Hip-Hop's Gender Problem

I read the above article in last week's edition of Black Commentator and I could not agree more the author. How did we get to the point where an African culture could show as much disrespect to our women as Americans do? Taking as a given that not all African cultures are alike and that many African cultures have their own issues with proper treatment of women, is there anyone over the age of 25 who does not look at some of these videos and think, "I was raised to treat women with more respect than this?" How did we come to a place where we not only treat our women as poorly as our former slavemasters did so enthusiastically, but we do so at the same time as we embrace a culture of ignorance as willingly as our current president has so ably demonstrated?

My point is that it is not an accident, that a people who used to fight, die and suffer torture just to learn to read - now contains a huge subclass that thinks learning to read is "acting white". A culture that used to work for years to reunite families spun apart by slavery now fragment before they even begin? Until we formulate a plan to counteract the negative programming that has had a deleterious impact upon us and continues to do so, we will continue to be defeated by our enemies.

So how do we - as Black people - defend our image in this capitalist society, protect our children from falling victim to the negative portrayals of us and prevent them from assuming ownership of these negative images as if they were in actuality true about us? We need to take control over our own images and how they are projected throughout the society. To do this, we need to focus not on the least powerful who are only mimicking the world they see and the images they feel they need to project in order to “keep it real” and instead focus on those who become millionaires (Jay-Z, this means you) and billionaires (Robert Johnson, this means you) by instilling those negative images in our youth.

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