New York State Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries (D-57 District) has demanded that the New York Comptroller withdraw the $84 million state pension fund invested in Universal Music Group and its parent company Vivendi if Nas is allowed to release his new album under the title N****r.
The withdrawal is part of the “Abolish The N-Word” initiative lead by Jeffries and Rev. Clinton M. Miller of Brooklyn’s Brown Memorial Baptist Church. The idea has also been supported by the likes of the National Action Network’s Rev. Al Sharpton and N.Y. State Senator Antoine Thompson (D-60th District).
“Enough is enough,” said Assemblyman Jeffries. “It is time for Nas and other Hip-Hop artists to clean up their act and stop flooding the airwaves with the N-word. There are thousands of words in the English language. Nas and Universal can find another title for his upcoming album.” Nas expressed no plans to change the title.
“It’s like talking to your child about sex,” Nas explained to Rolling Stone. “It’s probably going to make people uncomfortable. I don’t expect a lot of people to sell a record called N****r. Hopefully people can open their minds up and lose some of the fear and deal with it. It’s just an album.” Nas said that while the album is almost completed, he is not ready to discuss it. However, he did add that the recent hate crimes at the Tupac Amaru Center for the Arts was further proof that a dialogue on race needed to remain open. Click HERE for the full interview.
As it currently stands, New York’s Common Retirement Fund has an estimated value of $154.5 billion, $3 billion of which is invested in 16 major entertainment companies such as Time Warner, Disney and Universal. At press time Island Def Jam Group Chairman Antonio “L.A.” Reid said both he and Def Jam are firmly behind Nas’ decision to release the already controversial album on Dec. 11.