Perhaps music is a lightning rod for political controversy in Miami precisely because it is no more universal than English, Spanish, or Kreyol. Spent and Carey-Shuler have selected artists not only on the basis of their ethnicity but also because many of the scheduled artists have taken a stand through their music: Sandoval, Marley, the South African Jonathan Butler, and Haitian activists Boukman Eksperyans. "They use their music to free their people," said Spent. "It wasn't just about singing a song," added Carey-Shuler. Maybe the color of your skin, where you are from, what language you speak -- and the music you hear -- do matter. In the commissioner's words: "We want people to leave with the message that diversity is our strength."