Sunday, August 30, 2009

Black America: The Final Destination

Black America: The Final Destination

Paul Scott

"Sometimes, I think it's just genocide. Watching all of your people die."

"Closed Eyes"- Marcus Cox, NC artist

I just peeped the new movie called "The Final Destination" about this woe- is -me type dude warning his homies about their impending demises and their frantic attempts to beat the grim reaper. I'm not sure why I spent $6.25 to see the flick when, as a black man, I get that every night on the evening news for free...

The gloom and doom forecast for black life started out in the 16th century with the misinterpretation of scripture that condemned people of African descent to the curse of being "hewers of wood and drawers of water." It's been pretty much downhill every since.

It seems that any news dealing with black folks is, overwhelmingly, negative except for the occasional story of some lucky kid who "made it out the ghetto despite the million- to- one odds."

Whether it's stories about unemployment or high drop out rates, black on black violence or some new disease that for some strange reason only attacks black folks, news from the 'hood is, definitely, not all good.

The sad thing about it is that most of us have become so accustomed to our pitiful prognosis that we have accepted the revelations, whole heartedly, without even asking why.

And those of us who do try to challenge the statistics are faced with the unenviable task of constantly trying to decipher fact from fiction.

Is the black community, inherently, doomed to the pathologies that plague us or do our own actions determine our fate? Do we have the ability to develop strategies to relieve our burdens or will even our best made plans be sabotaged by those who have a vested interest in "keepin' the black man down?"

People like Bill Cosby have argued that if only black boys would pull up their pants and stop listening to gangsta rap then all would be right with the world. This is not much different than WEB Du Bois' argument in his 1897 essay, "The Conversation of Races" that the greatest step to solving the "Negro problem lies in the correction of the immortality, crime and laziness of the Negroes themselves, which still remains an argument since slavery."

Others have argued, quite convincingly, that the condition of African Americans is not the result of Divine Providence nor an accidental universal catastrophe but is a well designed attempt to remove people with high levels of melanin from the face of the planet.

While this may be dismissed by some as paranoia, as the character from the 80's sitcom, WKRP in Cincinnati, Dr. Johnny Fever, once said, "when everyone's out to get you, being paranoid is just a smart way of thinking."

After all the evidence is there.

As Malcolm X said at a Harlem rally in 1964, known as his 'By Any Means Necessary Speech," When you let the black man in America know where he once was and what he once had, why, he only needs to look at himself now to realize something criminal was done to him to bring him down to the low condition that he's in today."

It is foolish to deny the fact that segments in this country have offered ways to get rid of black undesirables over the years; whether it be lynchings, burnings, the Tuskegee Experiment, COINTELPRO, crack and guns in the hood or the Hurricane Katrina aftermath, the list goes on.

While many of these incidents may be chalked up to urban legends, the affect of rumors was taken very seriously by the government. In her book, "Heard it Through the Grapevine," Professor Patricia Turner writes that the Feds set up "rumor clinics" during WWII to "prevent potentially adverse hearsay of all sorts from gaining credibility." Also, in 1968, the Kerner Report recorded the operation of "Rumor Central " operations to combat urban racial disorders.

What is most troubling is that many young African Americans have embraced their fate and adopted the old Star Trek Borg mantra that "resistance is futile."

This is especially evident in Hip Hop as rappers have developed a bizarre type of necrophilia. There are hundreds of songs with the common theme of "just kill me, already, and get it over with."

The posthumous success of rappers Tupac Shakur and the Notorious BIG, both of whom seemed to predict their deaths in their lyrics, are perhaps the best examples.

This is not to suggest that the entertainment industry's exploitation of black agony started with Grandmaster Flash and the Furious 5's, "The Message." From the blues to the the situation comedy /tragedies of 70's shows such as Good Times, the industry has painted a less than rosy picture of black life. However, with changing technological advances, Hip Hop allowed black suffering to be embraced, globally.

Regardless, of the cause of our dilemma, our challenge is to find ways to restore the confidence of this young generation that they do not have to accept their prewritten obituaries but they posses the innate ability to change their environment.

Maybe, we will find out that Earth, Wind and Fire were right when they sang, "in our hearts lie all the answers to the truth you can't run from."

Until then, just like in the movie, being black in America is a constant, everyday struggle to cheat death.

