Reason First: Should Snitching Be a Staple in Society?
Rappers resist snitching even if they're the victim. Yet some think about going to the authorities to resolve criminal issues.
In the television series, Atlanta (2016-), Brian Tyree Henry’s character Alfred “Paper Boi” Miles receives a treatment in the second season of the series that played out similar to real life against rapper David Alex “Skinnyfromthe9” Villegas. In the TV show, Henry’s character is greeted by would-be supporters and then attacked and must flee to the forest. Villegas received a barrage of blows from someone claiming to only want a photograph with the rapper at a restaurant. The aftermath involved the rapper contemplating going to the police to solve the incident.
What this represents is the shifting attitude of Troi “Star” Torain’s “Start Snitching” campaign and has allowed up-and-coming artists to change their minds. At one time, the term snitch applied to someone involved in a criminal enterprise or activity who gets nabbed by law enforcement and spills his or her guts. Villegas remained the victim in his this case and should feel no hesitation to inform or allow his father to “call around” in seek of the assailant.
Villegas constitutes also the young rappers who have continued the trend of MC’s being jailed for offenses like shoplifting, reckless driving, and kidnapping. He has stated that he is not guilty of the latter charge. But that is not the dilemma. Because these figures have engaged themselves in criminal activities, it is difficult to show bits of sympathy towards them. If Villegas going to the police may damage his street credibility, then street credibility be damned. He should not be a “stool pigeon” or a “rat" because he wants to protect his own individual life and property. He’s not a mob boss. He’s not a gangster. He’s a vulnerable young man who encountered a violation against his person.
Now, the snitching is good for protecting family members who find themselves caught in the crosshairs, beaten down, or assaulted in any way. The responsible, adult thing to do would be to be an informer. Villegas should have to “roll over” and tell the authorities what exactly happened to him. He should know that that the attacker who went after him should be brought to justice. Villegas could set a precedent for the new generation (Gen Z) to connect with and support law enforcement. To snitch means you actually have enough courage to point out the brute or brutes who commit these heinous crimes. From the time that the brief brawl occurred, Villegas should have been “on the horn” and “dropping dimes” to sit down this animal on two legs. To snitch means that there is a mind at work ready to meet the virtues of honesty and integrity. From the perspective of today’s crop of gun holders and knife wielders, the idea that someone is a “snitch” for trying to capture the savage who started physical force is vicious. The title snitch should be a badge of honor.
It should reflect the highest in trying to mitigate the crimes which occur on these streets. Snitching is a definite sign of a man or woman who seeks to snuff out criminal activity. Again, it would be much more credible for rappers like Villegas if he shunned criminal acts prior to this latest case.
By acknowledging the fact that snitching is a virtue, Villegas and others demean themselves and stoop ever lower to the rungs of brutishness. The act of snitching should be a positive and police looked at as a force that protects and serves. Hip hop artists shouldn’t have to feel like they’re betraying anyone by telling the truth. Whatever damage that has been done over the past few decades with race relations and police should be mended with the words of a snitch.