Barack Obama Discusses Impact of Hip-Hop on Youth

Hip-Hop may not play a prominent role in the lives of politicians, but Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama sees the impact of the culture on current and potential voters.

Obama spoke out on Hip-Hop during an interview with local reporters in Chicago on Sunday (July 15), CNN’s Political Ticker reports.

According to the Senator, youth violence can not be blamed on those who listen and embrace Hip-Hop’s music and culture.

"I don't think that the Hip-Hop community is responsible for youth violence, but I think they haven't fully stepped up to the responsibilities to change the attitudes among youth," he said. "I think that the Hip-Hop community musicians have such sway over our young people. That's where so much of their information is received."

Obama’s comments came after he spoke on youth violence to an audience of churchgoers at Vernon Park Church of God on Chicago's southside.

Despite rap’s negative perception among critics, the presidential hopeful noted that "there's enormous potential for a positive message to be transmitted.”

“There are a whole series of messages that could be sent to our young people and these rap artists, and Hip-Hop artists, they're creative enough that they can communicate that message in a way that will appeal to young people, so we just have to tap that creativity," Obama said.