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots He can be reached at (919) 451-8283or

Saturday, August 22, 2009

District 9 is Ghetto

District 9 is Ghetto:
South Africa or South Central?

Paul Scott

Picture this. A giant alien hooptie space ship with 24 inch rims and fuzzy dice on the mirror pumpin' Snoop Dog runs out of gas over a quiet Los Angeles neighborhood . With no where else to go, the alien gangsta's take up residence in the quiet manicured lawn community, quickly turning it into a 'hood. Eventually, the aliens are forced to go live in the projects surrounded by the usual black steel fence.

OK, that's what I got out of District 9, anyway.

The movie about unwanted aliens (from outer space, not across the border) landing over Johannesburg has already drawn comparisons to South African apartheid but I saw it more about the hoods in America.

Of course, initially, the apartheid connection was obvious, however, there were several things that made my mind drift from Africa to across the Atlantic to America.

First, the Africans under Apartheid were not the invaders, they were the invaded. (Check out Basil Davidson's chapters on South Africa in his book, "Africa in History") Also, with the bumpin' Hip Hop soundtrack, the movie was too modern to really be about Apartheid.

So, I saw more South Central LA instead of South Africa.

The movie had all the makings of a classic early 90's gangsta flick. You had the assault rifles , the pimps and prostitutes and gang graffiti. You even had crack in the form of cat food. One alien even wore a baseball cap cocked to the side. Not to mention you had the Po Po arresting brothers (I mean aliens) and given them Rodney King styled beat downs.

It must be noted that fellow ghetto residents, "the Nigerians," believed that by "eating" alien skin it would cure such ills as "high blood pressure" and diabetes; diseases which are prevalent in the African American community. This is kind of like the widespread belief held by many black folks that the biggest problem facing the "inner city" is gang warfare and if gangs were eliminated, then all black societal ills would automatically disappear.

The white hero of the story, Wikus Van der Merwe, who, by way of infection, was slowly transforming into an alien added an interesting dimension to the story serving as a reluctant abolitionist. I saw this a metaphor for white fascination with "gangsta chic" and the concern of white parents that Hip Hop music is the reason that Little Bobby got caught smoking "the chronic" in the school bathroom.

Although, the Van Der Merwe transformation was done by a genetic experiment courtesy of government or corporate entities, for propaganda purposes, the media (Fox News) reported that he contracted a disease by having sex with alien women.

Translation. He got exposed to "gangsta rap" and started acting "black." Kinda like one of the Jonas Brother suddenly becoming Eminem.

The final scene really divorced the movie from apartheid, as the alien liberator "Chris" jump started the "mother ship" for the purpose of securing help to take his people back home.

Those who are students of black nationalism are aware that this was the theme of several African American movements ranging from Marcus Garvey's UNIA to the Nation of Islam's theology of the "mother ship." (Not to mention a running theme of George Clinton and Parliament/Funkadelic, whose sound was heavily sampled by early West Coast rappers.)

This was quite different than apartheid, as the Africans were fighting for control of their own country as they were already, "home."

After viewing the movie I was left unsure if it e was about improving race relations or the white paranoia over the cultural amalgamation.

You tell me....

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots He can be reached at (919) 451-8283.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Anti Right Wing Rap

Check out the anti Right Wing media (and a few not so Right Wing) rap that I did with my homies Big Swag and Marcus Cox a few years back.

Monday, August 17, 2009

NWSF Advice to "Wishy Washy in Washington"

Today, No Warning Shots Fired is proud to present a new advice column. The first letter comes from Washington DC:

Dear No Warning Shots Fired,

I am having problems with the new job that I started, last January. Seems like I'm having a hard time trying to please everybody.
If I move to the right, my Left Wing friends get upset.
If I move to the left, my Right Wing friends get angry. And when they get angry, they get very, very angry.
It seems like the whole country is losing respect for me.
What should I do?


Wishy Washy in Washington

Dear Wishy Washy in Washington,

I would give you some Dr Phil type advice but you need some tough love, homie. So, I'm gonna quote the words of the late, great philosopher, Tupac Shakur:

"People diss us on the street, man! We run from Bill O'Reilly. We run from Sean Hannity. We even run from Glenn Beck! All we do is run, like we're on a track team!

If you want respect you gotta earn respect! You gotta be willin' to grab some suckas by their collars and throwdown!

You gotta get the ground beneath your feet, partna and the wind behind your back and be willing to go out in a blaze of glory like Blizzard did!!!"

