Friday, June 24, 2011

Boycott Lil Wayne?

Blogger and scholar of, Dr. Boyce Watkins has announced his boycott of rapper Lil Wayne. Watkins writes:

I love hip-hop. I want to support it. I try to understand those who are a few years behind me and support their efforts to become empowered and thoughtful individuals. But after hearing the lyrics from a Lil Wayne song (an artist who’d already pushed me to the edge), I had to take a moment of pause and make a quick comment regarding how he has firmly positioned himself as an enemy of the black community. In the song, “We Be Steady Mobbin,” Lil Wayne says this:

But I can fuck your girl and make her nut for me
Then slut for me, then kill for me, then steal for me
And of course it’ll be your cash
And I’ll murder that bitch and send her body back to your ass”

To be fair, Biggie and NWA - during the golden era of hip hop- lyrics were consistently more profane than Wayne's.

The problem is more acute now because, once upon a time, for every Biggie, there was a KRS 1; for every NWA, there was a Public Enemy; and for every Lil Kim, there was a Queen Latifah.

Now don't get me wrong, I think Wayne can be witty, funny and insightful at times. Wayne is vastly more talented and creative than most of his competition.

Couple years back, I worked part-time at a hip hop club and although I have never purchased nor downloaded Lil Wayne's music, I found some of his stuff a guilty pleasure (just being honest).

I just wish there were more alternatives for hip hop heads - ya know, rappers that can both bless the mic and educate the mind by dropping a lil science in their rhymes.

But each generation has to select its cultural and artistic (or not) icons for self-definition. And as the ever quotable Charles Barkley might say,
Lil Wayne ain't no damn role model.

My issue with Lil Wayne is somewhat rooted in his lyrics but mainly based on the way he continues to diss our beautiful ebony hued sisters in song and off stage.

But at the end of the day, Lil Wayne is an epitome of his era - across all USA cultures, economic classes, races and demographics. This era believes, if you can laugh all the way to the bank - the hell with integrity - you are winning (thanks Charlie Sheen).

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