The State of Maryland may soon join Texas in censorsing musicians via divesting state owned stocks in record labels. On August 8 members of The Maryland State Pension Fund will meet with record company executives to discuss this issue.
The state pension fund reportedly has $56 million invested in EMI, Seagrams, and Time Warner. One Pension fund trustee was quoted as saying, "We cannot sit idly by and allow a company in which we are a shareholder to profit from offensive corporate behavior."
In February, C.Delores Tucker addressed the Maryland House
Appropriations Committee in support of divesting the stock funds. Tucker told the committee, "These corporations must know that money in these funds cannot be used to destroy the future that retirees worked so hard to achieve." What ever this statement has to do with music is beyond us, but most people have a hard time making sense out of anything that spews from the mouth of C. Delores.
Maryland Delegate Talmadge Branch, on the other hand. claims that he is "worried sick" that his grandchildren are going to hear some of these lyrics. Short of locking them up in a solitary sound-proof room until they are 18 years old, I don't think divesting state stock is going to save them.
Unlike the recent passed law in Texas, if the Maryland State Pension Fund does decide to pull their money out of certain companies it will not have to be voted on by the Maryland legislature. According to reports the Maryland pension directors can act on "their own initiative." We'll keep you posted as to what initiative they choose to take following the August 8 meeting.