Rocker Kid Rock is set to receive the Detroit branch of the NAACP's Great Expectations Award at this year's annual fundraiser dinner, but many supporters aren't happy with the selection and plan to boycott.
Many longtime supporters say the eccentric rap/rocker doesn't represent the civil rights group's mission and plan to avoid the May 1 fundraiser.
Those that oppose are mainly sighting Rock's use of Confederate flags during his live stage performances.
The rocker has cited in the past the use of the Rebel flag stands for, “Southern Rock N Roll.”
"It's a slap in the face for anyone who fought for civil rights in this country," Adolph Mongo, a longtime political consultant and head of Detroiters for Progress, tells the Detroit News. "It's a symbol of hatred and bigotry."
Donnell R. White, interim executive director of the Detroit Branch NAACP defended their honoring of Kid Rock in a statement that reads:
"Kid Rock ... has consistently lifted up the Great Expectations of many persons … concerning the future of the city."
Kid Rock has yet to comment.
In related news, the NAACP is also being criticized by a number of groups over Friday night's 42nd Annual NAACP Image Awards lineup, which includes rappers, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Nicky Minaj and Diddy-Dirty Money.
Rev. Delman Coates, senior pastor of the Mt. Ennon Baptist Church in Clinton, Maryland and his group, the Enough is Enough Campaign for Corporate Responsibility in Entertainment have protested lyrical content that glorifies or promotes violence. They have their sites set on the Image awards.
"It is unconscionable that the NAACP would sully its brand, squander its legacy, and take such a stand contrary to the aspirations and dreams of the mainstream of the African-American community," says Coates of the lineup.
Joe Brown, president of the NAACP's Pasadena-branch feels likewise and hopes the opposition will cause changes in the organization.
"I think the national office is going to review the policy of the nominees and the participants," says Brown. "Hopefully this will eliminate inviting those whose lyrics are considered disdainful."
NAACP officials have yet to comment on the lineup selection of the featured performers but defended the nominations in a statement:
"The nominees and the winners are selected by NAACP members. It's a democratic process."
Rev. Coates still is not buying it.
"While artists are free to produce their own art, it is not acceptable for public corporations and established civil right organizations to sanction the kinds of lyrics promoted by some of these artists."