Rep. Trey Radel (R-FL) told NowThisNews on Wednesday that he loves “so-called gangsta rap,” and especially hip-hop group Public Enemy, because he feels the song “Fight the Power” somehow mirrors his own struggles in Washington, D.C. and the scandals of the Obama administration.
“This is a song that came out really, if you really get down to it, in many ways reflects the conservative message of having a heavy-handed federal government, of a party where…” he said, trailing off. “Chuck D and I may disagree on certain philosophies of government — but I think at the end of the day, and this is where I take my love of hip-hop music, of where you can see there have been issues with heavy-handed law enforcement, like the Department of Justice like we see now with the AP, or heavy-handed government in and of itself.”
Chuck D and Public Enemy were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last month, becoming just the fourth rap group to be honored by the museum. Chuck D has also spoken out in favor of President Barack Obama’s endorsement of same sex marriage, although he’s not an outspoken supporter of the president’s by any means. He also recently headed up a project called Operation Skid Row, a grassroots group that distributes donations to homeless people.
While those unfamiliar with Public Enemy’s lyrics might be forgiven for thinking that Rep. Radel hadn’t completely missed the message, those more familiar with the group’s music might recall their disenchantment with the very power structures of which Radel is a part, as evidenced by “Fight the Power,” which reminds listeners: “Most of my heroes don’t appear on no stamps; sample a look back and you look and find; nothing but rednecks for 400 years if you check.”
This video is from NowThisNews, published Thursday, May 16, 2013.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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