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quote:
Corporations do not cause us NOT to teach our young about their cultural heritage. We don't even teach them about the history of hip hop for goodness sake!


Just started reading this... so I know there's tons of stuff I've missed... but corporations in all attention grabbing industries just happen to have a systematic way that they "teach" or influence or youth. We, unfortunately, don't. We don't have near the cohesive and constant systematic and institutionalized way to teach or influence our youth, much less come up with an overriding influence that will counteract these "outside" influences on our youth en masse.

What I'm saying is just what HB is saying, albeit a bit different:
It's not enough to tell these brothas to just cut it out.
We have to fill their heads (and their spirits) with something else!


That, to me, is an institutional problem. The lack of them.

We don't educate (read: systematically socialize) our youth en masse, so, IMO... that we don't have even greater problems is a testament to efforts of even our loose, scattered and small scale or disjointed responses.

Our churches and civic organizations just aren't enough. And that's no swipe against them.
quote:
Originally posted by Rowe:
But so does the rest of America. Your characterization is not unique to Black people, right? All that we have to do is study the roles played by White heroes like Brad Pitt (in Mr. and Mrs. Smith), Tom Cruise, and even the characters on HBO's hit series, The Sopranos to know that excessive violence, thuggery, and brutality is something that the dominant members of American culture enjoy and worship. American men in general learn at very early ages that acting out aggressive and violent behaviors is what defines a man and wins a man respect. The only difference is that when White men act out these violent behaviors, mostly in film (million-dollar movies), which are also driven by corporatism, and are PAID large sums of money for it, they are not demonized for doing so. Conversely, when BLACK MALE artists try to do the same, using a different media (music), they ARE demonized for it. And in some cases, are locked up and put into jail, just for talking about it.
The difference is that there is a balance in the white community... for every Tom C. that is negative, there is at least one Tom C. movie that is positive... that is positive... Not the case when it come to Black Cinema...

quote:
This constant demonizing of the Black man is what has produced the very angry, frustrated, and confused Black male rappers that you see today, and what has created an uprising of rap groups like N.W.A. (Niggas With An Attitude), because conscious hip hop has done NOTHING for the Black youth in terms of ending this demonization and harrassment. Furthermore, conscious hip hop did not give these young people jobs. It did not feed the masses of Black families or provide Black men with the kind of life and standard of living that they observed everyone else in America enjoying. <----And THAT is why conscious hip hop has become extinct and hip hop that focuses on increasing wealth, power, and status is alive and thriving. Since rap music has focused on wealth-building and entrepreneurship, there have been more Black men obtaining positions of leadership in this industry than ever before. I don't condone violence and materialism, but Jay-Z, for example, represents the apex of success in terms of what a really talented artist could accomplish in the music industry.
What produced NWA was the constant ass whippings at the hands of their supposed protectors - the police...

What seems to be forgotten is this... that conscious rap was a living, breathing and thriving entity way before gangsta rap was even thought of... C-rap was systematically eliminated from mass production by the rec. cos... not the artists. Rec. Co. execs chose not to allow c-rap to be produced because it caused young Black kids to question what was being fed to them in the educational system and on the daily news... It had young Black kids actually doing some research into and thinking about their history... Young Black kids were actually embracing Africa as their point of origin... We were on the verge of witnessing a revolution... then came g-rap and c-rap was kicked off the table or rather the turntable...

If you followed the history of rap, you would see an evolutionary process that brought about changes every 3-5 yrs except when it came to g-rap... G-rap is being artificially held in place... The industry has been stuck for the past 15 or so yrs on g-rap... the evolution has ceased...

And for the record, Jay-Z's talent is marketing, not rap...
quote:
Originally posted by Rowe:

Therefore, if we want these brothas to talk about topics that we perceive to be more positive and beneficial to the Black community, then we must change these young brothas (and sistas) mentalities and thinking.


Change them? How?

If over the course of the last fifteen years every dollar that was invested by the music industry behind what most would consider negative rap was instead put behind developing and marketing conscious, positive, uplifting rap - you don't think those billions of dollars that the artists, music producers, writers, video producers, musicians, etc. chased would have made a difference? You assert that they would not have influenced the industry at all, is that what you are really saying??? That makes no sense to me.

