Rap Basement

50 Cent

Mos Def Asks Jay-Z & 50 Cent To Join “Fight Against Racial Equality”

Posted By on September 11, 2007

Brooklyn rapper/actor Mos Def has recently wrote an open letter seeking support for six black students facing lengthy jail time for an attack on a white schoolmate in Louisiana.

According to NME, the Brooklyn-bred lyricist, who has been known for his social and political activism, is extending a public invitation to "African-Americans of influence, and all concerned parties" to use their power in order to "fight against racial inequality and show solidarity for these young people, who are being treated very harshly by the law."

The group of students in question, commonly known as the "Jena 6," are high school students in Jena, Louisiana who were arrested for beating up a white classmate after reportedly being taunted by racial slurs.

The fight occurred last August, after a black student sat under a particular tree on the school grounds where white students traditionally gather. Following his presence there, 3 nooses were hung from the tree. The students accused of hanging the nooses were suspended from school for a short period of time, causing racial tensions to rise in the neighborhood.

The six teens in question were originally charged with attempted second-degree murder but following protests from civil rights advocates, some of the charges were reduced. Yet, many feel as if they are still being treated more harshly due to their skin color.

Charges against Carwin Jones, Mychael Bell and Theo Shaw have been reduced to aggravated second-degree battery and conspiracy. Bell, who has already stood trial and been found guilty by an all white jury, will be sentenced on September 20, the day of the scheduled rally.

Robert Bailey Jr. and Bryant Purvis are still facing attempted murder charges, while the sixth student, an unidentified juvenile, faces undisclosed juvenile charges.

Mos is asking for those concerned with the treatment of the students to join him at the rally in Jena on September 20. He recently appeared alongside Princeton professor Dr. Cornel West on political satirist Bill Maher's HBO show "Reel Time" this past Friday (September 7) to bring attention to the situation. While on the show, Mos issued a challenge to celebrities and artists including Will Smith, Jay-Z, 50 Cent and Kanye West to take some form of action against the injustice. [Watch Here]

Visit freethejena6.org for more information on the upcoming rally.

  • Eric

    Is there anywhere to still hear this audio?