The Mexican government has put forth new legislation meant to mitigate the popularity of narcocorridos, the danceable songs that speak about drug dealers and their exploits.

Mexico's ruling National Action Party introduced legislation Jan. 20 that seeks to regulate the mass diffusion of narcocorridos or other related material - like videos or film - by requiring that they be labeled with a warning. The label is akin to what's required for tobacco, alcohol or ads for age - restricted movies and would be required only on content that calls for the commission of a crime. (It's been widely misreported that the proposal could punish artists and media executives with up to three years in prison for producing and airing narcocorridos - not true.)

Surprisingly, many in the music industry are privately hailing the action, even as they acknowledge that narcocorridos have never been as massively popular as today.

"As a label executive, I'm against any type of censure," said one record executive who, like everyone else interviewed for the piece, asked to remain anonymous, in large part due to security concerns. "But as a Mexican I totally agree with this proposal. It's reprehensible that music-which is a means of communication-is used to praise this lifestyle."

Drug-related violence in Mexico has risen in recent years, claiming the lives of popular musicians like Valentín Elizalde, who was gunned down in 2007, and Sergio Gómez, who was kidnapped, tortured and shot the same year.

And while the government's motion may not curb the violence or reduce narcocorrido production, it may heighten awareness that this isn't merely entertainment, nor should it be treated as such.

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