Cash rules everything around me, C.R.E.A.M., get the money - dollar dollar bill y'all!
quote:
Originally posted by Rowe:

Your characterization is not unique to Black people, right?


It's unique to black people when the music form is almost entirely black and the incentives in the industry are to create images, lyrics etc. which are destructive FAR more disproportionately to us. Brad Pitt can take on a role as a villian but white boys all across America are not influenced in the same way that black boys are by images of black men. Can't you see that these images reinforce ALL of the stereotypes that white folks have of us? That we are violent. That we are beasts controlled by our urges as opposed to by our heads. That we violate the law. ETC.

When a white boy sees an image of a white man doing something stupid, that image is but one image among millions of others that reinforce whiteness as all that is good and aspirational in society.

When a black boy sees a negative image, he sees something that, again, reinforces what white America thinks about us - as an anti-social, non productive, beast. Absent the millions of other positive images that the white boy consumes about himself, the black boy has no choice but to internalize the images and take them on as a part of his identity - however subtley.


quote:
Conversely, when BLACK MALE artists try to do the same, using a different media (music), they ARE demonized for it. And in some cases, are locked up and put into jail, just for talking about it.


When a white boy watches the Sopranos its funny, its entertaining and its surrounded by millions and millions of positive, uplifting, affirming images that counter it and tell him that he is "the chosenn one". A black boy sees The Flavor of Love and sees a clown and that reinforces every negative stereotype that he sees throughout the media - the news, movies, etc., etc. Absent positive role models who constantly tell him that what he sees is NOT ALL that black men are - he starts internalizing those images and next thing you know - he's doing things which act out what he sees on TV.
I've bowed out of this discussion - since there really is no "discussing" AT ALL going on here and I at least want to protect the integrity of the presentation of my ideas (which apperently were too advanced for some people). I don't enjoy "talking" to a wall.

So my remining involvement here has been focused on reconstructing this post. Reconstruction follows:

MBM, You're a little older than me.

But I don't recall the Black establishment being too crazy about conscious hip hop either. I recall that they felt just as threatened by Public Enemy.

Personally ... and this is real ... while coming up (working class), I've felt more oppressed by black folk than I ever did by white people or media messages. Yes. I've experienced white racism. Yes. I have a problem with many media messages. But these pale in comparison with my problems with the black establishment.

When I interviewed for my current job, I was told that there were "problems" in race relations in this city (a metropolitam area of some 1 million + people by the way). In particular, there was Klan activity on campus.

Since I've been here I've also learned that there is problem with black on black youth violence. The black youth in this city (males in particular) show all the marks of oppression that we're discussing here. What have I learned since I've been here about the sources of this oppression?

Personal Anecdote:

There is a monthly luncheon/panel discussion held at the Faculty/Alumni Club. This event is devoted to issues of diversity on campus and in the larger community.

At one of these events which I attended there were two speakers. The first was the (black) chief of police and the second was a local community activist and member of the Nation of Islam. The topic was youth violence in the city and ways to address it. Although it was not explicitly stated, the subtext was, of course, black on black youth violence in the poorer areas.

I'll never forget that at one point, in an effort I think to appeal to the sense of responsibility and community involvement of the (mostly black) audience, the chief throws out the following question:

"How many of you all are Christian?"

There was an awkward pause and then everyone in the room except me raised their hand - including the police chief's Muslim co-speaker!

Now ... this wasn't a church. This was a University sponsored event ostensibly dedicated to promoting DIVERSITY sck ... but it illustrates one of my central points that all too frequently we don't promote (or even tolerate) diversity among ourselves.

When the panel discussion ended and questions from the audience began I took the first question. I seized that opportunity to express something that had been on my mind almost the whole time. I threw out the question:

"How many of you in this room are black or Latino males under the age of 35?"

Two people in the whole room raised their hand: Me .... and the waiter ...

I.e., this forum attended by ministers and black (mostly older and female) middle class people were having this discussion about people who were just barely represented in the room (and if you consider class and a younger age bracket, perhaps they weren't represented at all).

They had no problem at all alienating (marginalizing) those few representatives in the process ... And they were barely even aware of it.

I give this example because it's very typical of my experiences since I've been here.

I've actually stopped attending these things because I got tired of being slapped in the face (albeit unintentionally).

