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America Has Failed to Big Pimp

In case you hadn’t noticed, hip-hop, the degenerate pop music genre known for hit songs like Jay-Z’s “Big Pimpin”, has failed America — but so too has the nation failed hip-hop. So says a person named Toure’, to whom the Washington Post gave actual column space to write wisdom such as:

Hip-hop is the product of a generation in which many black men did not know their fathers. How did these fatherless MCs construct their masculinity? For some, it was by watching and idolizing drug dealers. Many would make it as rappers by packaging themselves as former dealers — either because that is what they were or because that’s who they revered. I’m talking about the Notorious B.I.G., Nas, the Wu-Tang Clan, Jay-Z, Lil Wayne, 50 Cent, the Clipse, Rick Ross and others. By then, it seemed as though an MC needed to claim drug-trade stripes to earn acceptance among hip-hop’s elite.

In her 1999 book “The Color of Crime,” legal scholar Katheryn Russell-Brown speaks of the myth of the “criminalblackman,” coining a new word that smashes together two concepts already linked — incorrectly — in the American consciousness. The criminalblackman is supposedly the source of all crime, proof of the natural connection between race and criminality. She pointed out that, in the 1990s, whites comprised 70 percent of those arrested and 40 percent of the incarcerated, but that white crime did not reverberate outward to say something about the character of all white people. By contrast, black crime suggests something is wrong with the entire race.

Bizarrely, hip-hop embraced this notion. Why?

First: Did America make those black men abandon their children?

Second: It’s cruel and absurd to suggest that there is anything about a person’s race that makes them more or less susceptible to criminal behavior. It’s about culture. In the US at this time in our history, a greatly disproportionate number of violent criminals are black (as are their victims). Toure’ concedes that black culture — hip-hop culture, at least — came to embrace criminality. Whose fault is that? Why, America’s, of course:

It’s a classic psychological strategy. As Michelle Alexander writes in her recent book, “The New Jim Crow,” embracing your own stigma is a political act, “an act of resistance and defiance in a society that seeks to demean a group based on an inalterable trait.” These men saw themselves in a nation that assumed they were criminals — so they went with it.

… The nation surely failed its black male citizens by targeting and imprisoning them when joblessness and the crack epidemic left them with few real options. They were conveniently villainized, arrested and warehoused to help politicians, judges, prosecutors and police win the public trust.

So, let me get this straight: America, in its iniquity, failed to prevent black men from making babies, especially male babies, that they abandoned, then failed to compel those children to become employable, then forced them to become dope dealers and thugs, then committed the unforgivable sin of actually putting drug dealers and thugs behind bars.

Got it. America is surely the evillest country on the face of the Earth! Must make a note to emigrate to a place where people can make babies and abandon them without facing social sanction, do drugs and sell drugs and engage in violence related to the drug trade, and not be held to account by the state for their behavior because to do so is an act of racial aggression. Sounds like paradise to me. Can you subscribe to The Washington Post there?


about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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