Hope this helps,


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Marxist on the Mic: Hip Hop Soul-cialism

Marxist on the Mic:
Hip Hop Soul-cialism

Paul Scott

Since the early part of the 20th century the best way to diss a politician was to call him a "Socialist." Even the mere suggestion of a dude being red was sure to guarantee a 20% drop in the polls. This is what the Conservatives are counting on as they continuously sling "Commie" accusations at President Obama. While the president's so called "socialist" programs may not play in Peoria, they seem to be a big hit in the 'hood.

For most middle class Americans who are heavily invested in the system, the mere mention of Socialism is like someone with nine inch nails ,repeatedly, scratching a blackboard but for the black community the promise of a more socially equitable society has been music to the ears of an oppressed people who have been denied the American dream of Capitalism.

We must remember that the African American attraction towards Socialism did not start with the Obama administration but has existed in this country for over 70 years.

Many of the early black leaders were heavily influenced by Socialist theory if not members of the Communist party, themselves. It must be noted that while Dr. WEB DuBois is most known for being a founding member of the integrationist NAACP, by 1934, he was singing the praises of Karl Marx. Also, the head of the Civil Rights movement , Martin Luther King had Socialist theorists on his staff such as Bayard Rustin. Not to mention the fact that that the good reverend's Poor People's campaign raised a middle finger in the face of Capitalist exploitation.

During the late 60's the Marxist -Leninist philosophy of scientific Socialism was used as a blueprint for the Black Panther Party and their many community programs. The idea of the people owning the means of production resonated well with black folks who were tired of the slave-master relationship.

The impact of Socialism has been felt in the world of black entertainment, as well, as performers such as Paul Robeson got "blacklisted" for their political beliefs.

Though less overtly, rhythm and blues artists recorded tracks that favored Socialism over Capitalism as exemplified by the Isley Brothers asking "when will there be a harvest for the world," in 1976.

While many of today's Hip Hop moguls like Shawn "Jay Z" Carter and Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs are, unashamedly, black Capitalists, Hip Hop has challenged the doctrine of Capitalism since its inception. Many rappers have penned Socialist inspired lyrics, whether knowingly or not.

In 1982 Kurtis Blow yelled, "I don't want a lot, I just want enough. So why does it have to be so damn tough?" Later in 1984, rap group Divine Sounds critiqued the pitfalls of Capitalism with "What People Do for Money."

Although more known for run ins with the law than revolutionary ideology, rapper DMX presented a musical manifesto of his own with the 1994 hit, "Stop Being Greedy," when he demanded, "ya'll been eatin' long enough, stop bein' greedy. Just keep it real partner, give to the needy."

Perhaps the most overt disciples of Socialism are "the Black Panther of Rap," Paris who frequently calls for revolution on his cds and the group, Dead Prez, whose People's Army Movement urge followers to "bang on the system."

Also, the fear of a bland, monolithic society forced to dress in matching uniforms that was used to scare previous generations is lost on a Hip Hop Nation whose members wear the traditional "gangsta" gear of white T-shirts and blue jeans on a daily basis, anyway.

So, why is scientific Socialism still relevant to a Hip Hop generation far removed from the days of the McCarthy hearings ?

The reason is simple.

The condition of the masses of black people has not changed since that era nor has Capitalism.

Most black folks still have neither "a pot to pee in nor a window to throw it out of ", so Karl Marx's idea of "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need," is appealing to residents of the 'hood who, constantly, see the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer.

This does not mean that Marxism nor Communism has been seen as a perfect fit for African Americans.

It must be remembered that writers such as Harold Cruse (Crisis of the Negro Intellectual) have argued that Marxists underestimated the depths of racial superiority in the psyche of the white working class. It must also be noted that, according to Tony Martin in his book "Race First," the early American Communists were opposed to Marcus Garvey and all forms of Black nationalism as they saw this ideology as a barrier between their movement and the black working class and unemployed (the proletariat and the lumpen-proletariat).

Also, the Marxist rejection of organized religion did not sit well with an African culture based on spirituality, even though the principals of Socialism do not differ much from the "corporate responsibility" of Judaism, the "love thy neighbor" ethic of Christianity nor the "universal Brotherhood" of Islam. All of which are opposed to the amoral nature of Capitalism.

