Television icon Geraldo Rivera has sparked an open debate after taking ample shots at the hip-hop genre for its influence on society.

In Rivera’s opinion, the music genre has been very destructive over the past decade.

“Hip-hop has done more damage to black and brown people than racism in the last 10 years. When you find the youngster, a Puerto Rican from the South Bronx or a black kid from Harlem, who has succeeded in life other than being the one-tenth of one-tenth of one percent that make it in the music business, that’s been a success in life walking around with his pants around his a** or with visible tattoos.” (“Huffington Post Live”)

Check out what Rivera said about music mogul Russell Simmons on the next page…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGfgi-CpVrc

Rivera also took aim at Def Jam Records co-founder Russell Simmons.

“This whole ethos, and I love Russell Simmons – he’s a dear friend of mine, I admire his business acumen – at some point though, those guys need to cop to the fact that by encouraging this distinctive culture that is removed from the mainstream they have encouraged people to be so different from the mainstream that they can’t participate other than the racks in the garment center and those entry level jobs. I lament it; I really do. I think it’s been very destructive culturally.” (“Huffington Post Live”)

According to reports, Geraldo clashed with Russell a few years ago.

Rivera and Simmons briefly beefed in 2012 after Rivera told Fox News that Trayvon Martin made himself a target by wearing a hooded sweatshirt, adding that his clothing made him look “gangsta.” After the talk show host apologized for his distasteful statements, Simmons responded, “Geraldo, your apology is bullshit! Your apology is nothing but a defense of a racist, backward thing you already said.” (Rolling Stone)