Actually, this is quite typical of my experiences generally. When I was in grad school (in white dominated college towns), I'd go to black churches just to be surrounded by black people. There weren't too many other options. But then I'd be so alienated by the message that I wouldn't feel the need to do it again for another year.

My point: WE OURSELVES do some retarded AZZ self-oppressive AZZ shit.

We alienate our youth. Fail to teach them anything or pass down much of value. Don't really welcome them or listen to what they're saying (which might be why they've created a musical form which makes a virtue of swearing loudly). And only seem happy when they're listening to us. Then we wonder what's wrong with hip hop.

Blaming big business and the media just doesn't cut it with me.

Sorry.
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HonestBrother - I'm so sorry - instead of hitting the quote button, I hit the edit button right next to it and ended up responding to your post by editing it - which included erasing some pieces of your text. I apologize. I had no intention to do that!

Please recreate whatever comments are missing. I'm sorry. Frown

P.S. I just reposted your post where I screwed up - it quotes you appropriately and shows my responses. If you want to recreate your original post, please do. I can delete the post that I edited if you want as well. Sorry HB.
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quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

MBM, You're a little older than me.

But I don't recall the Black establishment being too crazy about conscious hip hop either. I recall that they felt just as threatened by Public Enemy.


Sir, this may be true, but it doesn't speak to how white corporate America is creating incentives for us to clown ourselves. It doesn't speak to how they are being entertained while we destroy ourselves from the inside out.

quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

Personally ... and this is real ... while coming up (working class), I've felt more oppressed by black folk than I ever did by white people or media messages. Yes. I've experienced white racism. Yes. I have a problem with many media messages. But these pale in comparison with my problems with the black establishment.


I hear you and would love to explore that with you some day on another thread. In my opinion, I'm not sure how that impacts this topic. The "black establishment" has little to no power or influence on this business.

quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

My point: WE OURSELVES do some retarded AZZ self-oppressive AZZ shit.


Of course. My point is that white folks have pushed us to do MORE and MORE "retarded AZZ self-oppressive AZZ shit". They are being entertained immensely by it AND making billions from it!

quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

Blaming big business and the media just doesn't cut it with me.


This is a particularly sensitive issue for you because of how you personally interact with what you describe as "the black establishment". This is something that while perhaps parallel at some levels, really has little to do with how white folks are making money and being entertained by encouraging us to act in self-destructive ways.

Furthermore, one could easily argue that the negative behavior that we are talking about contributes to the generational disconnect that you decry.

Lastly, "the black establishment" didn't create Hip Hop. Moreover they didn't create the overwhelming creative gravitational pull to incent young people to create the shit that we see on BET. In my opinion, you are asking "the black establishment" to have countered the billions of billions of dollars that corporate America put out there for our young people to chase after. That they can't speaks more to the extraordinary strength of the almighty dollar and less to anyone within the black community's efforts otherwise.
MBM, can't you see that the "black establishment" are precisely the sector that should be providing the counterbalance????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
?????????????????


And THEY ARE NOT DOING IT.

You want your kids to have other influences? You want artists in the community? Thinkers? Mathematicians? Poets? Philosophers? Photographers? In the community?

People who can mentor youth AND PROVIDE ALTERNATIVES to the media message???????????????

Well then

Create institutional space for these people! sck

If you're not doing that ... but driving them out instead ...

THAT'S ON YOU ... NOT big business ...

And even if big business stopped TOMORROW ... we'd still have a sick culture ...

And it wouldn't impact the situation I took some pains to describe in my previous post one iota.
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

MBM, can't you see that the "black establishment" are precisely the sector that should be providing the counterbalance????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
?????????????????


Ok - you do the math! Wink BILLIONS and BILLIONS of dollars from the record industry to create music that makes white America happy but that destroys the African American community versus ? ? ? ? what precisely?

What would you have them do sir? The only thing I've read from you on this is to have them talk less about Christianity in churhces and more about the heritage of Hip Hop. sck
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

MBM, can't you see that the "black establishment" are precisely the sector that should be providing the counterbalance????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????
?????????????????


Ok - you do thte math! Wink BILLIONS and BILLIONS from the record industry to create music that makes them happy but that cuts your throat versus ? ? ? ? what precisely?



