Snoop promises to give back to Jamaica… Despite criticism, some locals defend the US rapper
Snoop Lion (formerly Snoop Dogg), (R)Ibo Cooper
Members of the Rastafarian community have criticised
Snoop Lion (formerly Snoop Dogg), alleging that the rapper turned reggae
artiste is not sincere in his conversion to the Rastafarian movement.
According to the anti-Snoop Lion Rastafarians, the
hip-hop icon has failed to meet the contractual, moral and verbal
commitments of the Rastafarian community.
The questions about Snoop Lion’s authenticity became a concern to
some Rastafarians after the rapper released a premiere of his upcoming
documentary called Reincarnated, which depicts his conversion to
Rastafarianism. However, members of the Rastafarian community in Jamaica
allege that Snoop Lion is only
seeking to make a profit off the Rastafarian culture.
According to Rastafarian and former member of the Third World
band, Michael ‘Ibo’ Cooper, who has been a member of the Rastafarian
community since 1972, Snoop Lion should not be judged by other humans,
because the Almighty is the ultimate judge. He also questioned the need
for a Rastafarian contract.
“I don’t know of people having financial contract to the
Almighty. The only person who Snoop has to answer to is the Almighty and
I say that without apology. We are a post-Christ philosophy so we can’t
judge people. As a matter of fact, some of his very critics are not
living the required life either. So I don’t think we should be judging
others. We must allow man and woman to embrace consciousness,” Ibo said.
He also shared a lesson he learnt from Bob Marley with The STAR.
“I asked Bob Marley once what he thought about some Rastas who were
wearing the colours but were not true to the movement, and Bob Marley
said to me, ‘At least the consciousness a touch dem’, so that is one of
the reason I respect Bob, so in this case at least the consciousness is
touching Snoop Lion,” Ibo Cooper said.
“If Snoop tries to manipulate the Almighty he will find himself
in problems with the Almighty. But not in the court of man or having to
pay a fine, no sah. That is between Snoop and the Almighty, I cyah judge
no man. I embrace Snoop as a brother, but if him nuh sincere that is
his and the Almighty business,” Ibo Cooper concluded.
Rohan Marley also came to Snoop Lion’s defence in an interview
with international website TMZ. According to Rohan, Bob Marley would not
have supported the criticisms aimed at the rap icon.
“Our father’s name should not even be mentioned in this issue
because, like a true Rasta, he would have embraced Snoop’s reincarnation
and welcomed the positivity; why condemn a man for his love of
Rastafari and Bob Marley? We have been cool with Snoop before his
transformation and he will continue to have our blessings and support,”
Rohan Marley said.
In an interview with MTV host Sway Calloway, during the Reincarnated
documentary press conference in 2012, Snoop Lion revealed that he would
give back to Jamaica by initiating developmental projects in 2013.
“One thing about the people of Jamaica, they are not lazy, and if
you give them the opportunity they will make it happen,” Snoop said.
Snoop Lion hinted that two development projects will be executed by his team in Tivoli Gardens and Trench Town in 2013.
Snoop Lion recently returned to Jamaica where he shot the official video for his single, Lighters Up, featuring dancehall artistes Popcaan and Mavado. He is also promoting the new web series, Noisy Jamaica, a 10-part web series exploring the nuances of dancehall music and culture which debuted last Tuesday.
Also featured in the Reincarnated documentary is reggae icon Bunny Wailer.