Friday, May 29, 2009

...our heroes.

"Let's hear it, one for the coons, on UPN 9 & WB. Who "yes massa" on TV.........Let's hear it, two for the spooks, who do cart wheels. 'Cuz they said they played their parts well."
- NaS, "These Are Our Heroes" from Street's Disciple, 2004

First of all, to hell with "Flavor of Love". If you've never witnessed Flav's show "Under One Roof" (a UPN show, btw), you are missing a lifetime's worth of coontrocity at it's most epic. The basis is as follows: Flav is a felon who, upon his release, moves in with his rich, white-washed, douche-nozzle brother. His brother, who is married to a pasty, money hungry, lazy broad, is the total opposite of Flav's character, Calvester.

Yeah, dude's name is Cal-Ves-Ter.

He's a 40-something year old nigga (sorry, it fits too well) with braids, tarnished gold teeth (not make-up; those are his), & a habit of still wearing those night gown t-shirts that went out of style with throwback basketball jerseys. Like 50 years ago. When people listened to CD players. & rappers sold millions of albums purely off skills. & only rich folk sent e-mails.

Now, the show is so richly based off of stereotypes (including the Asian housekeeper with that nail shop-n-day-hood attitude), that just watching it sets racial equility back about 40 years. Probably the same way our parents felt when they watched James Evans, Jr. & Arnold Jackson shuck & jive their way through lines like "Dy-no-miiiiiite" & "Whatchutawkinbout?", respectively. But, Flavor has no catchy one-liners. He just has him. & That's all he needs. I'm not sure how far removed the character is from Flavor's actual being, but I'm just waiting for some Redneck with a flashlight, a pack of dogs & a double-barrel shotgun to claim ownership to his ass. I try not to use the term "jigaboo", but, well, you get my point.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a pretty "average joe" type guy. I enjoy the subtle, racial humor & unspoken nuances on T.V. for entertainment purposes, just like any other American. But, at a time where they are no visible heroes, this kind of malarky shouldn't be tolerated. Its bad enough that Hip Hop, the proverbial bridge between "us" & "them"*, is rife with ignorance & self-hatred. Now, instead of 3 1/2 minute videos depicting such idiocy, we get 30 minute television programs who can afford to go even MORE in-depth with the stupidity. Heaven help us......

Let's do the math. 3/4 of kids nowadays (pick a social divide; any will do) don't have an immediate positive male role model. The lucky ones have mom's smart enough to end up with a decent guy who chooses to give a damn about them. The unlucky one's are forced to fend for themselves, seeking that greater influence that helps children become adults. That influence lurks, be it good or bad. But without the proper guidance, intentions are overpowered by availability. I can go out on my porch right now & throw three rocks. One will hit a crackhead, one will hit a criminal & the last one will just land quietly in the street. See where I'm going with this?

Al Sharpton's old, Jesse Jackson's bitter, Barack Obama's got better things to do. So where are our heroes? Even better, I'll tell you where they aren't.

They aren't making rap songs. They aren't starring in prime-time TV. shows. There's a pretty good chance that they aren't even living yet.

Regardless to the consensus, heroes aren't manufactured today like they were in our grandparents' heyday. Now, they're home grown wildflowers, like dandelions, all willy-nilly without a purpose. It's time for "us" to reclaim our nation, to right the wrongs & stop following the lead of every flash-in-the-pan noisemaker that thinks they have a point to prove. The blind have been leading the blind for going on two generations now. I can't speak for others, but Stevie Wonder can't keep telling me to trust him because he's pretty sure he knows where he's going.

Maybe I'm just getting older, but with age comes wisdom, so in that case, I should be even more convincing.

Think about it.
*"us" vs. "them" is the moral vs. the immoral, the ignorant vs. the educated, the good vs. the bad, just to clarify. It's not a race issue, it's a Human Race problem.