The problem with the anti-Hip Hop movement within the African American community is that it is not only masochistic, but it covertly justifies oppression. The anti-Hip Hop movement justifies the disproportionate overrepresentation of African Americans in prison and the disproportionate underrepresentation of African Americans in top job positions; and it does so by demonizing one of the most proprietary staples in African American history: Hip-Hop culture. Instead of demanding reform from without—instead of questioning the society which allowed such inequity to exist—the leaders of the anti-Hip Hop movement have turned the gun unto themselves, Hip Hop culture, and the entire African American community. This is typical suicidal behavior. In suicide, the actor hopes to conjure power in a world where they feel otherwise powerless. Leaders of the anti-Hip Hop movement, in comparison, have placed a cold barrel to African American consciousness–to the brain of the African American community: Hip-Hop. Hands trembling and tears streaming, these leaders heap blame upon themselves. They ridicule themselves for the acts committed unto them.  “If not for Hip-Hop, we’d be seen as equal,” they say.  “We’d be equally employed, equally healthy, treated equally by the justice system, and equally wealthy, if not for Hip-Hop. If not for that vile Hip-Hop.” And as that gun rattles against the temple of the African American community, it is these anti-Hip Hop leaders who preach of the empowerment to be gained from just pulling the trigger and putting an end to a staple of African American consciousness—putting an end to Hip Hop. But I—oh—I and the Michael Eric Dysons, and the Dream Hamptons, and the Toures, and the KRS-Ones, and the Molefi Asantes of the world; we live to talk that gun down. We clasp our fingers tightly around those of these anti-Hip Hop leaders, and slowly we remove that gun from its press against African American consciousness. And with that gun removed, and Hip-Hop remaining alive, the African American community can have a rational dialogue about its plight—a rational dialogue with historical and current context.


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