If you know me well, you know that I can't stand Jay-z. If talent and reward went hand in hand it is my opinion that he would be begging to get on open mic nights and saving up his pennies. Instead, he is one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in the world. If that isn't a lesson in the way things work then... There are people, however, to be looked down upon more. People who's station in life and actual worth are even farther out of whack. People who make me feel like Jay-Z and I are playing for the same team. These people work at FOX News.
For years now we have been asking ourselves the question, "Are these people really that dumb, or are they just playing to the rubes?" I think most have settled on: A little from column A. A little from column B. This clip pissed me off even more than usual. Maybe because it is about hip-hop. Maybe because it illustrates the clear racial/social/generational/class/intelligence divide that still separates us.
What are we supposed to be offended by here? That young black rappers use the word "nigger"? Well that is an active debate, but you are late to it and have no place in it. Are you Chuck D or Q-Tip? Are you Cornel West? What are you doing in this conversation? Holding a place for uptight, rich, white people who don't give two shits for hip-hop in the first place? Yes, I consider you an uptight white person Michelle Malkin. Have you ever been anything else?
I guess this issue gets me hotter than Tabasco (if you are a real hip-hop fan, fill in the next line and get the joke) because I love rap music in a very real way and feel that these fortunate people get paid to sit on TV and take the piss. Whether you agree that "nigger" is acceptable or not, you should not be surprised that it is used at a hip-hop show. To pretend that you are is base journalism that should be offered behind a curtain at the county fair for an extra nickel. No, check that, it isn't worth that much. Is this kind of discussion racist? Of course it is. Racist in the sense that it pretends there is no ongoing dialogue in the community that is being portrayed.
The real irony in all of this is that the controversy surround Jay-Z, who the only reason he is a VIP at the inauguration of our president is because the power structure has deemed him acceptable. It wasn't Immortal Technique or Talib Kweli sitting near the podium. It wasn't even Mos Def or Black Thought. It certainly wasn't Chuck D, Dead Prez or Michael Franti.. It wasn't even everyone's darling Kanye (George Bush hates black people) West. It was Jay-Z who has been deemed safe enough to hump Beyonce, America's debutante.
You know what gets me riled up? This. You can kill prisoners in our custody as long as you don't celebrate by saying "My president is black, nigger!" I am sure it also upset these two ladies as well.
Good thing in all of the years that we had a white president no one ever used the word "nigger." I am sure FOX would have been very unsettled.