That is why black leaders such as Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) and ,to some extent ,Dr. WEB Dubois presented Socialism through the lens of of traditional African communalism which predated Marxism by centuries. Dubois wrote in "Dusk of Dawn" that " in the African communal group, ties of family and blood, of mother and child, of group relationship, made group leadership strong." Ture suggested that African Americans look beyond the short comings of the practitioners of Marxism and apply the principles of Socialism to the struggle for black empowerment.

What the Conservatives have not realized is that black folks aren't that endeared to labels. We have always been more concerned with a way to get food, clothes and shelter then getting into a philosophical debate over the merits of opposing ideologies.

We'll save that for the talking heads on Fox and CNN.

For us, be it Capitalism, Socialism or any other "ism," as we say in the 'hood, at the end of the day,

"We're just tryin' to eat."

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots He can be reached at or (919) 451-8283

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

NWSF Bullet: Clinton in the Congo

The Associated Press is reporting that US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, was in the Congo, yesterday, announcing that the US is going to give 17 million dollars to stop the "epidemic of rape directed mainly at women and girls by government troops and rebel groups fighting in the region."

While countries on the African continent do face challenges, when these stories are put out it gives the impression that the challenges are a direct result of tribalism or African black on black crime. Kinda like what goes on in the 'hood where you have black folks killing each other for no apparent reason. (To hear the media tell it.)

The truth is that areas like the Congo are victims of historical colonialism by European nations. In the case of the Congo, it came at the hands of King Leopold II of Belgium.

In his book written in 1946 , "The World and Africa ," Dr. WEB Dubois wrote that one of the worst affects of colonialism was "the complete and deliberate breaking-down of cultural patterns among the suppressed peoples."

He also used this quote:

"the invasion of family life, the ruthless destruction of every social barrier, the shattering of every tribal law, the introduction of criminal practices which struck the chiefs of the people dumb with horror-in a word, a veritable avalanche of filth and immorality overwhelmed the Congo Tribes."

Instead of taking at face value news reports of how terrible life in Africa is, we should research how European colonization played a major role in the problems that the continent is experiencing.

We must realize that the violence in Africa between the different factions in the Congo did not come about by accident.

Neither did the fighting between the Bloods and Crips in America.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

NWSF News: Advice to Dems on How to Handle Right Wing Militants

Since the "gentle and kind" approach has not worked against the Conservative Militia at the Town Hall Meetings, TRUTH Minista Paul Scott has some advice for the Democrats.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Right Wingers Riot in Stamford!

With the creation of the Birthers Movement and the Healthcare Reform Town Hall Riots, is the Grand Ole Party becoming the Gangsta Ole Party?

Do the White Thing: Rise of Conservative Militants

Do the White Thing:
The Rise of Militant Conservatives

Paul Scott


There was a riot in Stamford Connecticut, yesterday. The trouble started on the Crestwood Golf Course when corporate executive Howard "Howie" Thurston III got a call on his cell that his Viagra would no longer be covered under his health insurance policy. Enraged, Thurston slung his golf club, accidentally knocking Charles "Chuckster" Winchester off of his golf cart. This started a melee that quickly spilled into the streets of Stamford as a crowd of mostly white middle class rioters began smashing windows at Saks, grabbing Prada pumps, Gucci handbags and everything else they could get their hands on as African Americans and Latinos sat by their televisions shaking their heads in amazement.

Back in 1989, African American film director Spike Lee did a movie called "Do the Right Thing." The film, featuring Public Enemy's "Fight the Power" on the soundtrack, captured the black rage in America following such events as the Tawana Brawley incident and the Howard Beach racial unrest. The climax of the movie came when a mini riot developed in front of Sal's Italian Pizzeria after black activist, "Radio Raheem" died as a result of police brutality. Though this was the breaking point in race relations, Raheem's death was just the spark that set off the explosion as racial issues had been bubbling under the surface for months, not the least being the fact that an Italian restaurant in the 'hood didn't have any pictures of "brothers" on the wall.

So, it is with the recent mobilization of white Conservatives against the Obama presidency.

All across the US of A, there are groups of Right Wing Conservatives protesting everything from health care reform to whether the President should be deported to Africa.

While talk of "takin' it to the streets because the man is holdin' us down" is traditionally reserved for gangsta rap gurus, the sentiment is now being echoed by Right Wingers , some of whom are now threatening to bust a cap in anybody who gets in their way.

Seems like the GOP is morphing from the Grand Ole Party to the Gangsta Ole Party.

Even the most hardcore rappers are kicking back watching Fox News with note pads getting ideas for lyrics.

"Let's see...rollin' with the homies 'bout to crash the town hall; any sucka in my face is 'bout to fall..."

This is not to say that there are not people ,genuinely, PO'd by Obama's policies but some of the Right Wing militants are just ticked off that a black man is in the White House and fear that their country is undergoing a hostile take over by blacks and Latinos. The town hall rebellions and the birther movement are just convenient excuses for Joe the Mechanic to blow off some steam with other members of his clan.

Now, some of the protesters will place their right hands on the Bible swearing that they have at least one black or Latino friend and declare that their attacks on Obama have nothing (and I mean nothing) to do with race.

It never does.

Remember Emmett Till was not murdered because of racism but because he virtually raped a white woman by whistling at her and Martin Luther King was not attacked by bigots for standing up for black people but for being a "Commie sympathizer."

See, nothing racist about that at all.

The good thing about America is that you can have racism without having a racist.

Therefore, racism exists merely as a philosophical concept and not a socio-political reality made manifest by small minded paranoid people with talk shows.

Finding a racist is like capturing Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster. Although there are people who have documented proof that they exist, to find one and put him on display is a different story.

So, the town hall militias see themselves as merely upholding that oft overlooked part of the Constitution that gives them the right to overthrow the government.

It must be noted that there is a double standard when it comes to the public expression of white rage as opposed to black rage. I just can't imagine a couple of hundred black "militants" banging on the door at the next city council meeting without the city's finest coming out in full riot gear, bustin' heads and giving them some electric shock therapy courtesy of a taser.

Should African Americans be alarmed that there are "lynch mobs" of angry white folks organizing in the backrooms of country clubs across America, plotting, as we speak, diabolical ways to take back their country.

Ya darn tootin'.

In the South, where I reside, we still translate the traditional Southern call of "Yee Hawww!" to mean, "find a long rope and a tall tree."

So yes, there is cause for concern.

I can even see the chronically naive, GOP head, Michael Steele forgetting his wallet and showing up, unexpectedly, one night at GOP headquarters.

"Hey guys, what are you doing here so late and what's with the white bed sheets and kerosene? Somebody throwin' a toga party?"

This looks like it's gonna be a long hot Indian summer.

I'm just waiting for Leonardo DiCaprio to do a movie called "Do the White Thing" with Ted Nugent performing a country western rap, "Fight for White Power" on the soundtrack.

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots
He can be reached at (919) 451-8283 or

Saturday, August 8, 2009

NWSF Exclusive: The Genetics of Genocide

Irritated Genie at Know Bookstore
NWSF Exclusive: The Genetics of Genocide

Paul Scott

When NC Judge Howard Manning used "academic genocide" to describe what was happening to students in the Halifax County school system, last March, most people just dismissed it as a catchy catch phrase. Few really understood the significance of the word "genocide."

Webster's dictionary defines genocide as "the deliberate and systematic destruction of a racial, political, or cultural group." Therefore, genocide is not committed by accident but is a well thought out system to destroy a race, physically and mentally.

Last night, a lecturer known only as "The Irritated Genie of Souffes" spoke on the subject of genocide and it's impact on cultures of color at the Know Book Store in Durham, NC.

During the lecture, the Irritated Genie traced the history of genocide back to when Christopher Columbus first came into contact with the indigenous people of the western hemisphere to the present.

"Whites are calculating ways to kill us, " he said. "It's not about hatred, its about the truth."

He sited the examples of the way that germ warfare in the form of small pox in blankets was used to exterminate the Native American and how the entire ingenious population of Tasmania was wiped out by Europeans.

The fact that the genocide of the Native Americans is celebrated by the naming of the mascots of football teams was not lost on the lecturer.

He also talked about the genocide committed in African countries such as the Congo by Belgium King Leopold.

The most striking part of the lecture was when he tied the history of genocide to the present plight of African Americans, citing everything from guns and crack to the number of abortion clinics in the black community. It must be noted that the connection between abortion and black genocide has also been mentioned by white ministers such as Pat Robertson of the 700 Club.

