In my constant fight against racism and the stereotypes that come with it, I find myself asking this question: what is it with rappers and jail? The fame and financial stability that come along with being a famous rapper naturally lead to this question, at least for me it does. I think I finally found the answer. Or Answers.
First, jail is NOT limited to famous Black rappers. Famous people of all walks of life are arrested for various violations of the law. Driving Under The Influence, Reckless Driving, weapons charges, tax evasion; it’s happening to more than just Black rap artists. But I want to focus on rappers and gun charges.
Even throwing that realization aside, I asked myself, knowing the risk of being born a Black man alone, why would someone who doesn’t need the money or the reputation, risk his freedom. And then I considered the way our country works. Black men don’t trust this country. I could spend days discussing why, but I won’t. The important fact is that some Black men would rather risk their freedom to “protect” themselves than to leave their safety in the hands of the police. Why would anyone treated the way Black men are in this country, trust the law or its enforcers to protect their well being or their family?
Furthermore, I realized the mo’ money, the mo’ problems. With fame and money comes an increased level of financial security, but a decreased level of physical security. Unfortunately for some rappers, who have already been disenfranchised by prior convictions, the idea of using the law to your advantage is a lot more difficult, even with a million dollar record contract.
Featured Photo: “A Cell” -Geoff Stearns via Flickr, CC