Remembering Hurricane Katrina

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We should never forget what took place 8 years ago in the city of New Orleans. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina the levees broke and massive flooding engulfed the city. What took place in the aftermath was something that should never be erased from our collective memories.


Part One of testimony given on behalf of Katrina victims by an eyewitness who worked to save lives in New Orleans, former Black Panther Malik Raheim. Includes a mix of music by Kanye West, Gil Scott-Heron, and reporting from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Hard Knock Radio_Katrina Tribunal pt1

Part Two of Malik Raheim‘s searing testimony about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, white vigilantes, and the lack of emergency response to the victims.

Hard Knock Radio_Katrina Tribunal pt2

We continue with testimony from the Hurricane Katrina Tribunals, and updates on local events.

Hard Knock Radio Katrina Tribunal pt3


Rapper Rick Ross Explains His Song Was just a Big Misunderstanding-He Loves Women

Rick RossRapper Rick Ross appeared on a radio show on q93.3 in New Orleans and attempted to do some damage control by explaining the lyrics to his song..U.O.E.N.O. (you ain’t even know it)..In the song he describes what many call a ‘recipe for rape’ , where he brags about slipping a molly into a woman’s drink, taking her home and having sex, all while she is under the influence and doesn’t know..

The firestorm it set off has been widespread, including a big article in today’s Washington Post that includes a petition demanding key record executives be held accountable.. You can peep that article HERE..

In the article Industryears co-founder Paul Porter tells the Washington Post

Porter goes on to argue that artists should not be solely responsible for their lyrical content. According to him, the bar is being set increasingly lower and many are relying on shock value for mass appeal. This might explain why it seems the lyrical content gets progressively worse in its promotion of violence and drugs. And with media outlets not doing the best job in self-policing the airwaves, references to “Molly” and other drugs continuously get heard on the radio and in music videos.

“Somebody is responsible at every record label for what gets approved,” says Porter. “These are the people that we never talk about. The guys that profit the most never get talked about. Until the pressure is at the top – the bottom is never going to change. Rick Ross is just a pawn.”

There are times when I question the power of our voices against these massive corporate machines. What could we write/say that hasn’t already been written/said? What could we do that would actually hurt their bottom line? And if we reach one artist, aren’t there hundreds of others who are just the same?

Rick Ross in his interview says that he has love for women and they are sacred. He refers to them as Queens and says he condemns rape..He claims his lyrics were a big misunderstanding and that its important for artists to clarify.. He starts talking about the song 4;26 into the 8 minute intv..

It remains to be seen how Ross’s explanation will sit with folks.. Many are upset at the stations who promote such songs and are still pushing for them to pull that and other songs that celebrate rape culture..

HBO’s Treme Actor Ameer Baraka Joins Oprah’s Blackboard Wars

HBO’s Treme Actor Ameer Baraka Joins Oprah’s Blackboard Wars Ameer Baraka is many things: a model for Master P‘s No Limit Apparel brand, an actor in the acclaimed HBO drama series Treme and FOX‘s “The Unit”, a producer, a director, a fitness enthusiast…and a man with a criminal history. Now, the 36-year old is taking on the role of a lifetime―himself. It sounds like the easiest part to play in front of a camera, but the reality is completely different. The story he’s telling isn’t just his own, but those stories of hundreds of children in New Orleans who are on the fast-track to a life in prison, without redemption, without hope. Having experienced first-hand the worst society has to offer, Baraka has risen above his past and more importantly, wants his rising tide to lift the spirits, hopes and dreams of every young man and woman who thinks they have no alternatives.

His web series “N.O.L.A. Life,” co-produced by Danny Garcia (What She Wants For Christmas, Who Did I Marry?) and Baraka himself, dares to show it all. The documentary series, described as “the truest, grittiest, most realistic depiction of New Orleans life ever filmed,” explains not only how life is for the young men and women on the streets, but more importantly how that life can be different. As a young man, Baraka experienced the hardship of growing up without a father. A mother and grandmother can provide love, but as he notes, “A woman cannot raise a man.” Without the strength, without the discipline afforded by a positive male role model, living in the Calliope housing development, he fell into a life of drugs, crime, and violence by age fourteen. It wasn’t until he landed in prison and met older, reformed convicts who saw something special in him that he learned the secret to breaking this vicious cycle. Preaching at children does not work―mentoring them does.

Two years’ experience running a mentoring program at Booker T. Washington School in New Orleans backs him up. Considered some of the highest-risk youth in the state, Baraka’s engagement brings real results to a setting long thought beyond repair. Reaching out to the intelligent young minds he sees before him, Baraka challenges them to channel their energies and impulses in positive directions and faith-based initiatives, and the results speak for themselves: drug use, fights, suspensions and expulsions at Booker T. Washington are down across the board. To further these ends, he created the Ameer Baraka Give A Hand Fund, which provides financial assistance to children so they can attend school in better areas of New Orleans. Visit his website at to learn more about his life and work.

On Saturday, March 16th at 9pm, you will see and hear Ameer Baraka’s powerful story on Oprah Winfrey‘s OWN Network show, “Blackboard Wars”. You will get to know Ameer and the young men and women he mentors and engages every day. And you will come to believe, just as he does, that one man really can change the world.

see more HERE