Retired neurosurgeon and possible GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson criticized hip-hop culture this weekend, suggesting it plays a role in destroying the African-American community.
In an interview Sunday on R&B radio station WBLS, Carson, a committed Christian, lamented that modern culture has turned African-Americans away from the faith of their forefathers.
“We need to reestablish faith in our communities and the values and principles that got us through slavery, that got us through Jim Crow, and segregation, and all kinds of horrible things that were heaped upon us,” he said. “Why were we able to get through those? Because of our faith, because of our family, because of our values, and as we allow the hip-hop community to destroy those things for us, and as we grasp onto what’s politically correct and not what is correct, we continue to deteriorate.”
But one caller balked at the notion and phoned into the station to insist that hip-hop has been a force for good for African Americans. Likewise, the radio show host interviewing Carson voiced his skepticism.
“When you said ‘hip-hop,’ my antennae went up very quickly, because I said, ‘Wait a minute that sounds like an old argument that they used to make about rock ‘n’ roll/R&B back in the fifties.’ That’s what they used to say,” the host said.
Carson then backtracked to clarify that he wasn’t speaking about hip-hop at large.
“When I talk about the hip-hop community, I’m talking about the aspect of modern society that pretty much dismisses anything that has to do with Jesus Christ, that’s what I’m talking about,” he said.
He also said during his Sunday interview that he will announce if he will run for president during the first part of May.