In the wake of Jay-Z's new album 4:44 being released there has been a lot of discussion about his past material and it highlighting drug trafficking and violence.
The argument being made is that while Jay-Z may have been more politically and socially thoughtful with this album, his past material had done the community iirreparable harm. and thus his current efforts fall short of the mark..
With that in mind, its reasonable to conclude that whats being suggested is that rap artists who have flooded the community with certain types of material have had a negative transformative effect on the community..
The question at hand is how much of an impact has past Jay-Z albums had on the community in comparison to the huge amount of gangsta/mobb/ Hood tale type of movies??
Do we and should we hold actors like: Al Pacino (Scarface, Carlito's Way ) Wesly Snipes (New Jack City) Christopher Walken (King of New York) Laurence Fishbourne ( Hoodlum, Deep Cover), James Olmos (Blood In Blood Out) Mekhi Phifer (Paid in Full, Clockers) and Lorenz Tate (Menance to Society) for the gangster roles they played in the aforementioned movies, that are often immortalized in rap songs??
Do we look at the roles movies like Scarface, New Jack City and more recently TV shows like The Wire and now Power have had in influencing folks in our community?
How many folks aspired to be Nino Brown, Frank White, Stringer Bell, Marlo, Azie Faison, Ghost or Tommy? What responsibility do we put on actors on take on those bigger than life roles??
If folks in 2017 are being told to dismiss Jay-Z are calls being made to dismiss Omari Hardwick? If we are holding rappers feet to the fire for the words they write, are we holding actors feet to the fire for the roles they play? Are we on the dome of directors from John Singleton to the Hughes Brothers for the projects they put out? After all all at the end of the day we are looking at the influence of the entertainment business..aren't we?
We know that 40 years after the fact movies like Superfly and The Mack still influence rappers today.. One might be hard pressed to recall albums that came out at the time of those movies?
At the end of the day we are also talking about people's attraction to power and economic ascension even if its short lived. Whose zooming who? Who and what is really informing us?
s/o Hakim Green Michael McBride Dawn-Elissa Fischer Jessica Ayo Nina McKinney-Alabi Tina Bell Wright Graal Swartz Shawn Granberry Leon DNas Sykes Chaney Turner Malkia Cyril
I'm out here in these streets about to beat Common's old producer Dug Infinite.. sorry southside Chicago.. this kid is about to be waxed out in a few moves.. send somebody from the Northside...Anyone else wanna get a chess whupping come hollar
Dang! Im here at a bday party and my 6 year old daughter just yelled at me... She saw her little brother holding a McDonald's cup.. she goes; Where did u get that cup?
Her brother goes: Daddy took me to McDonalds!!!
My daughter with eyes wide opened is shocked and in a loud voice; 'Daddy Why did u go to McDonalds? It's bad for you.. Mommy is gonna be mad'...
People in the parking lot are looking.. I tell her we went there so her brother could play on the slides in the little park they have...
My daughter responds in same loud voice; 'Daddy that's how they get u to go..They put a park there so all the little kids will go there and eat the bad food and drink soda.. Daddy u shouldn't go to McDonalds it's poison!
These Bay Area kids.. always kicking up dust!! thank u all u damn activists u making it hard out here in these parenting streets
It'll be interesting to see if Senator John McCain who has brain cancer and is getting the best treatment money can buy at taxpayer expense will vote against everyone else being able to have access to that same Healthcare system...
My experience is that folks who are drunk with power and married to this blistering system of White Supremacy will go to their deathbed upholding it and sadly delusional folks who will find their best interested shattered will say McCain is a hero and thus should be entitled to top shelf treatment while everyone else suffers..
Remember it was just a few weeks ago Senator McCain praised the latest GOP healthcare bill which allows states to do away with pre-existing conditions.. he said it was better than Obamacare in over 100 ways.. This is the same McCain that already had cancer thus he has what would be considered a pre-existing condition, which incidentally doesn't apply to the Senate or Congress.. I'll let that sink in for a moment
Wanna know why so many people are willing to embrace R. Kelly in spite of his horrid reputation? Its for the same type of reasons so many will cheer, show empathy and excuse someone who goes to his willing to go to his death bed voting against their interests..
