p> Kanye West, sensational Roc rapper/producer, has spurned a sharp resurgence of creativity and hope within the young Hip-Hop culture that is marred with the sting of a double-edged sword.
All around the city and as far-reaching as the northwestern suburbs, young aspirants are rabidly embracing the image of what this rapper/producer represents: pulling oneself up by his bootstraps and walking the beat less taken. Where doors are normally bolted shut, Kanye has shown that you can get into the establishment of success by many means necessary For Kanye, this included dropping out of college for greener pastures in the rap game. Kanye is the proverbial exception to the rule.
So, at what point do we as a people allow the empowering image of getting an education to be smeared further in the already tainted minds of some of our youth?
At what risk do we promote a career that can overshadow raw talent with being in the ‘right place at the right time’ AND the right network of people with the same stats as professional sports? The chances of being successful as a rapper are about the same as getting to the NBA – period. I don’t feel Kanye’s view by suggesting to our African American youth (and youth in general) to forget about education – a right that we fought, bled and lost lives to achieve?
The success of Kanye’s The College Dropout answers these questions in his highly creative, entertaining way and frank way. Without the knowledge and drive honed through SOME form of education; this concept has its own A&R that promotes an already growing trend of instant gratification. But how is an aspiring youth to deal with high expectations with minimal input without stressing the importance of some type of backup plans? Obstacles arise in ANYTHING worth going after.Here is something I wrote for Mr. West. Enjoy.
“The College Sit-In"
Aiight, Kanye – you had a few jokes billed to my expense.
You had some good laughs off college grads with pokes of ill-content.
But we rolled in the trenches, took our hits and graduated.
I’m glad you made it, but don’t ruin the path that lies behind you
by attaching your wrath that blinds youths’ mind to
what you’ve so kindly supplied to the masses that attacks getting an education.
I made it past the obstacles that blocked your view with a swift ass kick.
But even so, I laughed hard at the dude in your last skits.
I have my own hang-ups with the system in place that I took advantage of.
When my walls fell down from false security,
All hell from tall tales hailed from a farce in obscurity…
So I understand – when it all falls down, tall gall’s bound to look down from a vantage snubbed.
I was told that a job was promised
if I worked hard and made it through college.
That knowledge was short-lived once Bush stole votes with systematic fraudulence.
I wasn’t told that Congress also had a say
in the progress of how I got paid…
After I was laid off I gave some thought to the true lies behind diplomatic documents.
What one gains with a degree from a school of hard thoughts
is the same as the streets that breed a school of hard knocks.
Hard locks are hard to pop if you don’t possess key lessons learned.
Keeping your eyes on the prize with a backup plan
keeps drive alive as long as you stack up plans…
It’s guise is determined in wise discernment when potential is lessened or returned.
Being told ‘No’ or that ‘You can’t make it’
are situations that each of us must be faced with.
Many options are taken to overcome such adversity.
But you can’t turn the key away from a child
before they’ve latched on to what they freely see in agreement or denial…
You’re tainting thousands by basting in talcum outcomes tasted in bitter uncertainties.
You can’t turn kids’ key ridges away from school with your lyrics.
You can’t burn uncrossed bridges that sway with such school spirit.
My gift of writing was well prepared in Delaware – where my alleged legend was placed in.
Your humor was as hilarious as In Living Color – you kept it hood, ‘Ye.
But when you tarry us, you’re a nigga, not our brother – ‘And I don’t mean that in a good way…’
There are ways out of any circumstance – one being the pleasant methods of education.
I’ve got two bitter tastes left in my mouth.
One from higher learning, the other from what you let leak into our culture’s house.
Speakers can speak worse than hearing Big Momma curse – kids regard them just as high.
It doesn’t matter what stereos they typically own,
What you amplified stereotypically phoned home…
As the tones blown extend a warranty many children are looking to justify.
You mentioned your grandfather’s sit-ins –
Those types of rallies got us college admissions!
You can’t just diss it with condescendence and get away with it.
You made some pretty rude skits
that can hurt worse than a virgin immersed in a Pretty Huge D*ck…
How you gonna have a PHD with a little Jimmy? – every style isn’t made to fit.
Play with it – reread that last statement.
I’m not talking about sex, I’m talking about methods of education.
My man’s in Atlanta getting his Doctorate’s – little Jimmy belittles Femi.
This cat is a Longshot from his native land,
But he came hear with a stated plan…
His Ph.D. will make his keys to unlock doors with the stocked force of a Nigerian HEMI.
It’s obvious you’re so self-conscious – you seemed awfully curt in those skits.
Your production IS monstrous – but you came off like an offbeat jerk with those riffs.
I’m exposin’ it no matter how phenomenal the skills are that you demonstrate.
I’m glad you revealed your hard aches before becoming so astronomical.
But my heart aches for kids whose faith in their beats gets blasted when told they’re nominal…
In Chi-town, they honor you, but you’ve got a wider account beyond your view
– so watch what you illustrate.
Reggie Legend is AllHipHop.com’s resident poet (but we all know he’s a closet rapper) and his opinons are all his own even though we think kids and young adults should stay in school. Email Reggie here at firstname.lastname@example.org.