Teachers Union Rejects Candidate Over UGK Affiliation

Byron Amos' appearance in several rap videos is causing controversy in ATL.

Posted: 09/10/2011 10:55 AM EDT

A powerful Atlanta teachers union has withdrawn its support for school-board candidate after discovering he was the vice president of UGK Records.

According to Allhiphop.com, the Atlanta Federation of Teachers had endorsed Byron Amos' school board bid, but drew it back after learning of his appearance in several raunchy rap videos featuring scantily clad women, curse words and drug use—including one honoring the late MC-producer Pimp C, one half of the legendary Texas gangsta rap duo UGK.

"For him to actually want to run for the board and say that he cares about children, when what he's doing is using this music to do the worst for our children, it's like robbing them and killing them. It's like cheating for them," Shawnna Hayes Tavarez, president of Southwest Northwest Atlanta Parents and Partners for Schools, told CBS Atlanta. “We need someone who is upright and who the children can look up to as a role model, not someone who says, ‘Well, if our board member thinks it's OK to smoke a joint or a crack pipe...’ Because even if he's not doing it, he is saying it's OK by virtue of being involved in this process."

Amos insisted he didn't know the "disturbing" videos had been made public. “Let me apologize to the voters of District 2 because with all of the concerns, all of the problems we have in District 2, some have wanted to make this election about me,” he said. “I am still the person able to do the job, to protect the kids and move the school system forward,”

Atlanta Federation of Teachers President Verdaillia Turner, however, defended Amos. "Mr. Amos stood out as the only candidate with children in Atlanta Public Schools. He's been very actively engaged," she said.

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