San Diego Union Tribune Article - June 29, 1997

Added June 30, 1997

This article was emailed to me by Jason.

"Misguided Texas Law May Still The Music"
by George Varga

Thanks to government hypocrisy in the state of Texas, albums by artists as varied as The Beatles, Johnny Cash, and BB King could soon create financial headaches for the record companies that distribute them. On June 20, Texas Gov. George W. Bush signed a new law that may have a chilling effect on popular music specifically and artistic expression in general. It prohibits the state of Texas and all its agencies from investing in any companies that distribute music with lyrics that are sexually expilicit or promote violence.

Consequently, The Beatles' "With a Little Help From My Friends", Cash's "Folsom Prison" and King's "Paying the Cost to be the Boss" are just a few of the many songs that might get caught in a legal imbroglio in Texas. Ditto Kenny Rogers & The First Edition's "Ruby Don't Take Your Love to Town" (which advocates the murder of a cheating wife), Chuck Berry's "Reelin' and Rockin' " (indiscriminate sex), Tori Amos' "Silent All These Years" (which describes her own rape) and the Crystals' "He Hit Me (And It Felt Like a Kiss)". The Texas Law, which does not go into effect until next year, is the first of its kind to be passed in the nation, following unsuccessful efforts in Maryland. It is the brainchild of Texas Republican State Sen. Bill Ratliff, who quietly had his previosly unsuccessful bill attached as a rider to the state budget.

Purportedly targeted at gangsta rap, Ratcliff's divestiture law prohibits any Texas state money from being invested in businesses that own 10 percent or more of any company that earns income from music that advocates or merely describes any of the following: violence, degredation of women, illegal drug abuse, assault of police officers, bestiality, necrophilia, pedophilia, and street gangs.

The article then goes on to mailny talk about gangsta rap and parental responsibilities.......

It's sad that this has to occur after the Supreme Court passes the decision on the Communications Decency Act.....

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