Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

People Taking Action

Posted by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 11:35 AM
  • 29 Replies

 I want to share this because I like it, a lot.

MUCH can be done when people speak out, together.

http://www.yourblackworld.net/2013/02/black-news/community-outrage-leads-to-removal-of-emmett-till-lyrics-from-lil-waynefuture-song/

 Community Outrage Leads to Removal of Emmett Till Lyrics from Lil Wayne/Future Song

 

lil-wa

by Dr. Boyce Watkins

Quick note from Dr. Boyce:  Thanks you to you who've supported our efforts to confront Universal Records and the horrible song they were planning to release disrespecting Emmett Till.  I spoke with Rev. Jesse Jackson yesterday, Bishop Tavis Grant, Change.org and the spokesperson for the Till family about the issue, and there is good news to report:

1) LA Reid, who represents the artist Future (on the song with Lil Wayne), agreed to take the lyrics out of the song.

2) Clear Channel has agreed not to play the song - I'm not sure if this is a nation-wide agreement or just in Chicago, I'll ask Rev. Jackson when we speak over the weekend.

There is still more to be done - Rev. Jackson makes the accurate point that a) the artist Lil Wayne should acknowledge that some of the music that he releases is harmful to his people:  Promoting a lifestyle of excessive drug/alcohol consumption, gun violence, s*xual irresponsibility and disrespect for women is disruptive to the psyches of young children who grow up hearing this message on the radio every single day (any good psychologist will tell you this).

b) Universal Records should sit down for a meeting with those who care about the issue (I have made myself available for such a meeting, but I'd be satisfied if they met with Rainbow Push and the Till family) to talk about long-term, systematic changes that need to be made to the artistic business model.  I swear that the next time I write about some brother who's done horrible things to other black people because he's "thugged out" like some rapper on the radio, I'm going to lose my mind.

To help you understand why I am so adamant about the impact that music has on the minds of children, I'll kick in some of what I learned from studying Marketing.  When Nike puts a pair of sneakers on LeBron James and pays him $10 million dollars to do it, LeBron doesn't have to say, "Go buy Nikes."  People purchase the shoe because LeBron markets a lifestyle that includes wearing Nike sneakers.  The model is proven to work, which is why Nike pays him millions of dollars.

The same is true for hip-hop.  When artists repeatedly say, "I smoke weed everyday," "I'll shoot that n*gga in the face," or "b*ches ain't sh*t," they don't have to say, "Please go shoot another black man and please smoke weed before you do it." The lifestyle is being marketed solely because a popular celebrity is professing it to be his own. That's no different from LeBron James saying, "I wear my Nike sneakers whenever I play."

The impact of commercialized hip-hop is even greater than that of a Nike commercial, because hip-hop demands a type of authenticity that is not necessary to market a corporate product - for example, when Lil Wayne says he's a member of the Bloods street gang, he can't just say, "Oh, I was just pretending" (he would die for this kind of lie). But if it's found out that LeBron actually wears Adidas instead of Nike, this wouldn't get him killed.

We've got to be intelligent about how this music is affecting our kids.  As the recent death of Hadiya Pendleton showed us, this is NOT a game.  With all due respect to the extraordinary creative genius possessed by artists like Lil Wayne, I think it's critical that we begin to educate them on ways in which their powerful words so easily sway the minds of young black children.  You shouldn't be using your platforms to destroy the people who love you.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is the founder of the Your Black World Coalition and author of the lecture series, "Greatness is not an option: Why we must teach our children to fly." To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here. 

by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 11:35 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
Radarma
by "OneDar" on Feb. 14, 2013 at 11:36 AM

 Touches on freedom of speech and expression, and clearly there DOES need to be a LINE.

Agree, or disagree?

JakeandEmmasMom
by Platinum Member on Feb. 14, 2013 at 11:51 AM
3 moms liked this

 There already is a line:  You can't yell "fire" in a crowded theater.  There are restrictions on obscenity.

I'm not familiar with the issue behind this story.  I have no idea what the song was saying about Emmett Till.

