Let’s make this clear: Palestine has no navy, army or air force; this is not a war, this genocide!
Today is Columbus Day, a holiday where we recognize Columbus’ “discovery” of the “New World” with a day off–for some–and a sale or two.
For others, though, Columbus Day is the official reminder of European invasion and, to employ today’s terms, some of the first acts of terrorism.
Glenn T. Morris, a professor at the University of Colorado at Denver, published an oped about abolishing the Columbus Day holiday:
Believe it or not, our government is using Hip Hop as a form of diplomacy abroad, thereby countering “poor perceptions” of the US and promoting democracy in the Middle East.
Al Jezeera writer Hishaam Aidi has written a fascinating piece on Hip Hop’s appeal to Middle Eastern youth, and how our government aims to exploit it.
In Peter Coy’s article the Kids Are Not Alright, he quotes that democracies are “much better at managing large numbers of highly educated people” than are nations with an official leader who has absolute authority (read: autocratic countries). Leaders of autocratic nations face the dilemma of needing an educated work force to grow their country’s economy, but with increased levels of education the possibility of political dissent grows. This point is most elaborated in the recent youth revolts in Egypt and Tunisia. A large part of what drove Egyptian and Tunisian youth to take action were the high unemployment rates. Across the globe youth in democracies also face high (or even higher) unemployment rates, yet, they aren’t toppling their respective governments. In democratic nations like Spain and the United States, where the youth in Spain and American minority youth’s unemployment rates are the equivalent or significantly higher than those rates seen in Egypt and Tunisia, why are the youth not carrying out mass political demonstrations?
Good day niggaz, the non black niggaz that is. Though many black leaders push for the burial of the term, they have not done so on behalf of the other colonized races. A Black multi-cultural person will soon confront the taboo as a minority among members of another culture. This was the case for me when I went to an Indian birthday party. “Nigga” gets thrown all over the place, and it’s not in reference to the African brother. Black folks are expected to get defensive with such lingo, but the expectation changes when the odds of safety are not in your favor. Relaxation forces itself as an alternative, and still, the discomfort does not escape. So what does this mean for the 21st century Black American?
So Nas is pissed.
Earlier this week, a private email sent by Nas to executives at Def Jam, Nas’ current label home, leaked onto the internet. And it is a doozy. Nas slams the label suits for holding up the release of his highly anticipated Lost Tapes Vol. 2 collection, railing against a major label system that serves the interests of label execs at the expense of artists and fans.
The first full paragraph goes a little something like this:
“I won’t even tap dance around in an email, I will get right into it. People connect to the Artist @ the end of the day, they don’t connect with the executives. Honestly, nobody even cares what label puts out a great record, they care about who recorded it. Yet time and time again its the executives who always stand in the way of a creative artist’s dream and aspirations. You don’t help draw the truth from my deepest and most inner soul, you don’t even do a great job @ selling it. The #1 problem with DEF JAM is pretty simple and obvious, the executives think they are the stars. You aren’t…. not even close. As a matter of fact, you wish you were, but it didn’t work out so you took a desk job. To the consumer, I COME FIRST. Stop trying to deprive them! I have a fan base that dies for my music and a RAP label that doesn’t understand RAP. Pretty fucked up situation”
Damn. Straight ether.
Nas’ sentiments are passionate, honest, and dead-on. But this is not a new phenomenon. Not even close. You think an email is intense? How ‘bout changing your name to an unpronounceable symbol and purposefully sabotaging your own career?
The Black Youth Project examines the attitudes, resources and culture of the young black millennials.