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Papoose Advocates at New York State Capitol for Fair Treatment of Hip-Hop Artist

Papoose Advocates at New York State Capitol for Fair Treatment of Hip-Hop Artist

Brooklyn-born rapper Papoose made an impactful appearance at the New York State Capitol, advocating for Assembly Bill A127, which aims to prevent the use of creative or artistic expression, specifically in hip-hop, against defendants in criminal cases.

Papoose shared videos of his address to politicians, emphasizing that hip-hop has offered many artists an escape from challenging environments and the opportunity to build successful careers. He argued that using a rapper’s lyrics against them in court is unjust.

“Today, we visited the Capitol to push for change on a crucial issue. I referenced my track ‘Law Library’ as an example,” he said. Papoose highlighted New York’s music industry’s economic significance, generating over 202,000 jobs and contributing $19 billion to the state’s GDP.

He emphasized that the bill, introduced by Assemblywoman Cruz and other lawmakers, would protect artists from being unfairly penalized for their creative expression. A companion bill, Senate Bill S1738, was passed on March 27.

Papoose also pointed out that this practice is predominantly used against hip-hop artists. “Researchers and legal scholars have noted this method’s disproportionate impact on Black and Brown artists in hip-hop and rap,” he said.

“AB127 aims to establish clear legal guidelines on the admissibility of lyrics as evidence, curbing the misuse of creative expression for prosecutorial purposes.”

The use of rappers’ lyrics in legal proceedings has gained attention in recent high-profile cases, including the RICO case against Atlanta rapper Young Thug. Papoose’s support for the bill highlights the growing call for fair treatment of artists in the legal system.


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