Nas Controversy Continues, NY Politician Says Change Album Title Or UMG Loses $84 Mil
According to local New York news outlet, The Brooklyn Paper, Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries (D-Fort Greene) has requested that Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli withdraw the $84 million that New York's state pension fund has invested in Universal and its parent company, Vivendi.
"[They are] profiting from a racial slur that has been used to dehumanize people of color for centuries," Jeffries said. "It is time for Nas and other hip-hop artists to clean up their act and stop flooding the airwaves with the N-word."
Despite prior reports that the Queens MC's album title, Nigga, was shut down by Def Jam, Nas has since clarified that his new album will be called Nigger.
Although Universal did not respond to The Brooklyn Paper's request for comment, a spokesman for DiNapoli, who manages the pension fund, said the comptroller "is concerned about this issue and is intending to contact the company and urge them not to release the album."
In February, the Council passed legislation urging people not to use the racial slur. Jeffries, a former assistant general counsel at CBS and lawyer at Viacom, said he is more interested in impacting the industry's bottom line.
"It's a staggering amount of money, which at least justifies a review of the appropriateness of the content that is flooding the public," he said.