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Don’t Blame Hip Hop by Hasan Salaam

hassan salaamHasan Salaam

Blaming Hip-Hop for the problems in and out of our community is some real Stockholm syndrome shit. We are not to blame for the systematic attacks on our people. Long before Kool Herc spun at a party or the world heard Rappers Delight the police we killing us in cold blood. From Camden to Watts and Chicago to New Orleans there have been countless cases of police terrorism and lynchings in this country over the past 500 years. Wearing a SnapBack doesn’t give the police a right to harass and beat you, same as Trayvon wearing a hoodie shouldn’t give predators like Zimmerman a pass to kill a child. The true problem is that this country built it self and still feeds itself off of Black Death. Hip-Hop music was not there when slaves attempting to escape were tied to horses and quartered in front of the entire plantation to strike fear in men, women and children. The music was not there when Emmett Till was snatched from his bed or when the freedom riders were attacked by the side of the road. Rap music didn’t assassinate our leaders based on COINTELPRO documents and the eradication of a possible Black Messiah, the FBI did that. Hip-Hop didn’t create crack cocaine and flood it into Black & Brown neighborhoods, the CIA did that. Blaming our music ignores the fact that this is nothing new, it has been updated to suit the times but it’s nothing but Jim Crow 2.0. Hip-Hop is not the problem, in fact it has been a powerful tool to spread the truth about the injustices committed against us here in America since it’s inception. The system attempts to co-opt it based on the power it has. Hip-Hop is has spread all over the world and appealed to all as a music of the counter culture, a buck back at the system and a rise against oppression. The spirit of our culture is as brave as the Spirituals we sung on the plantation laden with hidden messages leading us from bondage. It’s as genius as Jazz and the flatted 5th’s we played from memory and improvisation while the society that danced to it wouldn’t allow itself believe we had the mental capacity to compose it. Rock & Roll, Doo-Wop, Soul, R&B, House, Go-Go, Hip-Hop and every other musical form we have created in America has been a powerful tool in our fight for Freedom, Justice and Equality.
Use it.

-Hasan Salaam
No Justice No Peace
#LifeInBlackandWhite

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