Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Return Of The Minstrels, Part 2

When Will African Americans Reject The Poison Coming From Hip Hop?

Snoop Dogg Walking Women On Dog Leashes

Rapper Snoop Dogg Walking Black Women on Dog Leashes (like animals) on National Television

And judging by the lack of protest coming from Black women, it could easily be assumed that they were o.k. with this horrific scene. This is one of the big problems in the "Black Community"- especially the youth. They will mobilize and protest for the release of a child molester (R. Kelly), but they won't protest against the Hip Hop that is poisoning their communities, or against genocide in Darfur. Where is the Black Leadership? Where is the shame? Where is the Justice? And where is the outrage?

I'm surprised that they stuck together long enough for the recent protest against the NYPD over the shooting of Sean Bell. (although I would love to see that same energy also aimed at protesting against the Black on Black brutality that is going on in urban communities across America).

What a wonderful sight for Black youth to see. *shaking my head* These images & the negative messages that go with them, are doing more damage to the "Black community" than anyone has really been able to fully calculate. And we wonder why our women are internalizing these images? This nonsense is basically celebrated within the so-called "Black Community".

Snoop Dog was recently arrested (again) for drug charges, among other things. The latest arrest took place right after he was glorified on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Another clown who calls himself "The Game" was recently arrested for impersonating a Police officer.

Every other day one of these clowns does something stupid. In the Rap world, stupidity has become the norm. And the sad thing is, there are millions of youth in this country who want to emulate these so-called Black men.

When will this madness stop?

James Buford- President of the St. Louis Urban League, recently wrote a commentary on this issue for the St. Louis American newspaper.

James Buford

Just Say No to Gangsta Rap

Columnist James H. Buford

African-American music has always been the underlying theme of any civil rights movement. From the old Negro spirituals that were used to help deliver us from slavery to “We Shall Overcome” being the main song of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s to James Brown’s “Say it Loud (I’m Black and Proud)” anthem, our music has always motivated us to do better, achieve more and have pride in ourselves.

Strangely enough, the African-American anthem for justice has come to a screeching halt with the proliferation of rap music in our community. My problem is not with the beats, but with the damaging images and messages portrayed in gangsta rap.

Juan Williams’ point about African-American youth being destroyed by hip-hop culture is well taken in his book Enough. On too many of our airwaves, young black men and women are being depicted by their own people as nothing more than two-bit hustlers and prostitutes.

In my opinion, gangsta rappers should be compared to minstrel shows - characters like Amos ‘n Andy, Stepin Fetchit and Mammy - in that they insult our race and show stereotypes as the norm of Black America.

There has been some minor uproar about hip-hop, such as Spelman College denying Nelly a fundraising event on campus due to his dehumanizing portrayal of a woman getting a credit card run through her behind in a video. Essence magazine has also spoken out against the sexist aspects of this music. However, more needs to be done.

A scripture states that “our people perish for a lack of knowledge.” Many people think gangsta rap is harmless entertainment. They may state that most consumers of violent, sexist rap music are young white males. But even in this case it is dangerous, because the music reinforces negative stereotypes about black people. To African-American teens, gangsta rap is dangerous due to the absence of fathers and the inherent need for male role models. Promiscuous sex, violence, drugs and alcohol abuse are often glamorized in hip-hop.

A recent study published by the American Journal of Public Health stated that girls aged 14-18 who watched rap videos were three times more likely to hit a teacher, two and a half times more likely to get arrested and two times more likely to have sexual relations with multiple partners.

When you look at the effects of gangsta rap on crime, the numbers are even more staggering. The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics indicates that the popularity of gangsta rap has caused an increase in violent crime in urban areas and that interviews with offenders revealed that acts of violence were easier to commit when being stimulated by the lyrics of certain rap songs. Since 1989, one year after pioneer gangsta rap group NWA became popular, juveniles committing murder increased by 50 percent and black-on-black crime has steadily increased.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that gangsta rap is destroying the African-American community. With 70 percent of all black children being born out of wedlock, 40 percent of all African Americans living in poverty and one million black men populating our nation’s prisons, the time has come for the black community to say no to self-destructive behavior. Instead of degrading our self-image with criminal mindsets, we need to remember our rich heritage of civil rights leaders such as Harriet Tubman, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Thurgood Marshall and teach these messages to our children.

It is crucial that African-American parents monitor what their kids are listening to. Do you want your kids looking up to a gangsta rapper such as 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg or Lil’ Jon? It is truly time to march to the beat of a different drummer.

James H. Buford is president of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis.


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Part 1 of Return of the Minstrels

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

The interesting thing about snoop showing up with two black women was that, for the most part, average black American women aren't in rap videos anymore. It's Dominican, Puerto Rican, Brazilian and Cuban women that are hot in the rap industry now.

Rap is about money, not about social consciousness. That's why the rappers throw money around in the videos. It's a sign of the rampant materialism of our society. I once read a statistic that said that 85% of rap is bought by white kids. There's so much money in it that the record companies would probably care less if black people stopped buying rap records...if only that would happen.

Mario Walker said...

Can I please hear an Amen..

The Angry Independent said...

Liz,

Whites may buy a lot of it. But it's up to Blacks to stop participating in the degradation of their own race. If Blacks stop supporting it and participating in it, the ignorance will decrease significantly. Other ethnic groups may purchase more, but Black youth are the trend setters. Just like it took Black youth to bring Rap to the forefront in the late 70's and 80's (and I was part of that generation), it will take Blacks to set the trend once again and bring the ignorance to a halt.

In that sense, African American women can play a role in doing that. Black women help to define what is cool and hip in the so-called Black Community. If they do more to protest this kind of behavior from rappers, I gaurantee you it will force a change. But so far, Black women continue to be willful participants (even cheerleaders) in their own degradation. This is a very serious problem....because there is a generation of Black youth growing up today, watching this indifference and taking that same indifference to mean "acceptance".....that this somehow should be seen as acceptable behavior.

Now some folks like to blame the record companies....and to some extent they are culpable...but they don't share the full blame. Record companies can't sell the records and make the ignorant, degenerate videos without the willful consent of the rappers. They are not holding the rappers at gunpoint... The rappers WANT to engage in this nonsense, mostly on their own.

One thing that the record companies are responsible for is preventing other rappers from coming to the forefront who would challenge and "call out" the 50 cents, and other thugs. In the past, there was Public Enemy as a counterweight to the nonsense that was out there...today, there is no such counterweight....and therefore things have gotten way out of control.

If I ruled the world for a day....one of my first orders of business would be to ban most of the degenerate commercial rap music (basically ban it all...with a few exceptions)....and I would end BET (B.S. Entertainment Television) one of the most toxic TV networks in the country (at least for Black youth who watch it).

The Angry Independent said...

Thanks Mario!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, what planet are you on, I watch B.E.T how about you! Beautiful black women, all colors and sizes grace the rap videos, an occasional white whore may pop up but mostly the brown beauties take over! Just because a black woman is light complected with long hair does not mean that they are Brazilian/Cuban or Puerto Rican!

click said...

They will reject the poison coming from hip hop when they stop getting paid!