VERSUS WHAT????

I'VE SPENT THE WHOLE F*CKING THREAD TELLING YOU WHAT ...

I've proposed several different ideas in this thread alone.

And you're stuck in "ignore"-mode.

I have no plans to waste my time repeating myself ...

Especially when you're just going to delete my posts ... sck
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:


Especially when you're just going to delete my posts ... sck


Hey HB - get real. You've offered ABSOLUTELY NOTHING other than some feel good pablum about offering choices, teaching cultural history, embracing the young people etc. GROW UP. The world is a cut throat place. That you didn't get a hug from some elder has you all distraught.

THAT'S LIFE!!

HOW IS ANYTHING YOU'VE SAID GOING TO OFFSET BILLIONS OF BILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO DO OTHERWISE? You want to have the elders give young folks a hug and sing kumbaya. Please! nono
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

MBM, you go scew yourself.

You can't complain about bad old big business if you don't do the simplest common sense SHIT to counteract it's influence.


OK, great. If it's so "simple" and "common sense", then please articulate it clearly for us. Spell it out. What is it that we should do? Again - all I've read from you is about "heritage and hugs"! For someone with skant few economic options like many of those on the rap scene, how is your "heritage and hugs" going to counter hard cold cash available from corporate America?

And btw - I DO counteract it. DAILY. My kids don't listen to it. They don't watch it on TV. They don't participate in this manufactured imagery and culture. Beyond that, they know who they are. They know about their culture and history. They are made to be surrounded by African Americans who are educated and who achieve on a daily basis. They have been inculcated with a respect for others - particularly adults and women. They also recognize the importance of academics and learning to their over-all development.

Furthermore, on a broader level, the whole point of this thread is to "counteract it": to point out how we are being manipulated and exploited and to encourage us to be more thoughtful about how the game is played and how we are playing it.

So - don't be so quick to tell others what they are doing or not doing. To me - what I have just described (what I do) is the "simplest common sense shit".

quote:
Your middle class azz has no right to complain whatsoever.


A) Please show where I have "complained" about anything?

B) It's telling that you perceive talking about how we can move our community forward as "complaining". Perhaps you need to lift your nose out of a book every now and then and see what's really going on in the world. If you can't see that business exploits people then we have nothing much to talk about as we live in two completely different worlds.

C) Am I supposed to be offended by your "middle class" accusation? Particularly so when it's thrown out by someone in the . . . "middle class"? Confused

To be clear, I have none of the hang ups about who I am and where I've come from that you apparently do. Not only am I middle class, but my family has been so for 6 generations. That fact doesn't make me uncomfortable in the least. In fact, I'm quite proud of my accomplishments, as I know your children will be of yours one day.
The accusation was thrown out by someone FROM the lower classes.

Who has survived and seen all the stuff you've been talking about. Someone who was not largely exposed to an educated conscious environment in youth ... and who has learned this stuff entirely on his own. And who is intimately aware of how black institutions (the "establishment") fail the lower class ...

Because I'm FROM THERE ... I'VE BEEN THROUGH IT ... Roll Eyes

And if all you got from my post is what you indicated then I suggest you go back and reread my posts.

What I get from this exchange is that you're not interested in hearing anything except for what you want to fucking hear .. Roll Eyes
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

What I get from this exchange is that you're not interested in hearing anything except for what you want to fucking hear .. Roll Eyes


All I'm asking is a simple question. Explain your argument.

There are billions of dollars being invested to create the music that most of us would say is counter productive to our community. You seem to somehow disagree that money is the predominant incentive for folks in rap. You seem to blame what you describe as "the black establishment" for it. So - despite the fact that it is corporate America - the record industry et al - that spends the money to make these rap superstars and to emblazon their images all over the earth in the quest for greater profit - you seem to want to argue that it is, in fact, "the black establishment" that is responsible for the negative aspects of rap music.

I'm simply trying to connect the dots of your argument and having a hard time doing so.

Do you think if the billions of dollars that went to develop and market gansgta rap et al went to conscious rap instead that we would still have the predominance of gansgsta rap that we do in America? If I am overstating corporate America's role, then you seem to infer that their money has little impact on the music. That even though all of the money would be behind conscious music - we'd still have gangsta.

So rap artists would just leave that money on the table - stay poor - to somehow rebel against "the black establishment"? Is that it?
Honestly, MBM ... are you being deliberately obtuse?

I'm trying to explain to you (from first hand experience) that our kids come up in a society where they have little guidance from their immediate family. Fathers are often not there or relations are strained and distant. Like in my case. Plus my parents were both high school drop outs.

And they live in communities that poorly manage the few resources that they do have.

Why don't more kids go to the churches? WE HAVE SO MANY OF THEM ....

I've suggested to you that might be because the church's message is irrelevant and doesn't relate to us.

The "black establishment" is all up into its club (just us) time and Jack & Jill (remember that lovely discussion?). And I believe they're also a big part of the reason why many people with talent leave and go to the big city or simply don't stay "in the community". They function largely to preserve their own comfort level.

I'm telling you - having been there and actually I am there now - that there's nowhere else to fucking go except the streets. And your only educators are your peer group. And yourself. Kids teaching kids.

OK and the media.

I didn't say the media was irrelevant.

What I've been saying again and again and again and again is that the forces that should be there to counteract media influence aren't there.

THEY SHOULD BE ...

Meanwhile (as Rowe pointed out) the "negative" rappers aren't reading from a script. Thay're largely talking about what they know. Which is not much.

And maybe just maybe the people who listen to it do so because they relate to it ... AND they're not being presented with anything else.

A large part of that is OUR FAULT.

What part of English do you NOT understand?

This is coming to you from one of the lucky ones.
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In middle America there is a HUGE black talent drain. The demographics bear this out.

MBM, I look at it every day.

I'm in that situation. This is what my anecdote was designed to communicate.

It was also designed to demonstrate how the "black establishment" helps to accelerate it.

In my own situation, I have no interest whatsoever in staying here to contribute to "academic diversity" ...

Or staying here to participate in youth programs or community outreach ... or to be a positive influence on youth here.

Which is a shame because when I came here, I WANTED to make a difference. I really did.

But now ... I'm on the first train out of this community.

That's not because of white racism ... or the media ... or negative rappers ...

It's because of the "black establishment".

And I've talked to enough others to realize I'm not the only one who has experienced this.

So you can take your "That's life" and shove that shit ...
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I once read an article about a young teenage (white) girl in Alabama who entered and won a science fair.

The article was partly concerned about getting girls into the sciences.

But what stuck with me ... what really stuck with me ... was when she was asked "What gave you the idea that you could enter a science fair and win?" ... her answer was that another girl in her neighborhood entered a fair. This gave her the idea. If someone else could enter so could she.

The principle is very simple.

I've seen this again again.

When I was in Princeton, I noticed ALMOST all the math grad students had something in common:

They had an academic in their family.

I was one of the few exceptions. I probably was the only one with parents who were dropouts. In fact I speak from the point of view of one who has been "a first" many many times. Both first in family ... and first black period.

What I've been trying to spell out to you are sociological conditions which we help to maintain ... and which work to our detriment.

If you want your youth to do other things then there need to be diverse influences in the community. They need to be there to function as "the salt" (of the earth ... so to speak).

My saying that you need to nurture that diversity is not "feel good" ... OK?
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

Meanwhile (as Rowe pointed out) the "negative" rappers aren't reading from a script. Thay're largely talking about what they know. Which is not much.


Listen - you're the numbers guy. Billions of dollars are spent every year to sell an image and a lifestyle to white kids. That doing so also has extraordinarily negative ramifications to African America has no bearing on those who write the checks. They want to get paid. Period. While you want to blame what you believe is "the black establishment" for this phenomenon, if one is to allocate blame proportionately - the person writing the freakin' check is the one who deserves the lion's share of that blame. Blaming anyone black for that is ridiculous, frankly. It's like "blaming" the street drug dealer for the drug problem in this country when everyone knows no drugs are grown and processed in da hood.

Second, you must be more thoughtful about your notion of "the black establishment". You infer that this group - whoever they are - is in some way controlling African Amreica. That's just ridiculous friend. (The very existence of Hip Hop itself renders this argument nonsensical. To listen to you, if "TBE" had the power you acribe to it, then we'd all be listening to the Temptations or something! 15 ) We live in a world where white supremacy and capitalist exploitation DEFINE reality. That African America, as a community, has not been able to overcome those forces yet is unfortunate, but not something to blame on any segment or sector of that community. It's the freakin' world we live in.

Third, yes - the rappers are talking about what they "know". Can you not see that "what they know" is a function of the broader influences of that white supremacy and exploitation? They "know" violence et al - largely - because that is the petri dish that has been made for them. Furthermore, record company money creates the real - where the rubber hits the road - incentives for those rappers to continue to talk about that aspect of their lives that is marketable to white America. DON'T YOU THINK THAT IF CONSCIOUS RAP COULD SELL TO WHITE SUBURBIA THERE WOULD BE MONEY BEHIND IT? There's a reason why there isn't more conscious rap - and it is largely NOT because there are too few rappers to rap about it. (Heck you posted an article that said that (I think) most rappers are conscious.) It is because there is no money to be made from it by white record companies selling to white kids. Hence, the music is relegated to campus/alternative radio stations, B list record lables, etc. overwhelmingly drowned out by the 98% of the music that is what corporate American pushes.

Now what is hard to understand about that?
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

In middle America there is a HUGE black talent drain. The demographics bear this out.

MBM, I look at it every day.

I'm in that situation. This is what my anecdote was designed to communicate.

It was also designed to demonstrate how the "black establishment" helps to accelerate it.

In my own situation, I have no interest whatsoever in staying here to contribute to "academic diversity" ...

Or staying here to participate in youth programs or community outreach ... or to be a positive influence on youth here.

Which is a shame because when I came here, I WANTED to make a difference. I really did.

But now ... I'm on the first train out of this community.

That's not because of white racism ... or the media ... or negative rappers ...

It's because of the "black establishment".

And I've talked to enough others to realize I'm not the only one who has experienced this.

So you can take your "That's life" and shove that shit ...


Eloquent as always HB. Roll Eyes What does this have to do with the topic? Personally, I know LOTS of African Americans who have taken advantage of programs and relationships (like A Better Chance or Big Brothers or through fraternities/sororities etc. where they HAVE connected with people in the community and have received the support they have needed to prosper both professionally and personally. I'm sorry that you have not, but perhaps you have some hand to play in your experiences as well. Don't we all?

Blaming "the black establishment" or "the black middle class" or whomever you ascribe this boogey man status to may speak to your personal experiences, but it does not necessarily define the world. Beyond that, seeking to answer all problems of our community through the lens of your personal experience would seem to provide a particularly narrow viewpoint on things - whomever the person is.

Do black folks face tremendous challenges to countering racism and classism in this country? Of course.

Has the success of individual African Americans been uneven - leaving some African Americans in a more advantaged position than others? Of course.

Could there be greater communication and interaction between all elements within the African American community. Of course.

In my eyes, though, this has little to do with what I tried to write about - which is understanding that "keeping it real" is really as much about entertaining and enriching white folks - than naturally and honestly expressing ourselves. Beyond that, that we are complicit in the destructive impact of this exploitation is something that we have to come to grips with AND attempt to conjure a solution to.

Period. That's it.
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:
I know that the "black establishment" controls black institutions .... and that right now you're behaving like one of em ...

I'll resume this "conversation" when you remove the wax from your ears.

Until then I'm not wasting anymore of my time.

I'm convinced there's something about melanin and aging that, when combined, produces hearing loss ...
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:

I'm convinced there's something about melanin and aging that, when combined, produces hearing loss ...


And I'm convinced that when ideologues are presented with notions that stretch the limits of their narrow conceptions, that they either split, begin personal attacks, or change the subject.
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:

And I'm convinced that when ideologues are presented with notions that stretch the limits of their narrow conceptions, that they either split, begin personal attacks, or change the subject.


Ideologue?

You're speaking out of your AZZ.

You've only said one goddamned thing in this thread:

"billions and billions of dollars"

"billions and billions of dollars"

"billions and billions of dollars"

AD INFINITEM

In fact, AD NAUSEAM

Is that more "refined" and eloquent for your taste? A bit of Latin?

Seems to me you're the one with the narrow conception.

Ideologue? lol .... that's such a biiiig word ....
What else matters, than dollars, in business and in this capitalist economy? I know you're not in business, but surely you see this.