However, I think that we have a broader problem of a culture of violence and misogyny.  This may be how it is being expressed in the black community, but it is certainly not exclusive to the black community.  I think that any community within the broader culture will have a nearly impossible task of changing these things in that one community when the broader culture hasn't changed. 

pamelax3
by Gold Member on Feb. 14, 2013 at 11:59 AM

I am not sure what the song was saying about Emmett Till, however I do feel that the artist/rappers of today need to really take notice of that their songs are saying and how it effects people as a whole. These songs do show disrespect to woman and humans in general, but at the same time it is Freedom of speech so I will respect that as their constitutional right

Radarma
by "OneDar" on Feb. 14, 2013 at 12:10 PM
Quoting pamelax3:

I am not sure what the song was sa
ying about Emmett Till, however I do feel that the artist/rappers of today need to really take notice of that their songs are saying and how it effects people as a whole. These songs do show disrespect to woman and humans in general, but at the same time it is Freedom of speech so I will respect that as their constitutional right



I absolutely agree, and I will add that the change needs to come from within, as shown in this press piece.
Radarma
by "OneDar" on Feb. 15, 2013 at 11:10 AM
JakeandEmmasMom
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 11:50 AM
1 mom liked this

 

Quoting Radarma:

 http://thegrio.com/2013/02/14/emmett-tills-family-reacts-to-lil-wayne-lyric/

What a lil asshole, really.

 Okay.  Now I see.

What a li'l shit.  He should be completely shunned.

JakeandEmmasMom
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 11:56 AM

 So, I ammend my previous statement to:  I can't really define the line, but I definitely know when it's been crossed.

Li'l Wayne crossed it by a mile.

Veni.Vidi.Vici.
by on Feb. 15, 2013 at 11:57 AM

There is a line. I also believe there are as many people who are indoctrinated to be sensitive as there are people who are indoctrinated to be desensitized.

I've only become more unclear and had lines blurred since discussing race within this group.

People who complain about everything and create blogs/article over ambiguous song lyrics should try to work on their own self awareness, bitterness and happiness instead of stirring up pots and encouraging other people to become outraged.

First it's commercialized music, next it will be attacking a person's freedom of speech. I'm baffled, really. I mean, if we start to stifle the bigots and racists that freely verbalize their thoughts then how are we supposed to know who the hell to avoid?

I don't like Lil Wayne's music so I don't listen to it. Isn't it that simple?


JakeandEmmasMom
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 11:58 AM

 I have two questions:  Do you know who Emmett Till was?  Did you read what he said in the link posted today?

Quoting Veni.Vidi.Vici.:

There is a line. I also believe there are as many people who are indoctrinated to be sensitive as there are people who are indoctrinated to be desensitized.

I've only become more unclear and had lines blurred since discussing race within this group.

People who complain about everything and create blogs/article over ambiguous song lyrics should try to work on their own self awareness, bitterness and happiness instead of stirring up pots and encouraging other people to become outraged.

First it's commercialized music, next it will be attacking a person's freedom of speech. I'm baffled, really. I mean, if we start to stifle the bigots and racists that freely verbalize their thoughts then how are we supposed to know who the hell to avoid?

I don't like Lil Wayne's music so I don't listen to it. Isn't it that simple?


 

Veni.Vidi.Vici.
by on Feb. 15, 2013 at 12:13 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting JakeandEmmasMom:

 I have two questions:  Do you know who Emmett Till was?  Did you read what he said in the link posted today?

Quoting Veni.Vidi.Vici.:

There is a line. I also believe there are as many people who are indoctrinated to be sensitive as there are people who are indoctrinated to be desensitized.

I've only become more unclear and had lines blurred since discussing race within this group.

People who complain about everything and create blogs/article over ambiguous song lyrics should try to work on their own self awareness, bitterness and happiness instead of stirring up pots and encouraging other people to become outraged.

First it's commercialized music, next it will be attacking a person's freedom of speech. I'm baffled, really. I mean, if we start to stifle the bigots and racists that freely verbalize their thoughts then how are we supposed to know who the hell to avoid?

I don't like Lil Wayne's music so I don't listen to it. Isn't it that simple?


 

I do, kind of, moreso now that this article and subsequent articles have been published. I read an article abouthow Stevie Wonder was offended by the song. I did read the link, read the lyrics and listened to the song. Listening was hard because I it gave me a headache.

I get the premise of the article. I find the lyrics crude and offensive. I can only imagine that the people who don't understand why they should be offended either A) Don't know who Til is or B) worship lil wayne as a lyrical genius with no regard for how inappropriate his lyrics can be.

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

close Join now to connect to
other members!
Connect with Facebook or Sign Up Using Email

Already Joined? LOG IN