The gap between the programming on Viacom's MTV and BET and young people's interests seems never to have been bigger. According to the Black Youth Project, a University of Chicago study released in January, the overwhelming majority of young people, especially blacks, believe rap videos portray black women negatively. That's one reason rap music sales declined 20% last year and remain down 16% this year.

If you look back at the Civil Rights Era, when Rev. Martin Luther King was leading his march to bring attention to racial/economic injustice in Memphis, the media focus was not on the smooth talkin' dude in the nice suit but on a gang of paid off ruffians called the Invaders who allegedly wrecked havoc on innocent bystanders. This served as evidence that segregation was indeed justified because Black folks were not quite civilized enough to eat a hot stack of pancakes at Howard Johnson's.

Back to the present, its 2007 many young girls have lost respect for themselves and each other and in turn brothers have lost respect for their sistas. Young girls see these video vixens on the TV screen, where many aren't making money, will do whatever to be seen hoping to catch the eye of some rapper or video director. It's time for hip hop to grow up and be responsible for it's children. This includes, not just the rappers, but the label heads, producers, journalists, directors of TV programming, educators and definitely the parents.

Hip Hop is you. Hip Hop is us. Hip Hop is global. Hip Hop is Black. Hip Hop is Africa. Hip Hop like all the greatest music (Jazz, Blues, etc) and dance (Samba, Tango, Jives, etc) in history was created by Black people and traces its roots to Africa. This piece takes a closer look at the origins of Hip-Hop and its appropriation by commercial entities. The article also suggests ways that the originators of these cultural expressions can financially benefit from their talent and creation.

The two polar forces has been ever present since the separation of light from dark, man from god, physical from spiritual, conscious from sub-conscious, white from black and so forth. As the soul of man continually try to re-connect with the source he continues the process of creation that was in the beginning. One of the greatest examples of creation is music. The ancients created the instruments of sound vibration. The ancestors created dimensions of music (genres) such as roots reggae, rhythm & blues, Jazz and Rock & Roll. These musical dimensions were where their souls traveled so not to be damaged by the suffering endured by the body i.e. slavery, brutality and rape.

We see recycled certain old stereotypes here about Black women and “lies,” especially Black women who do not conform to white racist codes of sexual repression, as if this conviction could possible represent “justice.” Despite all the reports of 50 Cent’s ties to the NYPD, not to mention Eminem’s Secret Service agent security guards, any Hip-Hop that lacks the vision to see through state lies is not the real thing; any Hip-Hop that is too afraid to resist state lies and Rap COINTELPRO is fake as hell. This case was not about “perjury” at all, no more than the U.S. in Iraq is about “liberation.” It’s about whether or not we cooperate with state power, however illegitimate, and this includes its power to persecute us--as usual.

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