Hip Hop was not spared as he pointed out the financing of pioneer gangsta rap group NWA (Niggas With Attitude) by white investors (Jerry Heller) and how the lyrics of some of the rappers contribute to the genocide of young black males.

The lecture served as a wake up call for those who believe that the mis-education and mass incarcerations of black people are due to some cataclysmic accident.

"Genocide is a process," he said.

The Irritated Genie's website is

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots He can be reached at

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Lil Wayne Comes to NC Amidst Controversy Over Slave Song

Lil Wayne Comes to NC Amidst Controversy

Paul Scott

Lil Wayne aka Dwayne Carter is, definitely, one of the hottest rappers on the planet. Not only does he sell millions of Cd's but he gets shout outs from the President of the United States. However, as the rapper prepares to bring his "America's Most Wanted" tour to Raleigh, North Carolina this Saturday, a storm is brewing over his latest song "Whip it" (Like a Slave) with his homies Dem Franchize Boyz.

Not only does the song, which has outraged black activists across the country, make a mockery of the worst atrocity in world history but it also uses whipping a slave as a metaphor for cooking crack cocaine.

How is it that with a black man as the leader of the free world, rappers like Lil Wayne still have such a slave mentality ?

It boggles the mind of Durham NC rapper and educator AK Uhuru, as well.

"If you have any understanding of what we have gone through...I just don't understand "Whip it Like a Slave," he says.

At 26 years old the Macon Ga native Uhuru is ,physically, the same age as Lil Wayne but years ahead mentally. He does, however, admit that Lil Wayne may consider what he does, art and one man's trash is another man's treasure.

"I hate to trash this man's character but he does a good job of doing that himself."

Lil Wayne recently raised eyebrows when he and partner, Drake brought underage girls on stage during the recent Black Entertainment Television Awards while performing a song with questionable lyrics about women.

Uhuru is not without controversy, himself stating that he was recently thrown off stage because a club owner thought his problack, Afrocentric rhymes were "racist." But yet, songs about drug dealing seem to be embraced by the masses without protest.

Although, Uhuru may not have the fancy cars and clothes of a Lil Wayne, he has something that money can't buy; self respect.

"Lil Wayne has everything except Freedom," he says.

Maybe something good will come out of the "Whip it Like a Slave," controversy, after all. I mean, if the controversy surrounding Harvard professor Henry Skip Gates and Cambridge police officer, James Crowley could spark a national debate on racial profiling, maybe "Whip It Like a Slave" can start a much needed dialogue about Hip Hop.

Hey, if Gates and Crowley can squash their beef over beer and pretzels maybe Uhuru and LIL Wayne can squash their's over a 40oz of Vitamin water.

AK Uhuru's website is email

AK UHURU Speaks on "Whip it Like a Slave."

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots He can be reached at or (919) 451-8283

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The 8/4 Freedom Way Show

Below is a clip of the 8/4 Freedom Way Show on LA Station KPFK. My segment is about 35minutes into the show where we discuss the global impact of "Whip it Like a Slave" and the history of the attacks on political Hip Hop.

Monday, August 3, 2009

TRUTH Minista and Chuck D Discuss Whip it Like a Slave

Below is a link to the 8/2 "On the Real" program. We discuss "Whip it Like a Slave" at the 16 minute mark:

TRUTH Minista on in LA 8/4

I am scheduled to be a guest on KPFK's "Freedom Now" program at around 8:20PM PST/11:20PM EST to discuss the "Whip it Like a Slave" controversy.

To listen live:

TRUTH Minista on in Philly 8/3

I'm scheduled to be on WURD in Philadelphia today at 6PM EST to discuss the "Lil Wayne Whippin' it Like a Slave" article.

To listen live:

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Lil Wayne: Whippin' It like a Slave in Black August

Lil Wayne: Whippin' it like a Slave in Black August

Paul Scott

"Young boys without substance or content.
You better slow your speed stop the nonsense."
The Power Chill Rob G

A flick came out in the mid 90's called "Tales from the Hood," it was kinda like a ghetto version of "Scared Straight;" only with zombies. Perhaps the best part of the movie dealt with a gangsta named Krazy K who was undergoing some heavy sci fi rehabilitation by being forced to relive scenes of the many murders of black folks that he had committed against a backdrop of lynchings and cross burnings. After listening to the latest youtube hit "Whip it "(Like a Slave), I wonder if such a rehab session would work on Lil Wayne? Naw, he'd probably just sit there with that spaced out permanent grin on his face sippin' Sizzurp through a styrofoam cup and mumbling auto tune lyrics as visions of black death flash before his eyes.

