After nearly four years and an appeal, former drug kingpin “Freeway” Ricky Ross recently lost his lawsuit against rapper Rick Ross that claimed the MMG head, born, William Roberts II, had used his identity for monetary gain. But there are lessons to be learned from the situation, according to Freeway. In a statement issued to AllHipHop, Ross speaks on authenticity in the culture of hip hop, the glorification of drug dealing in its music and the social repercussions on the youth.
Read his statement, below.
“I respect Hip-Hop as an art form and consider many of its artists some of my close friends. But I believe the art form owes an obligation of authenticity. You cannot go out and say you sold cocaine at Kilo to Metric ton scale and be so detached from the experience. If you do, you have an obligation to the youth to tell them the truth and not lie about the facts of your circumstance to try to further validate the mistruth.
There is a teachable moment about the state of our community when a man who has a respectable job as a correctional officer, has to recreate himself in my former image as a large-scale kingpin to gain what he feels is social acceptance as a successful man. I along with many others would have given it all up for stability and opportunity, when Reagan came into office with Trickle down gutting assistance programs, and privatization of public sector jobs ripped through our cities it strip-mined those types of stable jobs in a very short period from Black America.
I will continue to go around the country and speak at schools, speaking to the need for the youth to avoid getting caught up in the dope game. Also I will be going city to city giving artists that don’t get looks by labels Mixtape exposure. I look forward to the release of my autobiographical book due out in February, and film in development to help tell the truth about how Black American Cities developed and turned to drugs, the dope game and its consequences.”
Follow XXL on Facebook
Source: XXL MAG