noble acts such as this illustrate the sense of urgency and commitment that black people of all walks and backgrounds went to in order to ensure that regardless of who you voted for, you actually went out and voted.
We all know the history of Black voter suppression from “poll taxes” to the latest GOP shenanigans of “voter fraud,” however, it is truly remarkable to see our efforts have paid off in a meaningful and tangible way and rappers, who are often excoriated and labeled as misogynists and bad role models should be applauded for their help in this election. Even the hottest rapper out now, 2 Chainz, helped to spread the word to convicted felons to let their vote be counted if eligible to vote. Rapper David Banner was present on Don’t Sleep for Election Night, where he spoke eloquently about the expectations for President Obama and Black people’s need to demand more of him in his second term. Even at the aristocratic level of rap, Jay-Z, a longtime supporter of President Obama, was out and about on the campaign trail in its final week of touring, telling audiences, “I got 99 problems but Mitt aint one.”
So let’s applaud them for this week and actually acknowledge that hip hop not only influenced a mass audience to act, but to do so in a positive and democratic fashion. Collectively, a large part of the rap community, big names and small names, came together to let America know that their platform could be better served to raise awareness in their community and that effort is to be commended.