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A recent RebelPundit video shows Chicago activists criticizing the black leadership and the Democratic party for failing black communities and has now gone viral. In the first few days since its release, it has already racked up more than 750,000 views, and has been featured on mainstream television, talk radio, and cable news.

One of the primary accusations the video makes is that black leaders are exploiting their communities and profiting off of them instead of trying to improve them. But this type of profiteering is not limited to politics. Urban media looks to be equally complicit in the exploitation of black communities.

Take the activist video.

Despite the fact that it features black men discussing problems facing black communities, not a single so-called urban media outlet has featured it. Instead, they continue to shovel the same irrelevant, harmful schlock that they have been passing off as news and entertainment for years.

If you type “urban media” into google, the top hit is World Star Hip Hop. If you go to World Star Hip Hop right now, the self-proclaimed CNN of the ghetto, the top videos on the site talk about “the realest ni##a in the world, gettin money, f#ckin yo’ girl, shootin ni**as, tight p#ssy, team little d#ck” etc. Their words, not mine.

All Hip Hop claims to be “a valuable resource for hip hop on the internet.”  If you go to AllHipHop.com, you will see that the value consists of finding out who just dissed 50 cent, reading about out who wanted to pull a knife on Fat Joe, asking the probing question, “Will Twerking Bring Down Dej Loaf?” and investigating the latest rumor that Birdman might be… wait for it… gay. You know, the important things.

There are the more traditional media outlets, like BET, Essence Magazine, The Grio, and The Root. But, those sites aren’t black owned. They are owned by Viacom, Time Warner, MSNBC and the Washington Post, respectively. They are urban media outlets controlled by white people. But even they don’t provide a platform for discussion:

…they claim to be an unbiased news source and claim to hire objective journalists and provide a platform for the full range of thinking and commentary within the Black community. They fail on all accounts.

They do just as much damage or even more to the Black community as rap music. In fact, it can be argued that foul-mouth rap artists stands a better chance of being accurately portrayed on those news sites than a Republican, Black or White.

As a foul-mouthed rap artist myself, I have to agree.

While trying to promote the video for Call the Cops, I quickly discovered that no urban outlets were interested in discussing it, let alone playing it. Although the song and the message spoke directly to the kinds of police brutality that has been all over the news and has plagued black communities nationwide, not a single urban media outlet showed any interest at all. And yet, these same outlets continuously feature artists promoting murder, violence, ignorance and death.

Why?

The classic response is to blame corporate greed:

Corporations are now earning billions of dollars every year mass promoting music and imagery that many consider to be destructive to the African American community.  White-owned companies like BET and VH1 liberally share the images of black men as thugs, black women as hoochies, and black youth as drug using, violent criminals who love to waste their money.

But, as the Chicago activists pointed out, it’s incorrect to assume that only white people are guilty of this. Some of the worst imagery and stereotypes you can see are being perpetuated on black communities by black owned media outlets like World Star Hip Hop:

With its heavy use of physical violence and racial stereotypes….is one of the most culturally damaging media platforms in existence today.

So why do they keep doing it? Because they are making a lot of money. It costs thousands a day to keep a video on the front page of World Star, and promoters and record companies gladly pay it. Just like the politicians, the owners of these sites get rich exploiting the very communities they profess to serve.

The artists are no better.

At the 2014 BET Hip Hop awards, a reporter interviewed Young Thug and asked him his views on the Mike Brown case in Ferguson, Missouri:

Reporter: …What do you think needs to be changed in the way that black men are policed in america?

Young Thug: Leave that all with them critics and the laws and all that other sh#t. We havin fun, we iced out, we havin money, that’s how we doin it

Reporter: So you don’t feel it’s the artist’s place to speak out on social issues?

Young Thug: No

Young Thug is rich because his community cares about him. But now that he’s rich, he could care less what happens in his community.  He’s having fun. He’s iced out. He has money. Forget about them.

The fact is, urban media does not care about the black community. Neither do urban artists. They only care about making money at its expense. They do it by promoting a bankrupt culture that glorifies ignorance and violence, and they justify it by appealing to materialistic greed.

And it’s all by design.

When hip hop first came on the scene, it was anything but violent. Pioneers like the Sugar Hill Gang were funny, energetic, even corny. Just listen to Rappers Delight.

The idea of cultivating “threatening images” came from record execs like Russell Simmons who needed a marketing angle to help their acts stand out from the crowd:

You also have to remember the state of black music in the mid 80’s… soft, unagressive music (and nonthreatening images) constituted the black music mainstream. So the first chance I got, I did exactly the opposite.

But perception has a way of becoming reality.

According to Simmons, gangster rap groups like NWA soon began to borrow “the aggressive style and swagger of acts like Run DMC and Public Enemy.” But they didn’t just borrow them. They took them to a whole new level.

NWA member Andre Young, aka Dr. Dre, quickly found out that rapping about violence was a golden goose:

“America loves violence. America is obsessed with murder…I think murder sells a lot more than sex. They say sex sells. I think murder sells.”

He was right. From the seeds planted by Simmons at Def Jam came execs like Suge Knight and labels like Death Row. But the artists at these labels were no longer cultivating an image. They were living the life.

Credibility became a factor. And that may have been a tipping point. Because the best way to rap about violence credibly is to be incredibly violent.

That’s why there is no interest in the music industry to see black communities improve. Violence is a billion dollar crop, and black communities are where a large part of that crop is farmed. Threatening to improve the community is like threatening to burn that crop to the ground. And nobody making money on it – black or white – wants to see that happen.

UPDATE: Since the publishing of this article, AllHipHop.com has posted the #ChicagoUnchained video, however, it is buried on their site (not accessible from the home page or video page), which requires people click through their “communities” page and then through an alternate “videos” page to see the video. In other words, they posted the video, so they can say they posted the video, but no one will see it. The question is why?

4 Responses

  1. L.T. Hill

    So on point. How can I become involved in this movement. Especially getting the truth out about these liberal democrats?

    Reply
    • Rob Hustle

      The best way that I can think of doing it is by using your talents and spreading the word. Do you write? Make music? Make art? I started by making music (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlY9C6pzxKc), then moved on to writing articles. I hope to do documentaries in the future.

      Starting out is always difficult, but you would be surprised how many people you can reach if you just take a stand for what you believe in. There are numerous platforms for publishing your opinions depending on what you choose to do. If you need any help or advice, please contact me. I am not an expert but I will help you the best I can.

      Reply

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