Politico reports that President Obama will hold a basketball tournament with a number of NBA players past and present. Among them are Michael Jordan, who has apparently given up on being a popular non-political sports icon, and Patrick Ewing.
Carmelo Anthony will also be a featured guest at Obama’s fundraiser.
Anthony, who is currently on the US men’s Olympic basketball team in London, became notorious for helping deliver a pro-violence and pro-drug dealer message in 2004.
At the time, Anthony was playing for the Denver Nuggets. His hometown, Baltimore, MD, was wracked by drug violence. Open-air drug markets had become a feature of everyday life in parts of the city, the murder rate was sky high and authorities tried to get on top of the problem by developing informants who would finger drug kingpins.
But in late 2004, a DVD started circulating on Baltimore’s streets. That DVD was titled “Stop Snitching,” and it was intended as a threat to anyone who dared help police deal with drug violence.
The DVD is called “Stop Snitching” and shows alleged drug dealers talking about what happens to people who cooperate with the police, and Anthony is standing next to one of them. He is also seen on the DVD talking about his Olympic bronze medal and saying that he threw it in a lake. The man he stands next to later goes on to tell how he would take care of snitches by “putting a hole in their head.” However, Anthony does not appear to be taking part in that portion of the discussion.
In one segment, Anthony stands on a street, wearing a red shirt and baseball hat and laughing while another man talks about life on the street, snitches and the NBA. Anthony, 20, doesn’t respond to any of the comments about violence, except to laugh. The credits of the DVD include a special thanks to “Melo,” Anthony’s nickname.The DVD is produced by an alleged drug dealer named Skinny Shuge.
Melo’s defense? He didn’t know that anyone would ever see the “Stop Snitching” video.
I lived in Baltimore when “Stop Snitching” hit the streets. It terrified law-abiding citizens, and Melo’s presence on the video sent a strong signal that he associated with the hard core gangsters who were tearing his hometown apart.