Mariah Parker, a 26-year-old doctoral student at the University of Georgia who also records and performs as the rapper Lingua Franca, has won a seat on Athens-Clarke County’s commission, where she’ll represent District 2.
Parker, a far-left progressive who won by only 13 votes, immediately stirred up controversy by refusing to be sworn in with her right hand on the Bible, instead demanding the Autobiography of Malcolm X for that purpose, on which she placed her left hand. She also raised her right hand not in an upright open position but in a clenched fist.
Since moving to Athens in 2014, Parker has promoted and performed at numerous hip-hop events there, increasingly involving politics. She released her debut album, Model Minority, last year.