Police and Easter Show organisers have attempted to walk back an apparent ban on rap music at this year’s carnival, characterising it as a crackdown on offensive language and aggression rather than an entire musical genre, SMH report.
Drill, a darker and grittier subgenre of rap, has long been targetted by NSW Police, along with its Sydney practitioners. On Wednesday, however, Royal Agricultural Society of NSW chief executive Brock Gilmour said organisers, not police, took the decision to prohibit music that contained offensive language or “aggressive tones”. He said he did not want mums, dads and children hearing swear words at a family event.
NSW Council of Civil Liberties president Josh Pallas said it was an example of the over policing of marginalised communities. “In a way it’s thought-policing because rap music is just another instance of free expression,” he said.
“If police have clear evidence of the way this music is complicit in recruiting people into gangs, they need to be far more transparent and specific in producing that publicly. Show us the evidence.”