Kanye West is white America’s worst nightmare. Because as much as one may attempt to dismiss him — by calling him an asshole or classless or deranged or various other adjectives that fill the comment sections of literally every article about him — you still have to turn on your regularly scheduled late night comedy program and stare him in the face. You can’t avoid Kanye. He’s made very sure of that.
Kanye is not a “new slave” in the same sense as the victims of the prison industrial complex, but he is still trapped in a world that expects him to not only be complicit with the struggle of his people, but to be appreciative that he is not one of them. And on top of all that, while he gets to exist in the world of the 1%, having the money and signifiers of success still aren’t enough to make his (white) 1% peers actually even respect him.
The ideals of Public Enemy are as relevant today as they were in the 80s, but hip-hop was nowhere near as dominant and omnipresent a cultural force as it is at this moment; to compare the reach of their messages is silly. Upper-middle class white families did not have to deal with Public Enemy if they didn’t want to. Similarly with politically-minded “noise rap” artists that have been name-dropped in reviews of Kanye’s new material — it’s all well and good for Death Grips and Blackie and even Killer Mike to espouse similar messages and sounds (and honestly, the sonic qualities of “New Slaves” and “Black Skinhead” are hardly at the top of the list of why they’re important), but none of them have anywhere near the amount of visibility and influence as Kanye, even if they did hit it first.
People in current positions of comfort and stability are so willing to dismiss the transgressive thoughts of an angry black man that they will use any convenient excuse to diminish from them; if someone says something that makes you uncomfortable, why not immediately change the subject to his girlfriend’s ass or that time he yelled at a papparazzi or that time he got drunk and embarrassed a white girl? When was it exactly that Kanye shifted, in the eyes of the mainstream, from lovable polo-wearing backpacker to perpetually and unanimously An Asshole? When, precisely, did everything he said get immediately categorized as a “rant” or “controversial” regardless of the actual content? I want to say it was around the time when he said that George Bush didn’t care about black people on live tv. Hmm. Odd."
New lp is gonna be ill
On this date in 1998, a Black man was dragged to his death in Jasper, TX.
Three white men with suspected ties to the Ku Klux Klan chained James Byrd, Jr. (a Black hitchhiker), to the back of a pickup truck and dragged him to his death. His head, neck, and right arm were found about a mile from his mangled torso. A wrench with the name of one of the suspects on it was found near the body. Byrd had been dragged about two miles on a narrow, winding asphalt road. [Continue reading at the African American Registry.]
For further reading and research, also see:
A Death in Texas: A Story of Race, Murder and a Small Town’s Struggle for Redemption by Dina Temple-Raston. <link>
Hate Crime: The Story of a Dragging in Jasper, Texas by Joyce King. <link>
I always had hopes of being a big star. But as you get older, you aim a little lower. Everybody wants to make an impression, some mark upon the world. Then you think, you’ve made a mark on the world if you just get through it, and a few people remember your name. Then you’ve left a mark. You don’t have to bend the whole world. I think it’s better to just enjoy it. Pay your dues, and just enjoy it. If you shoot an arrow and it goes real high, hooray for you. -Dorian Corey
Diabetic high school girl beaten by police officer & arrested…for falling asleep in class
May 9, 2013
A student who was arrested and beaten for falling asleep at school is now suing an Alabama city, its police department and some school employees for civil rights violation, battery and negligent supervision and hiring. After the diabetic student fell asleep while in a room reserved for “in school suspensions,” a school police officer slammed her face into a cabinet and then arrested her. The incident occurred at a high school in Hoover, Alabama.
Ashlynn Avery, who has diabetes, asthma and sleep apnea, was suspended for cutting class, and had to sit in the in-school suspension room. While she was reading “Huckleberry Finn,” she dozed off. First, the in-school suspension supervisor walked over to her cubicle and struck it, which caused the cubicle to hit Avery’s head, according to the lawsuit. She woke up, but soon fell back asleep. The supervisor, Joshua Whited, then took the book from her and slammed it into the student’s chest.
Avery was then told to leave the room, according to the complaint, and police officer Christopher Bryant followed her. Bryant slapped her backpack, and then “proceeded to shove Ashlynn face first into a file cabinet and handcuff her,” the complaint states. While in the car, Avery vomited. She was taken to a hospital and had to wear a cast as a result of her injuries.
“Ashlynn required follow-up care to her shoulder, arm, and wrist, Ashlynn also required extended mental counseling for trauma caused by the defendants,” the lawsuit states. The Averys are seeking “compensatory and punitive damages for civil rights violations, battery and negligent supervision and hiring,”.
The case is another example of abuses committed by school police officers. Activists have long decried the “school to prison pipeline” which disproportionately affects communities of color. A PBS factsheet, as the Courthouse News Service notes, states that “70 percent of students involved in ‘in-school’ arrests or referred to law enforcement are black or Latino.”
“When police (or ‘school resource officers’ as these sheriff’s deputies are often known) spend time in a school, they often deal with disorder like proper cops — by slapping cuffs on the little perps and dragging them to the precinct,” wrote Chase Madar in the wake of the Newtown massacre. The school shooting in Connecticut has sparked more calls—from both Democrats and the National Rifle Association—for more police officers in schools.
STOP ANGELINA VENEGAS’ DEPORTATION!
This is URGENT. Angelina Venegas was in a minor car accident early last year, when a car rear ended her. Since she was the only one without a license, she was promptly arrested in front of her children. She wasn’t even allowed to call someone to come get her children.
Angelina is set to be deported TOMORROW! Angelina has a clean record, has been living here for more than 10 years, and is the single mother of three young children. Why is Angelina being deported despite being “low priority?” Make the calls! Your call can help keep this family together!
A nice Cheerios advertisement whose only discernible difference from other Cheerios commercials is that it depicts an interracial family was forced to disable its YouTube comments section today after it became inundated with virulent racism.
Despite the hate, Camille Gibson, vice president of marketing for Cheerios, told us in a statement, “Consumers have responded positively to our new Cheerios ad. At Cheerios, we know there are many kinds of families and we celebrate them all.”
Read more at Gawker
but this commercial is harmless like…..uuuuugh
this shit was adorable
i mean dear god they didnt even show the parents at the same table. lol racists. but the commercial was darling though hahaha his face when he was like “why is there cereal all over me tho.”
That is adorable, but people will always shit on things associated with blackness.