Artist News

Krept & Konan launch petition calling for police to stop criminalising drill rappers

By | Published on Friday 14 June 2019

Krept & Konan

UK rap duo Krept & Konan have launched a petition against the criminalisation of drill rappers. This is prompted in particular by the jailing of Skengdo and AM earlier this year for breaching an injunction that barred them from performing their track ‘Attempted 1.0’.

“The police are using laws made for terrorists and sex offenders to criminalise musicians who sing violent lyrics”, the duo say on the page set up for the petition. “It means that the police no longer have to prove any link between an artist and a specific act of violence to secure a conviction for ‘inciting violence’. This is a threat to freedom of speech. Nobody in a free society should be imprisoned for words”.

“Let’s not forget that before the police spotlight was turned on drill, it was focused on road rap, grime and garage”, Konan writes in an article for The Guardian. “The controversial 696 live music risk-assessment form was accused of disproportionately stifling youth and black music culture since it was introduced in 2005 until it was finally scrapped in 2017”.

“The police trying to censor young, black, working-class British kids is nothing new”, he goes on. “Rather than attempt to talk to young people caught in a cycle of violence, they talk to each other and decide among themselves what’s best”.

“They see black kids running around stabbing each other and, rather than try to understand the root of the problem – the actual cause – the kneejerk reaction has been to ban their music, their expression, the very thing helping them leave this environment”, he continues.

“I don’t think the police understand that criminals don’t make music”, he concludes. “You make music to leave the criminal life behind, so focusing your efforts on the musicians is pointless. The problem isn’t with the music, it’s with the issues that the music is expressing. It’s like looking at the symptom while totally ignoring the cause”.

You can sign the petition, calling on police to stop using the Serious Crime Act to silence drill artists, here.

Alongside the petition they’ve released a new track and short film, titled ‘Ban Drill’: