Hip-Hop to Blame For Pot-Smoking Tots?

This is a partial transcript of "The Big Story With John Gibson," March 7, 2007, that has been edited for clarity.

JOHN GIBSON, HOST: Now to the "Big Debate," two teenagers were arrested this week in Dallas for allegedly giving two toddlers pot and then stupidly videotaping it. It is not hard to be smoking mad at them. But should we also direct our anger at a culture that glamorizes blunts, like the ones used in this video, and other drugs. I think the hip-hop industry has some of the blame coming to them for these tots being pushed to do pot. My next guest is going to disagree with me. Chuck Creekmur is the founder of allhiphop.com.

So, Chuck, why shouldn't I blame hip-hop? I mean, I hear this talk about blunts, which are big fat marijuana cigarettes, in hip-hop records all the time. Why shouldn't I think those kids got that idea from listening to hip-hop?

CHUCK CREEKMUR, ALLHIPHOP.COM: Well, first of all, I would ask, why would you? I mean, none of the reports that I have read have specifically stated hip-hop's influence on these individuals. I do not know anything about them nor do I know their parents. They are minors. And there was a mother in the home. So I would suggest that you blame the mother who was in the house at the time these children were given weed.

GIBSON: I don't let the mother off the hook, Chuck. But I also think that the hip-hop industry has a lot also to do with the way young, especially African-Americans, but also white kids, behave. And this is one of those instances where I do not have to go very far in my hip-hop collection to find guys talking about these blunts, and that is specifically what these teenagers were doing with these kids.

CREEKMUR: I mean, was there rap in the video or was there something in the video that suggested that they were listening to rap and then started doing what they did?

GIBSON: These are 15-year-old African-American boys, right?


GIBSON: There is little chance they are listening to Karen Carpenter or music from my era.

CREEKMUR: Well, I do not know what they're listening to. You do not know what I listen to. I listen to all sorts of music. So I think it is really presumptuous to say that hip-hop glorifies weed and marijuana smoking alone, as if that was exclusive to hip-hop.

GIBSON: Hip-hop glorifies blunts, it glorifies guns, it is misogynistic towards women, it encourages kids to do anything — "Get Rich or Die Trying," I believe is (INAUDIBLE). It has a lot of deleterious effects on young kids.

CREEKMUR: Right. But these are things that have been really promoted in the media, promoted in the board room, frankly, there are million- dollar budgets behind these rappers and these artists. But there's also a very positive side to hip-hop that gets very little support on several levels, even from...

GIBSON: Chuck, you know it is not just me making this complaint. You have heard Bill Cosby make it, you've heard leaders of the African-American community make complaints about hip-hop as well, right?

CREEKMUR: Absolutely. I personally am one of hip-hop's fiercest critics. Because I am within the culture and I want to see it thrive and survive and continue to provide jobs and economic growth for the community. So I think that there are a lot of different levels to this. And I think you should walk up and bring your friendly neighborhood executive into this discussion too and ask him why he gives these artists million dollar budgets.

And also you need to ask the parents and you need to ask the larger question about society and why a child would give an infant a blunt. There is nobody in my community that will ever support degenerate behavior like this.

GIBSON: Chuck Creekmur, founder of allhiphop.com. Chuck, thanks very much. Appreciate you coming in.

CREEKMUR: Thank you.

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