"You're already the leaders of the world, and it's frighteningfolks in power," the Nation of Islam leader told the audience at theHip-Hop Summit, a gathering of more than 300 rap artists and executives at the HiltonHotel in Manhattan.
"Today you have come to a position of power," he said in hisfirst New York appearance since fighting prostate cancer. "All over theworld, the youth are being moved by you.
"You've taken the children of the rich," Farrakhan told theartists, who included hip-hop luminaries L.L. Cool J, Wyclef Jean, FatJoe and Sean "Puffy" Combs.
This is why there is legislation being considered to limitlyricists' free reign, he said.
Farrakhan said those in power are asking, "How do we get ourchildren back?"
But with this power, he said, comes responsibility - a theme ofthe historic gathering organized by producer Russell Simmons.
Farrakhan preached that it's time rappers used their art toenlighten the masses instead of lacing lyrics with profanity and wordsthat denigrate women.
"This community has the strength, but what the community needsmost of all is guidance," he said.
Farrakhan got a standing ovation after his two-hour-plusspeech.
Combs said, "I loved it."
Redman, a hard-core rapper, also praised Farrakhan's words, butsaid his directions will be tough to follow.
"We all know what he's talking about. He's absolutely right,"Redman said.
"But it's hard to do. Those who preach in rap, don't make nomoney. Negativity lives in rap. That's what it's built on. That's wherethe money circulates and generates from - negativity."