Everywhere u go it's the same old song..What's troubling is you have here in this country folks with Black and Brown skin taking the same position as these far right wing racist who wanna turn back and demonize folks escaping hardships on their respective homes...
The face of immigration changes from country to country and region to region..and state to state... sometimes it's African sometimes it's Arab sometimes it's Latino or Southeast Asian...
Very few want to leave home but many have to because of policies applied to them by our country on our watch...
It's troublesome to see the oppressed embrace the politics, language and attitudinal biases of the oppressor..
The Vapors of this are still all to pungent, and so when a genuine unfettered Strategic vision, is conceived, emerging from the marginalized nether region of a distorted Black radical tradition, a perception and strategic vision that ignores or refuses to consider burnishing the "influence" the Old Black comprador class pimps (that they portray as "power"), and one that simultaneously challenges the deceptions and distortions of what today constitutes "resistance" as typified by the emerging New, and improved Black Comprador class, what would the Gatekeepers do? How will the Entertainment Moguls entertain and still get paid? The teetering old capitalist system of unbridled Wealth accumulation established by the progeny of those elites positioned to benefit from it, is in a severe crisis, a new global paradigm of collaborating trans-national elites, their political control of the "nation-state" model of government, and their Directorship of Corporate organization of Commerce, Banking etc. means that the wealthy elites among Blacks and Africans who choose the side of the Barricades manned by the minions of Goldman & Sachs, G20, and a fiat based banking system based on a paper IOU called the "dollar" are destined to be stripped of both privilege and wealth just like the rest of us living from pay-check to pay-check pretending we are not "citizens" of the empire, fiendishly stacking paper printed by a Government franchised Bank as if its actual freedom and power. Chasing ghetto fabulous consumer driven delusions of fame, fortune, and our Right to Party. So Pascal Robert made good a observation 4 years ago that is just as applicable now, and the rhetorical "what if" this hadn't happen is an abstract exercise waiting for a future time and place to happen. Sometime in deep brooding I'm convinced that the class delusional outer Black body experience of the Obama presidency was the most psychologically devastating event to befall African-Americans since the compromise of Reconstruction that ushered in a century of White supremacist terrorism and a Neo-feudal system of "Sharecropping" across the defeated confederacy. That historical trauma evolved into mass incarceration of surplus Black labor as the victory of the North in the Civil War led to industrial growth, urbanization, and territorial expansion, and mass migration to cities where wage slavery proved economically a superior mode of exploitation of human labor than the agricultural based system of Black and migrant serfdom. All this and more were influenced by the white supremacist compromise termed "Reconstruction". After the psycho-trauma of Obama era induced "Residual Black Absentee Mentality". In this period of Technological revolution thats transforming how humans socialize, communicate, work, play, and yes kill each other, it seems the worse is yet to come. Yeah Davey, white folks are contriving while we should insure our surviving
Wonder which Kap, Michael Vick would prefer that would make America feel comfortable? We know he don't like Afro Kap.. Maybe he can get with Tattoo Kap.. Here Kap has Bible verses vs Thug Life..
Maybe he wants Corn Row Kap.. it's similar to the braids Mike Vick once had..
Maybe it's Bushy Haired Kap? Then again maybe not bc..It makes him look Middle Eastern.. and Trump don't like our Middle Eastern brethren..
Maybe Mike Vick likes baseball hat Kap.. but only if the hat is on straight?? perhaps short hair Kap might work??
When folks initially expressed concern about this bike program there were some of y'all caping for it big time, as if folks were uninformed about the intentions behind this...Some were comparing this to New York City and Washington DC overlooking the fact that these bike programs are damn near non existence in places where folks need them most in those cities.. ie Ain't no bike share kiosk in my old neighborhood in the Bronx, but the way folks were talking was like it was the be all end all thing because they had great experiences as a tourist in those aforementioned cities..
So in other words one got to bike up and down Manhattan one of the most expensive places in the world to live..which is an incredible transit hub..but start going to the East Oakland equivalent in places like my old Bronx neighborhood, you gonna find the same scenario.. Poor folks left out in the cold while newcomers are touting what a great thing this is.. Same song all around the world..
