Rapper-turned-country singer Jelly Roll spoke about the importance of prioritizing the fentanyl crisis at a Senate hearing on Thursday.
The musician, whose real name is Jason DeFord, testified before the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, chaired by Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio.
Jelly Roll urged Congress to pass Brown’s Fentanyl Eradication and Narcotics Deterrence (FEND) Off Fentanyl Act, which would wield financial sanctions against drug traffickers to disrupt the flow of opioids coming in from China and Mexico.
Jelly Roll, who from the age of 14 spent 10 years in and out of detention facilities for drug dealing and other crimes, said he was part of the problem but now wants to be part of the solution.
“I brought my community down. I hurt people,” he testified. “I was the uneducated man in the kitchen playing chemists with drugs I knew absolutely nothing about, just like these drug dealers are doing right now when they’re mixing every drug on the market with fentanyl. And they’re killing the people we love.”