President Obama Invites Some Of Rap’s Biggest & Brightest To Keep Giving “The Message”
On Friday April 15, President Obama invited a group to the White House in order to better understand and bring awareness to his “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative. According to The Root, that meeting group included several handfuls of Hip-Hop acts, including J. Cole, Chance The Rapper, Ludacris, Nicki Minaj, Pusha T, Rick Ross, Busta Rhymes, and Talib Kweli. Rolling Stone reports that Wale and DJ Khaled were in attendance. Rapsody revealed she was also on hand, via her Instagram page. Non-Hip-Hop artists Alicia Keys and Janelle Monáe were also featured invited guests.
The guests, making a cross-section of music in Hip-Hop and R&B/Pop, have varying messages and subjects in their lyrics. However, each is believed to have charities and pasts dedicated to enriching the lives and choices of young people. In January, President Obama met with MC Kendrick Lamar in the Oval Office.
Having funded more than $1.5 billion since its February 2014 implementation, Rolling Stone reports that My Brother’s Keeper touts six milestones for boys and young men of color: Getting a healthy start, reading at grade level by the third grade, graduating from high school ready for college or career, completing post-secondary training, entering the workforce and keeping young adults on track and giving them second chances.
“Many of these artists have lent their voices and platforms to promoting these issues,” according to an unnamed White House official. “Through their own nonprofit work or artistic commitment, many of these artists have found ways to engage on the issues of criminal-justice reform and empowering disadvantaged young people across the country.”
Senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and My Brother’s Keeper task force chairman Broderick Johnson were reportedly on hand.
Photos of the gathering were reportedly not permitted, though several of the attendees confirmed the event via social media:
President Obama has publicly stated that after leaving office, he plans to remain instrumental in My Brother’s Keeper’s development.