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.
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.
Part 1 of Return of the Minstrels