Hip-Hop Consortium decides ‘Ill’ means ‘Ill’ again.

COMPTON, Calif. (AP)—A statement released today from the International Hip-Hop Consortium (IHHC) has announced the retirement of the hip-hop term “ill,” putting it back into common usage.

Throughout the last quarter-century, “ill” was synonymous with “cool,” “fresh” and “tight,” its medical definition left unused.

After dropping out of common usage in the mid-nineties, the official discontinuation of “ill” came from some of the rappers who helped popularize the term.

Says Run of Run DMC, “After [Jam Master] Jay was killed, I wanted to tell people how ill I felt, but if I used the word ‘ill,’ no one would understand me. But when I say now that I’m illin’, I mean it.”

Younger rappers welcome the IHHC’s decision. “I never use ‘ill,’” says 50 Cent. “I guess it’s what puts the ‘old’ in ‘old school’; they keep talking about their health.”

Some veteran rap stars are upset with the change. Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz of the Beastie Boys claims that the confusion resulting from the retirement will cause more harm than good. “We [The Beastie Boys] have two albums with the word in the title. After the change, will people look at License to Ill and think it’s a James Bond typo?” Horovitz also expresses concern that rap listeners may begin to consider him the most virulent person in an area spanning from Brooklyn, New York to Gardena, Calif.

Other hip-hop terms in consideration for retirement by the IHHC are “def,” “word” and Big Daddy Kane.

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