Marathon Rapathon Against Gun Violence

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By Alice Kenny

Rappers, fans of rap and all who oppose gun violence packed the Catholic Charities Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Center for a 12-hour nonstop Rapathon on April 6.

“Put your guns down: go to peace side up,” marchers chanted as they joined the End Gun Violence Rapathon.

The Rapathon was open to anyone with a love for Hip Hop, a determination to end gun violence and – the tricky part – the ability to rhyme for 90 seconds straight without cursing.

The community event showcased talented Emcees focused on helping change the current culture of gun violence.  Sponsored by the Hip Hop Culture Center in Harlem, it supported Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E., an organization of mothers and fathers who lost children to gun violence.

“We can’t bring our kids back but we can certainly try to help another mother and another mother’s child by doing prevention and education,” says organization cofounder Jackie Rowe Adams.

Rapper Homeboy Sandman offered a sample. “Five weeks you were alive,” he rapped.  “Had full curly hair; big beautiful eyes.”

Ms. Adams, unfortunately, knows firsthand what this type of loss feels like.

“I’ve lost two kids to gun violence,” she said.  “The pain never goes away.”

For more information:

  • Contact Catholic Charities Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Center at 212-862-6401.
  • Check out Harlem Mothers Save.

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