Over the weekend Snoop Lion, The League Of Young Voters Education Fund, and BET joined forces to help put together No Guns Allowed: Disarming Violence In Our Community. A roundtable discussion that along with Snoop Lion included TI, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Calif), H.E.L.P.E.R Foundation executive director Melyn Hayward, Jr., writer and director of the critically acclaimed movie on Oscar Grant’s final day, Fruitvale Station , Ryan Coogler, and executive director of New Generation Foundation, Brandon Jones. The discussion was moderated by Dr. Rob “Biko” Barker, the LYVEF Executive Director.
Speaking on gun violence, and the necessity of events of this nature, T.I. stated, “I believe the country that we live in, no disrespect to my forefathers…the country that we live in has made gun violence as American as apple pie. Gun violence has been here before I got here, and we’re trying to do what we can to see that it can be lessoned, if not banished before I leave.”
When asked why gun violence against African American minors isn’t as addressed as needed within the media, Maxine Waters replied, “The fact of the matter is, if you’re waiting on somebody else to do something, it ain’t gonna happen.” She continued, “There’s a lot of questions about politicians, and what happened in the United States Senate. They couldn’t even vote for a bill that would do background checks…we need some street heat, you all. We need street heat, we need you all to go and register to vote. I have a lot of people who come up to me and say, ‘Mrs. Waters, I can’t vote because I did some time,’ and I say, ’When do you get so worried about the fact that somebody might come after you because you vote?’ You get worried when somebody come after you because you really did something wrong. If you’re in California for example, you’re not on probation or parole, you can register, you can vote. Every state has a different law, find out what that law is. When you learn how to use your power, to put some people in office, and then take them out if they’re not doing the things you want them to do, then we can exercise the kind of power that can get the kind of public policy, that will do the background checks, that’s very simple, that’s very mild.”
There is a video below of the discussion: