Today I would like to react against a specific kind of corporate journalism, which keeps defending a corporate America with its closed minded values.
Some journalists seem to point an angry finger at hip hop culture, accusing it of inducing violence, mostly among very young people. Mainstream rappers are also accused to contribute to the increasing praise of a scandalous gun and drug culture, to quote most of them angry journalists.
While it is true that some young people in the ghetto would definitely need some guidance from adults and stop taking some artists as their role models (in the wrong sense of the term), when those emcees don’t even claim to be- I do think that people should stop blaming each kind of violence that happens in today s ghettos on hip hop.
First and foremost, hip hop in its essence is artistic expression. Therefore, it should be considered as such and be treated with respect.
Although we could barely ignore that the context in which hip hop was born in the NYC ghettos was a context of rebellion against the American government ‘s bad housing politics towards black people in particular.
Not is the culture to blame for violence happening in American ghettos, but corporate America in itself. The American government of the sixties created the rage and rebellion of the ghettos. Who does gun and drug traffics benefit in the end? To ghetto inhabitants? Don’t be naive on that point: it certainly benefits to the American government. Ice Cube intelligently demonstrated it in his Why We Thugs song.
We cannot deny that violence exists and that people are getting killed in ghettos on a daily basis. Dramas do happen, whether they hit emcees or regular people.
However it is kinda ridiculous and narrow minded to blame it on the music.
Some mainstream emcees like 50 Cent and many others are certainly giving hip hop a bad image. They also seem to summarize it to fast money, big jewels, beautiful ladies and guntalks.
Therefore, we need to go back to hip hop’s essence, an art that is all about self expression, rhythm, music and the art of rhyme.
Copyright2007 by Isabelle Esling
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