For years rap artists’ songs have filled the airwaves and sometimes became the soundtrack to violence in the streets. Rev. Al Sharpton is tired of this and wants the Federal Communications Commission to take action.
On Thursday, Sharpton asked the FCC to punish artists and radio stations connected with violent acts by denying them airplay on radio and television for 90 days according to the Associated Press.
“The outrage of the pattern of violence that has occurred at radio stations requires some action,” Sharpton said to AP. “What has been absent is some kind of government move to stop these actions happening on federally regulated radio stations.”
But some say this is a violation of free speech.
“They pose tremendous First Amendment problems,” said Andrew Jay Schwartzman, president of the Media Access Project to AP. “It’s very hard to come up with a standard that works. The bottom line is this is not something the FCC was created or equipped to handle.”
Some college students think that Al Sharpton’s approach will not work if he doesn’t look at all types of music.
“You can’t say it is just rap music,” said Adia Thomas a student at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College. “If you’re going to attack the music industry you have to attack all aspects including all genres of music—all media in general.”