Verse One: Remember back in the days, when niggaz had waves
Gazelle shades, and corn braids
Pitchin pennies, honies had the high top jellies
Shootin skelly, motherfuckers was all friendly
Loungin at the barbeques, drinkin brews
With the neighborhood crews, hangin on the avenues
Turn your pages, to nineteen ninety three
Niggaz is gettin smoked G, believe me
Talk slick, you get your neck slit quick
Cause real street niggaz ain’t havin that shit
Totin techs for rep, smokin blunts in the project
Hallways, shootin dice all day
Waitin for niggaz to step up on some fightin shit
We get hype and shit and start lifin shit
So step away with your fist fight ways
Motherfucker this ain’t back in the days, but you don’t hear me though
Verse Two: No more cocoa leave-io, one two three
One two three, all of this to me, is a mystery
I hear you motherfuckers talk about it
But I stay seein bodies with the motherfuckin chalk around it
And I’m down with the shit too
For the stupid motherfuckers wanna try to use Kung-Fu
Instead of a Mac-10 he tried scrappin
Slugs in his back and, that’s what the fuck happens
When you sleep on the street
Little motherfuckers with heat, want ta leave a nigga six feet deep
And we comin to the wake
To make sure the cryin and commotion ain’t a motherfuckin fake
Back in the days, our parents used to take care of us
Look at em now, they even fuckin scared of us
Callin the city for help because they can’t maintain
Damn, shit done changed
Verse Three: If I wasn’t in the rap game I’d probably have a key knee deep in the crack game Because the streets is a short stop Either you’re slingin crack rock or you got a wicked jumpshot Shit, it’s hard being young from the slums Eatin five cent gums not knowin where your meals comin from And now the shit’s gettin crazier and major Kids younger than me, they got the Sky Grand Pagers Goin outta town, blowin up Six months later all the dead bodies showin up It make me wanna grab the nine and the shottie But I gotta go identify the body Damn, what happened to the summertime cookouts? Everytime I turn around a nigga gettin took out Shit, my momma got cancer in her breast Don’t ask me why I’m motherfuckin stressed, things done changed
For young people in my neighborhood, getting stopped and frisked is a rite of passage. We expect the police to jump us at any moment. We know the rules: don’t run and don’t try to explain, because speaking up for yourself might get you arrested or worse. And we all feel the same way — degraded, harassed, violated and criminalized because we’re black or Latino. Have I been stopped more than the average young black person? I don’t know, but I look like a zillion other people on the street. And we’re all just trying to live our lives.
Racism, like all forms of bigotry, is what it claims to oppose–victimology. The bigot is never to blame. Always is he besieged–by gays and their radical agenda, by women and their miniskirts, by fleet-footed blacks. It is an ideology of “not my fault.” It is not Ron Paul’s fault that people with an NAACP view of the world would twist his words. It is not Ron Paul’s fault that his newsletter trafficked in racism. It is not Ron Paul’s fault that he allowed people to author that racism in his name. It is anonymous political aids and writers, who now cowardly refuse to own their words. There’s always someone else to blame–as long as it isn’t Ron Paul, if only because it never was Ron Paul.
“President Obama was right in his speech last week. The division between rich and poor is a national problem. But the biggest challenge we face isn’t inequality. It’s ignorance. So many kids from West Philadelphia don’t even know these opportunities exist for them. Many come from single-parent families whose mom or dad (or in many cases their grand mom) is working two jobs to survive and are just (understandably) too plain tired to do anything else in the few short hours they’re home. Many have teachers who are overburdened and too stressed to find the time to help every kid that needs it. Many of these kids don’t have the brains to figure this out themselves – like my kids. Except that my kids are just lucky enough to have parents and a well-funded school system around to push them in the right direction.
Technology can help these kids. But only if the kids want to be helped. Yes, there is much inequality. But the opportunity is still there in this country for those that are smart enough to go for it.”
Mr. Marks is exactly right the problem is ignorance. His. Its willfulness especially. I don’t doubt his heart is somewhere near the right place, but seriously. His entire argument boils down to this: Poor black kids “don’t have the brains to figure this out for themselves” just like his presumably white middle class kids. Further, they don’t have adults with the resources to help them. So even when the odds are stacked against them, and like all children, are ill equipped to face these challenges alone, it’sstill their fault they struggle. You gotta love conservative ideology for it’s ability to engender doublethink. Orwell would be impressed.
It’s very difficult for us to grasp the notion that cops are human beings, subject to the same racial biases and flaws of other human beings. This is not a plea for mercy on their behalf. It’s a plea for understanding that abuse will happen. A gun and a badge do not confer a “great soul.”
I’m not here to blast Cain or Newt or any other man taken down by sexual issues, but I am here to say thatit’s time that parents and leaders begin to take real time out to educate and inform the boys and young men of our world that their sexuality matters to their future, it matters to their career, it matters to their money, it matters to their name.
Why would we even think of reducing anti-poverty programs before increasing taxes on the wealthy, say to where they were before George Bush decided that we needed to get rid of Clintons budget surplus (one of the few things he did well)?:
You know, normally something this stupid wouldn’t bother me, but this story really gets under my skin. If they can try to paint Common as a ‘dangerous black man,’ what black man is immune? If they think Common is vile, then I know they have no use for my black ass. Common is beyond the pale, Michelle Obama hates whitey, Eric Holder is protecting the New Black Panther Party, Shirley Sherrod is discriminating against white farmers, Barack Obama is giving reparations to black people? Conservatives, do you realize how stupid this sounds to black people?
…But shit like this is what prevents me from even getting to the point where I’d give their policies a fair hearing. And I know there are some Republicans and conservatives here, and I say that you have no chance of getting any kind of support from black voters as long as the leaders of your party are pulling these kinds of stunts.