How many dead Black children does it take to get a Sandy Hook response?

Black death has become an addiction, a political football when convenient and a marketing tool…it is also something with each passing day can’t be ignored…If we are not bothered by this, then something is seriously wrong….Here’s a video of Hadiya in 6th grade speaking out on gangs.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x60rR-CZ-A4

Below is a powerful essay from a Chicagoan who is all too familiar with the daily carnage going on in her city…

How many dead Black children does it take to get a Sandy Hook response?

15 year old Hadiya was shot and killed in a random act of violence in Chicago

15 year old Hadiya was shot and killed in a random act of violence in Chicago

Do you remember? Remember when you were young and carefree? Think back on how excited you would have been with an early dismissal from school into warm weather and a park nearby. Remember wanting to just cool out for a minute, hang on to the laughter and silly antics of  your friends before heading home to chores and studying? Time travel to the time when life was so full and promising, back when you had the zeal and energy to really live it?

How old were you back then? When did that all end for you?

Well for Hadiya Pendleton 15years old was her time. A baby really, just getting her taste of life’s promises. A scholar attending King Preparatory High School on the south side of Chicago. An enthusiastic student, a member of her school’s volley ball team and it’s band that just performed at President Obama’s Inauguration, a trip to Paris on the horizon as a part of an exchange program. Young and carefree, yet it ended much too soon for Hadiya. Her young life snatched just as she was getting to the good part; her life counted in the number of children whose lives have been cut down before they could really fully create a memory.

continue reading this essay HERE

 

Jeff Chang: The Influence Street Gangs Had on the Evolution of Hip Hop

Author Jeff Chang

Straight from the Davey D Archives, we pull out an interview we did with author Jeff Chang back in August of 2008 at the National Political Hip Hop Convention about his book ‘Can’t Stop Won’t Stop‘. Here we sit down and talk about his perspective on street gangs and how they influenced Hip Hop culture.

Chang talks to us about the culture of abandonment in the late 60s and early 70s when many whites fled the Bronx in what we call ‘white flight’. This left many of the areas impoverished with its decreased tax base. This in turn led to what Chang described as chaos which led to the explosions of gangs who attempted to create and enforce some sort of order.

The gangs grew in size and began to war against one another until it reached a critical point where folks reached a fork in the road. Should they make peace and transform the neighborhoods or continue down a path of destruction. In 1971 the gangs of the Bronx got together and forged a Peace Treaty. The cult movie Warriors was inspired by this Peace Treaty.

Chang noted the 71 peace Treaty paved the way for Hip Hop as it allowed folks from all over to go in various neighborhoods and artistically express themselves via dance, emceeing and deejaying. The birth of Park Jam came about.  You can peep our interview below…Chang is currently working on a book about race and multi-culturlism as a follow-up to his excellent book.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OU0lINPtCb0

In our interview I made reference to the 40th anniversary of the Notorious Black Spades who was the largest gang in new York during those early days. The Spades eventually morphed into the Organization and later the Mighty Zulu Nation under the leadership of Afrika Bambaataa who at the time was a key warlord.

Karate Charlie of the Ghetto Brothers and Bam Bam of the Black Spades

We decided to include the videos to that gathering so you can get a richer understanding about the influence.. Included in these clips are members of the Ghetto Brothers who Chang writes extensively about in his book. We also see Black Spade leader Bam Bam. He was the one who gave Afrika Bambaataa permission to use the name.. In these clips you see Bam address younger gangsters in the most intense ways..

We also hear from Hip Hop legend Popmaster Fabel of Rocksteady Crew and Zulu Nation who is working on a documentary about the early gangs called The Apache Line.  In fact he was filming that day.  We also hear from original B-Boy and Zulu nation member Charlie Rock who talks about the White Gangs called Greasers who roamed the Bronx and were  mortal enemies to the large Black and Puerto Rican gangs. he explains how Hip Hop emerged from the chaos underscoring Chang’s earlier points..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nwsdYU4yKM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGYTeRUWK5k

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ufPt8g617I&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycREFrL6-RA&feature=channel

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

 

Dear Lil Wayne Stop Promoting the Bloods

Dear Lil Wayne Stop Promoting the Bloods

By Casey Gane-McCalla November 4, 2009 3:58 pm

http://theurbandaily.com/news/casey-gane-mccalla/dear-lil-wayne-stop-promoting-the-bloods/

Dear Lil Wayne,

My friend brought over your mixtape , No Ceilings, the other day and I gave it a listen. I have to say I was impressed. You clearly are a talented rapper with an excellent ability to ride beats, clever wordplay and smart punchlines.

Still one thing about the mixtape disturbed me. Your constant references to the Blood gang and soo woops seem like something a 15 year old kid might be saying, not a veteran rapper who has been in the game for more than 10 years.

I realize that many people in poor neighborhoods join gangs because of peer pressure, the threat of other gangs, for a way to make money and for  a sense of family. Still, you have been a professional rapper earning money since you were 14. What reason did you have for joining the Bloods? It seems that you are claiming the Bloods to increase your street credibility and help your record sales.

After the Derrion Albert beating, we see the negative effects gangs have on African American youth. Everyday, gang violence leads to teenagers in the hood getting stabbed, shot or jumped. As the “Best Rapper Alive,” when you start bigging up a gang it makes it seem cool to your young fans. These young fans who use your slang, dress like you dress and idolize you, now want to be in a gang like you.

I know you don’t think you’re a role model. Still your record label, BET and urban and pop radio are constantly marketing your music to children between the ages of 10 and 14. When they play you Lollipop single on BET, the kids who watch you buy your album and mixtapes and get to hear all your Blood gang propaganda.

Hopefully, your time in jail will give you time to reflect about your actions. Gang violence is a big problem for young black males.  In L.A. two thirds of all youth killings are gang related. Gang members are 60 times more likely to be killed than non gang members.

Being in the Bloods might be cool for you, but for the thousands of kids in the hood who join, it is a deadly choice, that far to often leads them to jail or the morgue.

Please, for the sake of your impressionable fans and the image of African Americans across the world, stop promoting the Bloods. You are a very clever young man with more power than you may know.

Sincerely

Casey Gane-McCalla

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RszyKLfvxpc&feature=player_embedded

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGYTeRUWK5k