Emmet Till’s Family Pens an Open Letter to LIl Wayne But Will It Make a Difference?

Davey-D-purple-frameThere’s still a lot of fall out from all the drama Lil Wayne caused when he penned lyrics that vulgarly compared Emmet Till to a woman’s body part. It angered many, especially those in the Civil Rights era, including singer Stevie Wonder…People spoke out, went in on Lil Wayne.. The song was pulled and in good form Lil Wayne went on to kick up more dust and make headlines by dissing the Miami Heat, the NBA and the wife of basketball star Chris Bosh who he publicly claimed to have slept with…

Recently the family of Emmet Till spoke out and sent an ‘open letter’ to Lil Wayne via Vibe Magazine …You can peep the entire letter here.. http://www.vibe.com/article/vibe-exclusive-open-letter-family-emmett-till-lil-wayne 

Emmit Till Letter

It’s good that the Till family wrote an open letter to Lil Wayne..As they noted he was more than just a face for the Civil Rights Movement.. He was their blood..Their reaction would be one that we should expect from any family who’s loved ones were tragically lost, yet inspired a movement through that lost.. For example, if Lil Wayne had penned lyrics dissing Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin or Hadiya Pendleton, a compelling reaction from the family would be expected..

LilWayne-225With that being said, from all the hoopla and outrage this generated, its more than obvious Lil Wayne could care less and while its good he was publicly addressed his transgressions represent something larger..Collective ignorance.. Sadly many of our youth and I dare say adults, both old and young don’t know Emmet Till. Yeah they may have heard the name, but most hardly know the story.. They couldn’t tell you with certainty the state his murder took place in, the year, the date or the back story that led to his mom deciding to open the casket for the world to see..That to me is tragic and collectively we have to take major steps for that to change.

Overall Wayne dissing Emmet Till is a logical next step when you consider all the things we let slide in the name of free speech, artistic envelop pushing, good ole fashion ‘urban humor’ or sparking controversy as a good marketing ploy..It’s on our watch we have allowed ethnic studies programs to be eliminated in Arizona via state law.. It’s on our watch we allowed history text books to be change and rewritten where in 2013 there is a de-emphasis on Black History.. We’ve rewarded and honored individuals who push or own outlets that push buffoonery while downplaying or completely overlooking those who put in work day in and day out to elevate and inspire young minds in our community. In short we have allowed the dumbing down of our community to occur, which leads to people no longer thinking critically and in the long run packs private prisons..

LA Reid

LA Reid

The fact that his label under the leadership of LA Reid let that slide and only pulled it after being pressured was even more tragic.. If Lil Wayne had dissed one of Reid’s loved ones or any number of icons who represent influential groups with ties to the industry that record would’ve been stopped in its tracks.. For example, if Wayne had made vulgar references to Holocaust victims, folks up the chain of command within the label would shut that noise down without being asked. Why? Because the blow back would be epic with a very clear message of zero tolerance for that sort of disrespect.. In the case of  Lil Wayne or the label that distributes him, there is likely not to be any zero tolerance. He’ll be on the next BET, Soul Train Grammy Awards …Those who put him on will go unchallenged and it’ll be business as usual until the next Black history icon is dissed.. LA Reid will go about his daily routine allowing us to  experience a healthy dose of music that glorifies any number of pathologies all in the name of artistic freedom and making good ole fashion money from audiences outside the Black community who feast on the our pathologies being displayed.



20 comments on “Emmet Till’s Family Pens an Open Letter to LIl Wayne But Will It Make a Difference?

  1. More blame here goes to LA Reid. Becasuse without his consent where would youngster be ?
    Lil Wayne for now is allowed that wiggle room because his so called boss looks the other way. Now Lil Wayne will probably tell you if he gets the squeeze; any label will want ME….. not so, once artists start moving arlound labels for the most part they take a downturn.
    But anyways; who really cares what lil wayne says !!!! Any jacka.. with a mic can run their mouth. He is either looking for a response or just been smokin too much motherfn weed or both.
    Rather than open letter how about : I was going to send you an open letter but after thinkin about it : its best you check yourself into rehab-then we can have a sit down because right now you aint makin sense and your goin down the road of a high net worth junkie !!!!!

    When I was doin my thing ; when I said the word sit-down : I would have thought dude caught larangitis for months.

  2. It’s hard to know even to begin to comment on this subject… our horrible education system… our survival of the fittest society… The disassociation with our past and how many of us including Lil W even HAVE an opportunity to earn any living let alone a good one. It is perplexing how large populations of laborers have no connection with the strikers who had their heads bashed or worse so that we can work a 40 hour work week… or get a paid vacation… or healthcare… or a minimum wage and so much more… if we are lucky enough to even have a job… yet they allow anti labor forces to be swept into positions of power… governors, state legislators etc… who methodically dismantle all our forefathers struggled for for centuries… so I guess it’s not too surprising that a person like lil w can not know or care about the building block struggles and moments in history that helped us get to a point where he can make extraordinary amounts of money and a Black man can be elected to the Presidency of the United States. I’m a hopeful person but I don’t see a way out of this ignorance malaise…

  3. I was a girl in south Louisiana,when this happened. It affected me then and now. I’m a former educator and I’m dismayed by many of our youths. I’m also the mother of three African American males, who have made strides in their times. When Emmit Till was murdered, I was scared, angry, confused. When I got a Jet magazine and saw those pictures, I was sickened. Still can’t understand how someone could beat someone like that. He was an innocent youth. I applaud his mom for being so strong to allow us to see those pictures. I expect lil Wayne or whoever will in his later years(if he makes it) will talk bout how stupid he was to or say such hurtful words. I cry out to you youths of today. Think! Think! Before you act!
    I’m just a 69 year old retired teacher in a small southern town, but I know of what i peak.God bless!

  4. The expression “could care less” indicates that he cares. It by no means conveys the idea that he doesn’t care. Stop using nonsensical phrases.

  5. Lil Wayne and these kids do not know the sacrifices of the past like Emmett till Malcolm x killed over white women or there beleifs they don’t care that’s why they shoot people like hadiya who was a by stander no empathy only pay check la Reid should take Wayne off his label from ame church choir Singer I respect Katherine Christina Beyonce and Adele mjb Wayne is a joke like kanye though and Alicia keys real music girl on fire respect of intelligence can the parents of emment til Sue or his family I would Sue the whole label and demand justice for Martin don’t know who killed them

  6. Peace Davey, thanks for dropping the truth with a critical lens. The letter has more significance to the listeners of rap music than it will have on Lil Wayne. Hopefully this opens conversations between adults and young people about the value of human life and the legacy of racism (white supremacy), as well as the internalized self-hate (another manifestation of white supremacy) which Lil Wayne expresses often. “Beautiful black woman – I bet that bitch look better red.” “My daughter will be my first and last darkskinned child.” “I’m rich like a white man.”
    I wrote about this 4 years ago. http://mckswift.tumblr.com/post/43240277718/my-4-year-old-post-on-lil-waynes-internalized-white

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