Twista was dropped from an Alabama music festival,
after city officials threatened to withhold $200,000 from the event if the rapper
Five commissioners in Jefferson County agreed
yesterday (March 25) that they would not provide public money for the City Stages
festival that is scheduled to take place during Fathers Day weekend in June
if the Chicago rapper performed.
The officials said that Twista's lyrics were
racially insensitive and anti-woman. Organziers of the festival issued a statement
and said that the rapper would have performed clean versions of his songs.
"City Stages has no more important partner
than the Jefferson County Commission," the statement read. "Our partner
has made us aware they do not regard the hip-hop act Twista as appropriate for
this year's festival. We have listened to their concerns, and Twista will not
perform at City Stages, even though he was to have played a clean show."
"I think it was a very, very wise decision
on their part," Larry Langford, the commission president, told The Birmingham
News. "They're trying to build a venue where you can take the whole family
and not be caught off-guard. I am delighted they heard our plea and pulled him."
The commission also felt that the rapper's use
of the N word was not tolerable and labeled the rapper's music as "filth."
Langford said that he has used the N word to
other black people in the past, but said that using the word is "degrading
in any context it's used."
"It's a question of decency," Langford
said. "Whenever disrespect for women, people or races raises its ugly head,
I'm going to speak out - especially when it comes to spending taxpayer money."
Rappers have been the biggest draw for the festival,
with Outkast setting the festival's single-day attendance record in 2002. Ludacris
also proved to be the biggest draw of last years event.