The Humane Society
of the United States has targeted rapper Jay-Z, due to his award winning graphic
video “99 Problems,” which features a scene of pitbulls fighting.
John Goodwin, an
Investigator for The Humane Society, labeled Jay-Z “just another rapper
caught up in the blood rapture” and called the video “an irresponsible
tribute to a cruel and illegal practice that represents one of the most serious
threats to the safety of our inner city residents.”
While some may
not view the issue of dog fights as pressing as some of the issues of the day,
he said it was a serious threat.
“It's a form
of animal cruelty that's illegal in all 50 states for a reason,” Goodwin
said. “A closer look reveals its crucial links to the more common forms
of violence and misconduct deplored by Hip-Hop's critics.”
Goodwin said that
a study of pit-bull mauling cases reveal that most dogs that attack have been
abused in order to make them “mean” and become better fighters.
Goodwin said these dogs are more prone to attack people.
for the violence in Hip-Hop videos argue that the imagery only reflects the
harsh truth of the streets,” Goodwin continued. “But in this case,
pop culture has helped to structure a grim reality. The glorification of fierce
pit bulls and organized dog fighting by hip-hop artists coincides with a dramatic
increase in dog fighting nationwide, despite a spate of newly-enacted state
and federal laws.”
for other Hip-Hop artists to come forward and renounce dog fighting.
often mirror the actions of the celebrities they idolize,” Goodwin noted.
“Artists who insist on spreading these images through their work must
accept their roles in perpetuating community violence.”