Before the November 2016 general election, Snoop Dogg had already become an outspoken critic of Donald Trump and his campaign for president. That criticism continued after the election. But the Dogg’s new album Make America Crip Again takes the legendary rapper’s high-profile stance against President Trump to the next level. Snoop’s new eight-track record doesn’t just flip the Donald’s infamous campaign slogan on its head. It also features a Trump corpse album cover. On it, a body lies on a gurney, covered in the American flag and adorned with a toe-tag reading “TRUMP.”
Snoop Dogg’s Trump Corpse Album Cover Stirs Up Controversy
Featuring guest artists like Chris Brown and O.T. Genasis, Snoop Dogg‘s EP Make America Crip Again dropped on October 27.
Before the release date, two singles, including the title track “M.A.C.A” came out on Soundcloud back in August.
The album, which not only references Trump’s campaign slogan but also depicts Snoop standing over the stars-and-stripes-swaddled corpse of Donald Trump, has created a firestorm of controversy and drawn harsh rebukes from pro-Trump media outlets.
Some critics have even reported Snoop Dogg to the Secret Service. They wonder whether the incendiary album cover should be taken as an actual threat on the president’s life.
But in a statement Rolling Stone obtained about the new record, the Doggfather downplayed the album’s politics.
“It’s not a statement or a political act: it’s just good music,” the rapper said. “Certain people feel like we should make America ‘great again,’ but that time they’re referring to always takes me back to separation and segregation so I’d rather Make America Crip Again.”
The Make America Crip Again Trump Corpse Album Cover Draws On Hip-Hop History
From a different perspective, however, Snoop Dogg’s new EP is a brilliant political statement.
The album cunningly blurs the line between art and politics. And anyone familiar with the history of hip-hop and rap music will recognize Make America Crip Again as an astute and allusive condemnation of an administration marred by bigotry, sexism and white supremacy.
Throughout the campaign and into his term, Trump has made grotesque statements and lied with a shocking lack of inhibition.
Going back just to August, when the first tracks off of Snoop’s new record dropped, Trump defended the white nationalist protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia as “very fine people.”
And this despite the fact that one of those so-called “fine people” murdered one counter-demonstrator and injured many others using his car as a weapon. But Trump dismissed this incident, citing violence “on both sides.”
Beyond that, Trump has repeatedly flaunted endorsements by neo-Nazis. He’s staffed his administration with outspoken bigots and white ethno-nationalists. And he was caught bragging about committing sexual assault.
The Trump agenda and his Twitter feed are bolstering this resurgence of violent white supremacist extremism.
And that’s exactly what Snoop Dogg’s new album wants to draw listeners’ attention to. The president’s efforts to take the U.S. back to a time of separation and segregation.
And that’s what makes Snoop’s Trump corpse album cover such a significant piece of artistic and creative expression. In essence, the album cover is a recreation of Ice Cube‘s album Death Certificate, released nearly 26 years to the day before Snoop’s new record.
On the cover of Death Certificate, Ice Cube stands over the American flag-draped corpse of Uncle Sam. Snoop’s Trump corpse album cover makes just one change, switching the “Uncle Sam” toe-tag for one reading, “Trump.”
Snoop Dogg’s New Album Flips The Script
Critics of rap music like to argue that artists like Snoop Dogg glorify gang activity and gang violence. But hip-hop and rap music, born out of the racist War on Drugs, has always pushed back against those stereotypes.
In a country with a long and enduring history of violence against black people and other peoples of color, a mythologized America of ‘freedom and justice for all’ has been a persistent target of politically conscious rap and hip-hop artists.
“When you listen to my records, there’s always been a mix of conscious records and party records and this EP continues that trend,” Snoop Dogg said in a statement.
Besides, enjoining listeners to “make America Crip again,” Snoop says the album isn’t about promoting a cycle of violence. Instead, it’s about promoting unity. In this way, Snoop’s new album offers a history lesson.
“A lot of people glorify the gang-banging and violence but forget that in the beginning, the Crip’s main and sole purpose was to be the reflection of the Black Panthers. They looked after kids, provided after-school activities, fed them and stepped in as role models and father figures,” Snoop Dogg explained.
Whatever your stance on Snoop’s controversial album cover, the rapper and celebrity icon wants his music to heal, not divide. Which is why Snoop Dogg’s latest record is a testament to the artist’s continuing relevance in popular culture.