In a hauntingly animated four-minute short film for The New York Times, Jay Z uses his name to educate and spread the word about the failure of the The War on Drugs. In the video, titled The War on Drugs Is an Epic Fail, Jay Z tears into decades of government policies that targeted the African-American community and leading to record high incarceration rates in the US.
When strict anti-narcotics laws unfairly targeted minorities in the 1980s, the rapper explains, “young men like me who hustled became the sole villain, and drug addicts lack moral fortitude”. Now white businessmen are profiting off the decriminalized marijuana trade, while men of colour with jail records are barred from participating in the industry. “Why are white men poised to get rich doing the same thing African-Americans have been going to prison for?” he asks making a pretty valid point.
“Rates of drug use are as high as they were when Nixon declared this so-called war in 1971,” Jay Z says nearing the end of the short film, “Forty-five years later, it’s time to rethink our policies and laws. The war on drugs is an epic fail.”
Watch the powerful video below.
It really is time to rethink our policies.
What are your thoughts?