RIP Mayor Ed Koch: He Repped a Bygone Era in NY and Was an Enemy to Hip Hop

Mayor Ed KochWoke up this morning to hear that former New York City Mayor Ed Koch had died… According to the initial reports, he passed because of heart failure. For what seemed like decades, Koch was the face and symbol of New York.. When compared to current Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his predecessor Rudy Giuliani, Koch repped the New York of what is now a bygone era.. I’d rather have Koch over these two clowns, but make no mistake Koch was not a friend.. He was just an enemy we all got used to…

For those of us into Hip Hop, Koch was a constant presence and a major thorn in the side.. The Koch I remember was one who although a ‘liberal’ Democrat didn’t have a whole lotta love for Black and Puerto Ricans. He made us the scape goat for all the ills troubling the Big Apple and long before Chief William Bratton hit the scene along with Giuliani, it was Koch who came after poor folks on so-called quality of life crimes..

It was Koch who had abandoned buildings that ran along the commuter lines in the South Bronx painted with nice colors and fake people so that people traveling into the city would not see or noticed the devastation of areas many of us called home..The irony of that was Koch launched an all out war on spray can (graffiti) artists while he, himself was literally having walls painted in the Bronx…It was on Ed Koch’s watch that we saw the brutal death of graf artist Michael Stewart at the hands of NYC transit cops.. When you say Ed Koch, I think about that..

When you say Ed Koch I think of police shooting Eleanor Bumpurs to death with a 12 gauge shotgun as they tried to evict the unarmed emotionally disturbed woman from her apartment..

When you say Ed Koch, I think of the racial climate of hostility he fostered which culminated with the vicious attacks at Howard Beach when a mob of whites chased three Black teenagers across a freeway killing one.. Its hard to seperate Ed Koch from the drama he helped stir up..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZG31AbARSc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5KO2b0kEpU

The Ed Koch I remember was one who sicced the police on early b-boys/B-girls when they set up to dance in the subways or downtown at Times Square which was actually pretty seedy (Pre-Disney upliftment)..He was the ultimate hater…It made everyone go in that much harder…

The Koch I remember was one who went after Jesse Jackson pretty hard when he ran for President and shocked everyone by winning several primaries.. Koch was a big hater  and that pissed off a lot of folks at the time.. Yes Koch repped a bygone era in New York and many will miss him..I just wanna be clear about missing the bygone era where he was a constant presence vs missing him when he used us as scapegoats for political gain…

SFPD Cant do Stop and Frisk, So They Now Turned to ‘Hunting’ & ‘Wolf Packing’

San Francisco Police Officers***Update**** The folks from Poor News Network have been following this case and released the following information about the young man shown in the video…His name is Kevin Clark and he’s an 18 year old Honors college student ..He was brutalized by the SFPD for simply walking down the street? He was not charged or arrested but cited for resisting and delaying. …..

The city of San Francisco, once a home to counter-culture and folks who were free-spirited has changed for the worse over the past 5-10 years.. Borrowing a page from New York’s Michael Bloomberg, the city by the Bay has modeled itself after New York by trying to become a playground for the über rich.. Poor folks mostly Black and Brown have been gentrified out of the city as the average rent has skyrocketed to 3500 for a one bedroom..

Over the past 10 years there’s been an explosion of ugly lime green (luxury green) high rises where starting price is a million dollars.. According to Tim Redmond of the Bay Guardian in a recent radio interview on KPFA, the target audiences for these new buildings are world travelers who seek to have homes in a variety of cities.. San Francisco being one of them.. His remarks underscored the landmark issue the BG called Soul of The City that focused on all htose being forced to move out of SF.. You can peep it HERE

As the SF has attempted to luxurize itself, one of the other tactics they attempted to borrow was Stop and Frisk from New York City. Mayor Ed Lee said he thought it would be a good idea, even SF is not known for being a violent city with an out of control crime problem.. many suspected that Lee would be concentrating Stop and Frisk efforts on folks living in the Tenderloin, which has a large homeless population and is an area where the mayor would like to see more high-tech companies relocate.. Twitter is already located in the tenderloin, not paying any taxes.

The other areas where many suspected Stop and Frisk would be used was in Bayview Hunters Point, the City’s last Black neighborhood.. Over the past 10 years Blacks have been moved out of SF with the population which was once a healthy 15% now less than 5%..

The other place where police repression was likely to be applied is ion the historic Mission district which is home to a very large Brown/ latino population. For folks who never been, the Mission has a similar vibe to LES/ The Village in New York, with alot of foot traffic, international flare, victorian houses which remind folks of brownstones and tons of eateries. . Many rich folks from out of town have been moving there, causing rents to rise and displacing long time residents.

San Francisco Police The Board of supervisors voted to over rule the mayor and turned down Stop and Frisk as level headed San Francisco residents made a huge stink. However, the Mayor undaunted along with his police have turned to another tactic.. Hunting or wolf packing. This how a a former San Francisco resident forced to relocate to Oakland described the tactic when she sent me this video of what she noted is this growing trend..

In the video below, you will see an example of this as  young Black man is nearly run over by a cop on the sidewalk..According to witnesses, he got into an argument with another cat his own age when police arrived upon the scene and immediately used their bikes to run him off the sidewalk…

He’s then slammed to the ground and his face mushed in the gutter for several minutes.. The suspect who is small is not resisting as more then 15 officers show up to arrest him.. The show of force is deliberate and a way of trying to intimidate residents.. It’s a damn shame to see this sort of abuse of power especially when you consider mayor Lee who was largely applauded for being the City’s first Asian-American Mayor was supposed to be a long-time Civil Rights attorney. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised as many traditional civil rights orgs and leaders has been turned the concept upside down.

This is a city who’s police department in the past year had to toss over 50 cases of trumped of felonies thanks to corruption. This is also a police department that shot a man (Kenneth Harding) and let him lay dying in the street for all to see when he couldn’t produce proof of a two dollar fare..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UDBq70mfIpQ

This video below from SF Hip Hop artist Dregs One breaks down the gentrification drama in the city by the Bay

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJdcU-4cqQ8

The Revolution Has Come… Rebel Diaz Speak Truth in Times of Turmoil

I’m so proud of Hip Hop right now… Ice Cube,  Brother Ali, Boots from the Coup, dead Prez, Jasiri X and Invincible have all dropped material in the past few weeks that has uplifted the community and inspired us to fight for better tomorrows.. Adding to that list is Rebel Diaz who skillfully sampled and flipped the chant from the Black Panthers..’The Revolution Has Come‘ and added their own 2012 twist..

It was just recently we lead rapper Rodstarz on our Hard Knock Radio show to give us crucial updates as to how things were faring under Hurricane Sandy. The day after the storm hit Rod explained to our listeners how poor folks were getting mistreated and how Mayor Michael Bloomberg had shut off power to housing projects days before the storm came..

He talked about how folks in his community had to organize themselves and make sure the elderly were taken care of because the city wasn’t going to do it..The day we did that interview there was some criticism from punditary types who lived nowhere near Rodstarz’ South Bronx neighborhood, but insisted that he was wrong with his info..They were citing press releases from Bloomberg as their source to counter Rod’s arguments.

Now that the dust is settling and the waters are receding, we see that all over NY in poor communities, there’s been neglect in the recovery efforts and was Rod was accurate and on point to the fullest with his assessment and breakdown of the situation.

Him and Rebel Diaz are and true to the spirit of ones who loves their people and seeks justice..This is a song underscores that sentiment and should not be slept on.. Turn it up and let it be the sound track to your day to day struggle for freedom..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byL3o3VMUKk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byL3o3VMUKk