.

Is Canada Profiling U.S. Rappers?

January 16, 2007 12:00 AM ET

Jerome Almon, CEO of Detroit-based Murdercap Records, has filed a eyebrow-raising $900 million lawsuit in federal court against the Canadian government, the American State Department and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The suit, apparently prepared for Almon by the chief of Detroit's American Civil Liberties Union accuses the defendants of "wholesale profiling" of rap artists and African-Americans.

Almon claims that he can document more than 80 instances between 1992 and 2003 during which he was detained and questioned by border guards while trying to enter Canada. He also says that he was periodically and falsely accused of having a criminal record and that racist comments were directed at him by Canadian officials. But according to Almon, the suit is not being filed solely on his behalf.

Almon reportedly mentioned well-documented incidents in which everyone from DMX to 50 Cent to Eminem have been either refused entry or detained while attempting to enter the country. According to Almon, Canada is engaging in profiling based on a government-held belief that rap music can be blamed for an increase in gang violence and violent homicides in Toronto and Vancouver. " They're treating us as if we're criminals,'' Almon said, adding, "If the Klan had a police force, it would be the border services.'' The Canadian government has reportedly pointed to a shooting that took place in Toronto in 2003, after a 50 Cent show as an example of the direct connection between rap music and gun violence.

So what's Condoleezza Rice have to do with this? According to Almon "the State Department has in its possession secret internal Canadian investigative reports admitting that the country is worse at racial profiling than the U.S., yet, Rice has sided with the Canadian government against African Americans in what he says is destined to become 'The State Department's Katrina.'

Almon's conspiracy theory further alleges that not only is the U.S. State Department aware of Canada's prejudicial policy, but that it is complicit in a bribery cover-up relating to one of 50 Cent's aborted Canadian tours. Further, he alleges that while Canada profiles U.S. rappers, it is protects known Muslim terrorists responsible for U.S. casualties. He also claims Canada has a Rap Intelligence Unit that employs information-sharing with the FBI.

Regardless of how batshit (or not) you find these claims to be, the trial should be fun to follow. Check out this incredible list of alleged witnesses: 50 Cent, Secretary Rice, Jay-Z, P. Diddy, Oprah Winfrey, Colin Powell, Eminem, and Spike Lee.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com