Outspoken rapper Mos Def (aka Yasiin Bey) has just been denied entry to his native America. He was flying in from South Africa where he now lives and was about to kick start a tour.
[UPDATE: 23/05/2014 According to Times Live of South Africa the story is false and Mos Def hasn’t attempted to return to the US]
“I lived in Brooklyn 33 years of my life. I thought I’d be buried in that place. And around seven years ago, I was like, you know, ‘I gotta go, I gotta leave.’ It’s very hard to leave… maaan, let me tell you something, for a guy like me, who had five or six generations not just in America but in one town in America, to leave America, things gotta be not so good with America.”
In the track Mr Nigga he dealt directly with issues of immigration control.
But I go over seas and I get over siezed London-Heathro, me and my people They think that illegal’s a synonym for Negro Far away places, customs agents flagrant They think the dark face is smuggle waiting in cases Bags inspected, now we arrested…
In a video released in July of last year, the hip hop artist voluntarily underwent a force-feeding similar to those dished out in Guantánamo. Disturbingly, he screamed for help before it was stopped. Viewing is pure stomach churning. At the time at least 40 of Guantánamo’s estimated 120 hunger strikers are being force-fed.
It became the 8 most viewed story on The Guardian website. Ever.
Talk about making enemies.