I'll try again. If record companies do NOT have the kind of influence on the music that I suggest, if they had invested behind conscious music 15 years ago - would we still have the level of gangsta rap that we have now or not?

It's an honest question.

P.S. Why do you think that record companies put their money behind gangsta music? What was the reason? Was is just a random decision?
In case you missed this post.

quote:
Originally posted by MBM:

What else matters, than dollars, in business and in this capitalist economy? I know you're not in business, but surely you see this.

I'll try again. If record companies do NOT have the kind of influence on the music that I suggest, if they had invested behind conscious music 15 years ago - would we still have the level of gangsta rap that we have now or not?

It's an honest question.

P.S. Why do you think that record companies put their money behind gangsta music? What was the reason? Was is just a random decision?
Just to ground this conversation, here is a summary of my argument:

quote:
Originally posted by MBM:

The following represents a hypothesis about the current state of Hip Hop.

  • Hip Hop is BIG business. I read recently that three out of every four dollars spent on music is spent on Hip Hop. WOW! Eek

  • The vast majority of Hip Hop consumers are white.

  • Although there are notable African American Hip Hop producers and record companies, the majority of Hip Hop music - at some point or another - goes through white companies - whether in manufacturing, marketing, or distribution etc. As with all other industries in this country, most of the money made in the Hip Hop business is made by white companies.

  • Art chases money. If all of a sudden there were billions of dollars to be made from creating French impressionist landscapes - every Tom, Dick, and Harry with a paint brush would be painting French impressionist landscapes.

    Here's my contention: while Hip Hop comes from African Americans and, at some levels, "celebrates" an aspect of African American culture, it has really evolved to be a music form that is driven by whites and that - without us even knowing it – has us parodying white stereotypes of us. Hip Hop, largely, is like black folks in ˜black face'!!! sck


  • How we get to the black establishment, the black middle class etc. from here is beyond me. I'm talking about how the music business is run and the fact that we have become complicit in our own self-destructive behavior.

    That's all.

    Are there other socio-psychological, socio-economic, internal/external, current/historical etc., etc., etc. factors that impact African America? Of course.
    If we're talking about business, then I give you the props ... you know more. I haven't disputed a thing you've said about the business * proper * . I agree with you there ...

    But we're also discussing culture ... and the * hypothetical * impact that the business has on culture.

    Otherwise we wouldn't be talking about the business right?????

    Here is where my comments were directed. I was attempting to examine other structures which I believe play a more crucial role than record execs ... And here I believe you're talking out of your azz.

    Just like the "black establishment" ... Of course you don't know shit about what's it's like being poor and black ... or marginalized even within a marginal culture ... but you're sure as hell going to tell the rest of us about it ...

    And even have the "nerve" to tell me - with your JACK & JILL self - "That's Life" .... Smile

    MBM, man, that was not cool ... I thought it rather low actually ... especially when you follow it up commenting sarcastically on my "eloquence" ... When what you said had so much ignorant (and hypocritical) callousness to it, it was ridiculous. It almost made me wonder why you'd bother to start the thread considering that I come from the very parts of the society that you're supposedly so concerned about ... Frown
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    quote:
    Originally posted by HonestBrother:

    I was attempting to examine other structures which I believe play a more crucial role than record execs ... And here I believe you're talking out of your azz.


    Great. Just substabtiate your position. You speak in vague terms about how the black establishment doesn't reach out to youth or provide them with choices or whatever . . . well, WTF does that mean.

    My thesis spells out a specific and logical argument: that MONEY makes the world go around. You refute that. Fine. I love the discussion. It might be a more productive one, though, if you could articulate more detail about your contention.

    We KNOW that people do things for money.

    We KNOW that white boys in suburbia are the largest consumer group of rap.

    We KNOW that the music industry is a FOR PROFIT enterprise.

    We therefore KNOW that they will only invest money behind things that they think they can earn a handsome profit on.

    If 75% of ALL music sales are from rap - your contention is that that's just a coincidence and that the negative imagery is a product of the younger generations' angst at the older???? HUH?

    Just spell it out. I'm not the one with the PhD remember. 15 You should be able to lay it out as simply as the transitive property of equality: If A=B and if B=C then A=C. Just help me understand your point.
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