New Orleans activist announces mayoral run with rap video

The three-day sign-up period for New Orleans’ 2017 mayoral race kicked off today, and that means new contenders have started announcing their runs. These types of announcements are often predictable affairs, so some creativity can go a long way toward helping a candidate rise above the fray. That’s visual artist and community activity Charles O. Anderson’s plan, anyway.

Anderson, who has worked with programs like CeaseFire New Orleans to reduce gun violence in the city, announced his mayoral run with a rap video. The production finds him donning a variety of colorful suits while spitting lines like, “Four years / no more tears / that’s the plan / I know you hear.”

While the whole thing may seem a bit ridiculous, that’s exactly what Anderson is going for. The video ends with the activist admitting that he knows he can’t rap, but that he chose to do so because he wanted to grab people’s attention. His website also offers a proposal for reducing violent crimes by implementing policies based on the CeaseFire model.

“I released this video not because I think I can rap or I want to be a rap artist, but because I wanted to ensure that my mayoral bid and more importantly the cause gets the attention of the whole city,” Anderson says in the YouTube video’s description. “I will do anything to make sure that we stop the shootings and killings.”

“Over the last 10 years I have organized hundreds of marches, vigils and art shows,” Anderson adds in the description. “I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with hundreds of youth and young adults. Through those interactions, I realized one thing the conflicts that cause these murders can be resolved. Gun violence can be stopped.”