Reggae Artists Blacklisted for Anti-Gay Lyrics in Germany

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Published on March 05, 2010 with No Comments

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According to the Jamaica Observer, over the past three years Germany has blacklisted and banned 11 dancehall albums due to homophobic and/or violent lyrics. The targeted artists include Sizzla, Elephant Man, Bounty Killer, Capleton, TOK, and Baby Cham. The list is maintained by the German Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons.

According to the Observer, the organization has mandated that these albums not be advertised or sold to minors in Germany. “Breach of …[the] indexing is punishable by a fine or imprisonment,” stated Corinna Bochmann a spokesperson for the organization.

The backlash against reggae artists has recently caused Beenie Man to be yanked from an Australian show. And, due to pressure from gay rights activists, many stops on Buju Banton’s Rasta Got Soul tour resulted in cancellation. Most recently Capleton had three shows cancelled due to pressure from gay rights groups. He was to appear on the Tribute to the Legends festival in San Diego and both legs of the Ragga Muffins Festival, which took place in Long Beach and Oakland.

Ellen Khlings, editor of German reggae magazine Riddim, told the Observer “These lyrics violate German laws which gives the lobbyists legal grounds to successfully censor music and gain media exposure,” “The gay lobby is looking for cheap forwards just like some artistes look for a cheap forward” . “At the end of the day there are much more urgent things to talk about than homophobia, and artists should leave out, in my mind, the violent bashing of gays.”

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In the long run Jamaica needs to take action,”

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