This is on top of the fact that many of us recall when police were issuing out tickets left and right for folks biking around the town for little things like not signaling or coming to a full stop or being accused of selling dope, because up till recently the perception was the only people riding bikes in Oakland were drug dealers.. Now its all good. Now everyone is welcoming. Now we want biking around the Lake.. This is a gentry thing designed for the ease and comfort of the newly minted rich transplants... and while a few of us including myself can easily take advantage of this because we are in proximity or have economic means does not mean its right or this is being done for all the benevolent reasons being touted..
At first I thought I was off the hook.. I hadn't seen them in a while, at least a good 8 or 9 months...So like Mac Dre I was feeling myself..
I started leaving half eaten strawberrys and melon rinds on my kitchen counter.. I figured the intense heat, a Trump presidency and my willingness to let several spiders see up shop in the kitchen, meant I would not see them..
But alas them is back!! The muthafucka----ken punk ass fruit flies are back.. They're back and I'm Mad as hell!
All fruit flies Must Die
I did a gig last week where the host was clear in asking that I not play R Kelly.. I usually don't, but in this gig a number of folks were really adamant about me playing his tunes.. One got upset and stormed off, talking about people are always doing the brother wrong...
This past weekend I did a wedding where the host requested that R Kelly not be played.. Again folks requested but the message was clear..He was not gonna be a part of the celebration.. Step in Name of Love, Happy People, Home Alone etc were banished.. Folks had a good time with out him...
Perhaps it's time more folks take similar stances against these problematic artists..
The coldest place we went in Alaska: Barrow. It's on the north coast, looking out toward the Beaufort Sea, well inside the Arctic Circle. Standard attire for the Barrow section of the trip: long johns + thick trousers + waterproof trousers; thermal shirt + fleecy pullover + fleecy vest + windproof anorak. And did I mention that it's summertime up there?
I'm so glad I went there. It's unlike anywhere I've ever been. The pack ice was still right up to the shoreline. There are no trees, and I didn't see any regular grass - only soggy sphagnum-moss-like tundra. The community has a huge problem with garbage because it's hard to dispose of in a place so isolated, where the ground is frozen solid most of the year. Everything has to be flown in, and food is expensive.
We missed a polar bear by two days. Locals said it was seen at the gas station. We thought that meant the bear was at the gas station (What to buy in Myanmar
?) but they meant people at the gas station saw the bear on the ice. It had left the area by the time we got there :(
I think this write up below from former Black Panther and political prisoner Dhoruba Bin-Wahad gives some historical context to Ray Lewis and other NFL players like Kordell Stewart and Mike Vick...
Keep in mind we rarely see litmus tests around players who have raped and committed sexual assault and domestic violence..
Nor have we seen litmus tests placed on players of other hues who express their politics like all-American Tom Brady and former NFL coach and father of current 49er coach Mike Shanahan who is an avid Trump supporter talking about he's the leadership America needs..No one gave him a litmus test or blinked an eye when he presented former president George Bush a Bronco's jersey back in the day during a game..
This is not about Kap getting a job... This is a line in the sand about policing Black folks and limiting political expression.. You cant see the Colin Kapernick situation without looking at other political actions like the law AIPC is pushing Congress to pass to make it a felony to support a boycott of Israel over their treatment of Palestinians..
You can't view this Kaepernick situation without looking at all the stateside legislation being proposed to criminalize protests. Much of this was in response to Black Lives Matter actions over the past couple of years
You can't view this Kap situation without looking at all the proposed legislation backed by the current Presidential administration to allow Hate speech on campus under the guise of Free speech while punishing those who attempt to quell it.. In other words its ok to wave a Nazi flag which is what we saw here in Berkeley and call it 'free speech', but take knee during the national anthem and all hell breaks lose..
We can't look at this Kap situation and ignore the fact that police unions all over the country are pushing for legislation to make them a protected class of people and thus speaking out against them could be considered hate speech and attached to enhancing any charges brought against you.. The most notable effort around this happened last year in New York.
Here's what Dhoruba wrote below..
<White folks in charge of organized sports figured him out when his simplistic ass first showed up - so did Law enforcement when he flipped the script on his homeys and snitched and sniffled from up under a murder beef.
That on the field inspirational role playing he did with the Ravens is what the favored Gladiators used to do in Arenas of Ancient Rome to please their masters. It endeared him to every rich White Capitalist club owner who ever wanted a Negro champion behind which to conceal their racism.