This month is known as Black August, a time when activists recognize the August 21, 1971 state execution of revolutionary George Jackson via an alleged prison escape attempt. Not to mention it is a month rich in black history, including the births of Marcus Garvey and Fred Hampton. Unfortunately, it is also a month when Lil Wayne and the America's Most Wanted Tour will be hitting cities across the country.

Unlike other rappers, Lil Wayne aka Weezy has never prided himself as being the "Malcolm X of the Hip Hop generation" and when he has his frequent run ins with the law he isn't all over the TV yellin' that he is "a black man being persecuted in America just for being black" a la Dr. Henry "Skip" Gates.

He is what he is, a thug; a thug with a college education but never the less, a thug. So there is very little that would come out of his gold toothed grill that would surprise me.

However, his new collaboration with Dem Franchize Boyz got my attention on several different levels.

The song, which is the latest Internet sensation, has been generating thousands of hits on social networking sites. While some will argue that Lil Wayne and the Boyz are not talking about literally tying someone to an old oak and pulling out a bullwhip but are metaphorically referring to cooking up crack, that makes the song even that much sicker as it embraces the genocide of black people, past and present.

While some may quickly point to the ignorance of the rappers to blame for "Whip it," the finger should really be pointed at the ignorance of a black community that would allow such a song without protest.

When I say ignorance, I am not talking about the negative connotation of lacking intelligence but the functional definition of lacking proper information in regards to the history of African people in this country.

The major problem when discussing the matter of slavery and race overall, in this country is a lack of a proper point of reference in order to put the discussion in the proper context.

For the last century, the issue of slavery has been glossed over by a Hollywood that was more than happy to give us the happy -go- lucky Uncle Remus type or the mammy who was happy to birth massa's babies. Matter of fact, for most Americans, the image of slavery does not get any more graphic than "Kunta Kinte" getting 40 lashes for not accepting the slave name, "Toby."

Also, the educational system of this country has relegated any discussion of black history to a 28 day period in February and the content of that discussion does not, in any way, seek to explore the depths of the brutality visited upon the victims of the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade confining it to a rosey picture painted of a post Emancipation America that merely substituted one form of slavery (chattel) for another (economic).

It must also be noted that while physical slavery was horrific it was the mental enslavement that has been the most destructive. For long after the physical chains are gone, the mental chains remain.

While many may say that this mentality is exclusive to the ' hood, it has historically been the black middle class that discouraged any identification with Africa, therefore pre-1865 history was a taboo subject for the upwardly mobile black bourgeoisie.

As Dr. Carter G. Woodson wrote in 1933, "the mis-educated Negro joins the opposition with the objection that the study of the Negro keeps alive questions which should be forgotten."

So the severity of the slave trade was lost on future generations.

This is also exhibited among members of a Hip Hop generation who will constantly debate the lyrical prowess of rappers who celebrate the abuse of black women and glorify black fratricide but will shy away from any mention of the heinous crimes committed against black people by Europeans.

So we are left with an overly simplistic understanding of the thought process that allows songs like "Whip It" to be embraced in 2009.

This lack of historical depth is exacerbated by the fact that many perceive that we are living in a "post racial" America where the outrage over thousands of examples of police brutality against black men can can be squashed over beer and pretzels.

As Bruce Bridges writes in his book "Reclaiming the African Mind, "the intent of the system of slavery was to rob the African man of his responsibilities of manhood and emotionally castrate him."

While rappers like Jay Z have dedicated themselves to DOA (the death of the auto tune) we must dedicate ourselves to DOI (the death of ignorance) by raising our voices against 'Whip It Like a Slave."

We must do this in honor of those whose lives we celebrate in August and whose deaths we mourn.

As Soledad brother George Jackson once wrote:

"When I revolt, slavery dies with me. I refuse to pass it down . The terms of my existence are founded on that."

Paul Scott writes for No Warning Shots
He can be reached at (919) 451-8283

TRUTH Minista on Air America Tonight 8/2

My segment on "On the Real" w/Chuck D is scheduled for 11:50PM EST tonight. I'm gonna speak on a very crucial matter in Hip Hop right now that's gonna tick a lot of people off but it has to be said.

to listen: