From The Grio — On July 18th, BET became the target of heavy thumbs and repeated exclamation marks following the ban of Georgia-native rapper Killer Mike’s latest video, “Burn.”

Politically charged, the artist expresses his sympathy for the Oscar Grant‘s of our country, the financial plagues of lower-income neighborhoods, lies and deceit within church communities, and the prison industrial complex to name a few.

Despite the strong profanity used within the lyrics, and violent atmosphere portrayed in the video, the song within itself is comprised of all of the ingredients that hip-hop is often criticized for not having as of late. With artists like Killer Mike attempting to take a stand to help assist in changing the paradigm of music today, BET opted to reject the video from its network and banned its play.

Click here to view a Grio slideshow of the top 20 political rap songs

Killer Mike took to his Twitter account to report to his fans and fellow hip-hop connoisseurs about the ban, engaging in dialogue with his supporters and opposition alike. “Have we as American[s] and Hip Hop head[s] gotten so lazy and apathetic that we let ‘Burn’ go unnoticed by the masses? I, on the behalf of the poor and disenfranchised, [ask you] to reconsider the decision NOT to play ‘Burn,” he wrote in a direct tweet to BET’s President of Programming, Stephen Hill.

“[Because] of Teen Summit and Rap City showing Cube, PE [Public Enemy], Goodie Mob and other videos, I grew smarter,” he insisted. “Why not play this? If the violence in ‘Burn’ offended you, we [could’ve] shown it at [night] and had a discussion with kids around it, but to NOT play it is shameful!”

This past April, an optimistic Debra Lee defended “the new” Black Entertainment Television during a nationally broadcast interview on Fox Business Network. Stating that she and her colleagues had gotten “more strict” with what they allowed on air because the “hip-hop industry got a bit more risqué, raunchy…” she began, “we actually had to bring that back some and say ‘just because it can be on the air, doesn’t mean it has to be on the air.”

Even so, in the previous years and the months to follow, there has not appeared to be significant change in the use of derogatory language or stereotypical images of women, besides the discontinuation of BET Uncut.

Ironically enough, there appears to have been a decline in videos altogether and a spike in material banned from women, such as Ciara’s “Ride” and Teairra Mari’s “Sponsor,” which sparked controversy when compared to their allowed equivalents of Trey Songz’ sexual “Neighbors Know my Name” and Fabolous’ money-driven “Throw it in the Bag.”

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  • ChezCerise

    I’m still trying to fathom J.Cole losing best new artist to Wiz Khalifa at the awards

  • DBG

    When BET banned Little Brother because their material was “too intelligent” then I banned BET and haven’t watched one program since. Not that it looks like I’ve missed much anyway. BET is Viacom… so it isn’t BET so much as it’s the corporate governance structure that doesn’t really care for material that is too politically contraversial. They’d rather you watch Single Ladies, reality TV and women booty poppin’ to music.

    It says something really underhanded about what they think of their audience.

    http://www.hiphopdx.com/index/news/id.5769/title.little-brother-finally-intelligent-enough-for-bet

  • Smh… Yeah I don’t tune into BET and haven’t since AJ & Free left 106. I think the entire urban music industry is in the business of silencing “smart hip hop”. At this point I am content with having to seek out music I want to listen to. I have become accustomed to not relying on the tv/radio to give me quality… anything. I would encourage people to do the same.

    Killer Mike, and other artist shouldn’t be too worried about BET, we live in the age of the internet, and the fans will hear/see it with or without them.

  • Me27

    its not just BET…I think the entire music industry is in the business of silencing intelligent hip hop. And I agree with Robin Nicole; I too stopped relying on tv and radio for quality music. The quality of what’s being offered has gone way down hill. I rely more on the internet, websites like this one, and just old-fashioned word-of-mouth to find out about new music and great artist who tend to get no radio/tv air-play…

  • whilome

    You couldn’t pay me to watch BET.

    Seriously.