Chumps like Lewis always go all in on anyone that stands for something other than a paycheck. He's one reason I despise the Ravens - they hyped that knuckle head up and gave him an audience.>> Dhoruba Bin Wahad
Tonite it's going down at The Miranda (1739 Bdway) in downtown Oakland... the homie Tarik Kazaleh will serving up drinks.. yours truly will be serving up beats.. Roll thru
S/o Jennifer Johns Jeff Perlstein Aaron Miller Dug Infinite Dame Drummer Kim Caldwell Ben McBride Monica Toothman-Johnson W. Kamau Bell Aima Paule Falilah Aisha Bilal
This is pretty serious and to be honest because of the substantially decreased numbers of African Americans on many college campus, I'm willing to bet while many will hear the words Affirmative Action and think Black people, I think this move will target Asians and women and will highlight instance of Immigrant and undocumented folks to get the public worked up...
Sadly I also think this is another distraction for more insidious policies like the ones being proposed to make protest felonies and to protect hate speech... while giving banks more powers to go after those who took out and owe loans..
Gonna be throwing down on the decks this Thursday at the Miranda... (1739 Bdway) .. come grab a drink, have good convo, let loose and vibe to some serious audio delights.. we kick off at 9..
s/o Lateefah Simon Lasana Hotep Layidua Salazar Dani Ahuicapahtzin Cornejo Harry Louis Williams Bijou M. Kream Sarah Allen Kim Bardakian Chaney Turner W. Kamau Bell Pendarvis Harshaw Rahman Jamaal Mc Lulu Arias Valdez Aimee Allison Leon DNas Sykes Steve Snider Emily Butterfly Monica Espiritu Henry Mobley Tarah Fleming Karl Welch Darryl Dunn Ryan Austin
While we all laughing at the Hunger Games style drama at the White House look at the laws both Democrats and Republicans are trying to pass.. they wanna make it a felony if u support a boycott on Israel.. How long before it's a felony to protest police???
South Belfast MP Emma Little Pengelly defends in today's Irish News the burning of effigies and flags on bonfires.. Referring to the Fuck the DUP banner on the London LGBTQ pride march Emma Little Pengelly it is not the same attacking others peoples culture and personally attacking individuals..The Banner on London Pride was a Democratic statement ..Burning things on bonfire is an act of fascism and has caused personal hurt to some communities and to some citizens ..I have no issue with bonfires i do have issues with whats being burned on them as it my culture and my communities culture and identity ..I am glad i am not like some unionists bigoted narrow minded revisionist and reactionary ...Being Democratic is about respecting all communities culture and identity a freedom of expression is not about something you fail to reach out to and fail to understand..
As a queer one can not understand the fact that king billy was Gay.. ..As a fenian one can't understand how he was blessed by the pope ..Revisionism is a horrible thing ..As Homophobia sectarianism and reactionary triumphalism and ultra right wing ideals is marching today across the North of Ireland .. All one can say is..Up the Rebels ..
Across the North of Ireland tonight reactionary bigotry will be in full swing..Everything from Irish National flags and religious symbols ,flags from other countries and LGBTQ rainbow flags and every other identity they fail to understand and reach out to will be put on bonfires and burned and they say this is culture ..People tonight should stay calm and Collective ..Citizens stay safe and respect your community..Bigotry and hate shall not win ..Fear must never stop diversity..They fear Equality and Liberty they fear diversity ..They have nothing to fear but their own hate and bigotry..They say they the 12th is about religious liberty then why attack other peoples faith ..They say they believe in Democracy then why attack another communities democratic beliefs and their identity.. Culture and equality should be embraced not burnt on bonfires ..
I will always speak out against regression and repression ..My activism and ideals come from radical politics as does my queerness ..I don't desire to stay silent to fit in ..I don't desire to be stay silent to be liked ..Police repression against LGBTQ people still happens police forces around the world still jail and murder Gay people..My solidarity is with all standing up against repression and regression .. I don't want to be tolerated by society i want to be accepted by society..Populism and elitism can never stand in the way of idealism .. I believe in Liberty ,Eqaulity and fraternity ..I believe in Solidarity local and international ..I can never be an apologist for them upholding unjust laws inequality and abuses of civil liberty with guns batons and shields ..