Nelly not responsible for fan reactions

By Kimberly Marion

Nelly? Controversial? The Rev. Adrian Rodgers thinks he is. He feels Nelly’s lyrical content is detrimental to the Jonesboro, Ark. community.

A concert by Nelly is being held March 12 at Arkansas State University. About 5,500 tickets have been sold, according to Rodgers thinks the thousands of ticket holders should rip up their tickets and protest Nelly’s performance.

Does anyone see a problem with this resolution? Who is willing to rip up tickets they purchased to appease a reverend’s request? No one.

My second objection is: How would Rodgers know what Nelly’s lyrical content is unless he has listened to his CDs? Most of Nelly’s singles from his Sweat and Suite records actually have been the antithesis of how Rodgers describes Nelly’s music.

Rodgers told he first heard news about Nelly from a concerned parent. Well, I think the concerned parent should take up his or her concern with his or her child instead of letting Rodgers decide what is good for other people’s children.

I would also like to point out that the concert will be held on a college campus. This is a place where various cultures should be experienced. I assume the majority of the attendees to Nelly’s concert are college students who are able to think for themselves.

Rodgers and 19 other ministers felt Nelly’s concert would cause problems for Jonesboro. However, a cancellation of Nelly’s concert could cause many more problems. I believe Rodgers is entitled to his own opinion, but he and the other ministers do not realize the complications that may arise if there is a protest.

People have the right to attend a concert they have paid for. Tim Dean, director of the concert venue, said, “It would appear that with ticket sales over 5,000, many others have expressed their right to find Nelly’s music entertaining and worth spending their time and money on.” There is nothing Nelly or the venue promoters have done that makes this concert illegal. The venue holds only 6,500 people.

I think the church should care about its community, but if someone disagrees with something, he or she should not partake in the activity. If anything, the publicity generated by Rodgers’ protest could boost the sales of concert tickets.

Nelly is responsible for his lyrics, but he is not responsible for parenting children that are not his own. It is the parents’ responsibility to know what their children do and what their children listen to. That is part of the problem. There are some people who want to point a finger at the media but refuse to point the finger at themselves.

There will always be controversy when it comes to music, television and film. There are always those artists who are willing to push the envelope. Elvis, Little Richard, Tupac and Madonna have all provoked some kind of controversy, but they also provided a progression in music.

And as for Nelly, welcome to Northern Illinois University tomorrow.

Columns reflect the opinion of the author and not necessarily that of the Northern Star staff.