One thing you can never call Killer Mike is typical. In a recent interview with Okayplayer.com, the rapper and activist offered some insightful answers for their series “The Questions.” The native of Atlanta, who anchored VH1’s Roc Doc on Atlanta hip-hop, spoke on being a member of the NRA, police brutality and his feelings on President Barack Obama.
“He has been the best thing for the African-American community because for years there was a ceiling that said you could only be as good as ‘this.’ You can become a billionaire, but you can’t be president,” he says in the video. “So now that that is wiped out of the way, mentally, the shackles are off. You can aim for the sky. My 12-year-old son can fathom being president, where when I was twelve I couldn’t fathom being president.”
However, KM is holding his final opinion on Number 44 until his last day in office.
“But I don’t have an official opinion on our President until I see who he pardons on the last day of his presidency,” he says. “I would like to see Assata Shakur pardoned, I would like to see Mumia Abu Jamal pardoned, I would like to see Leonard Peltier pardoned. I believe that all three of the Americans I have named have fought the good fight for all Americans, not just Americans of color or Native Americans.”
Assata Shakur, who has been the subject of several rap songs, is a civil rights activist who was convicted of killing New Jersey State Trooper Wern Foerester in 1977. She escaped prison in 1979 and has been living in Cuba in political asylum since 1984. In 2013 the FBI added her to the Most Wanted Terrorist list.
Leonard Peltier is a Native American activist and member of the American Indian Movement (AIM). He was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive terms of life imprisonment for first degree murder in the shooting of two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents during a 1975 conflict on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
Mumia Abu-Jamal, also rapped about in several songs, is a former Black Panther who was convicted of the December 1981 murder of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner. His original sentence of death, was commuted to life imprisonment without parole in December 2011.
“Those people have reached an age where it’s time they should be pardoned,” says Mike.
President George W. Bush pardoned rapper John Forte, along with thirteen others, before he left office in 2008.