Ice Cube

U Mad?: What Happened to the Angry Black Man?

“Every show you see me in/ deep concentration/ cuz I’m no comedian” – “I Ain’t No Joke”, Eric B and Rakim

There was a time when Hip-Hop artist “Bro4Real “ put fear in the heart of America, as he was this country’s biggest nightmare – an angry Black man on a mission. Every time he picked up the mic, there was the threat that he would spark an uprising in every ‘hood in America. But that was before he went Hollywood and found out there was more money in making kiddie movies. Now you can catch him at Wally World some weekends, signing autographs for little White kids whose parents he once scared to death…

Back in 2003, Cam’ron created a catchphrase when he put Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly on blast with two simple words: “You mad?” Almost a decade later, if you asked the same question to Black folks in America, the answer would be a resounding ‘No!’ Matter of fact, we seem to be the only people on the planet who are not outraged about something right now.

Recently, the whole Muslim world became outraged over a cheap movie on YouTube that disrespected their religion. Simultaneously, the Scientologists were upset over the movie The Master, which they found offensive. At the same time, even the mild mannered royal family of London got ticked off when half naked pictures of Princess Kate appeared in an Italian magazine.

But for the majority of African Americans, everything is beautiful.

It hasn’t always been that way. There was a time, during the late ’60s, when the streets were angry. During that period, even the most racist White person watched his words because of fear that some six-foot-five Black man in a black beret and army fatigues might come knockin’ at his door late one night. Even the Blaxploitation movies of the ’70s had that one obligatory, super, pro-Black brotha tryin’ to drop science on the pimps. This did not escape the notice of countries across the world fighting American and European imperialism.

During the late ’80s, Black rage was expressed through the music of Public Enemy and other political rappers. Even though the early gangsta rappers, such as N.W.A., preached messages of misogyny and murder, they, too, made it clear that they were angry at the system, if only as an afterthought.

So the question is, how did a people who have served as role models for the oppressed, everywhere, struggling against global tyranny, become such wusses in the 21st century?

Although many people point to political oppression via such covert programs as COINTELPRO as the culprit, the real reason for the lackadaisical attitude is more overt, yet sophisticated.

Anger management.
In 1968, the Feds put out the Kerner Commission Report as a way to explain why Black folks in the ghetto were so angry. By the early ’70s, they had found a way to channel that anger under Richard Nixon by changing the focus from Black Power to Green Power and neutralizing the “militants” by giving out small business loans, government jobs, and college scholarships as rewards for good behavior.
As Kwame Ture (then Stokley Carmichael) observed in his 1968 speech in Oakland, CA, “a lot of people in the bourgeois tell me they don’t like Rap Brown (Jamil Al Amin) when he says ‘I’m going to burn this country down’ but every time he says ‘I’m going to burn this country down’, they get a poverty program.” Today, rap artists who promise to stick to coonery and murder music are rewarded with million dollar mansions and Maybachs.

Times have changed but the game remains the same.We have to stop parroting the lie that political Hip-Hop is no longer popular because the collective condition of African Americans improved, or people just got tired of hearing it. Nothing could be further from the truth. With times being harder for most people than they were in the ’80s, that explanation just isn’t logical. In reality, the pacification program that used pimpology, federal and private grants, and drugs to suppress the revolution in the ’60s and ’70s simply added rap music to the mix in the ’90s. So you had the creation of a new drug – “Rap Ritalin.”

Although rap music may go through various stages, the one thing that the power structure doesn’t want is angry music with a political ideology. Matter of fact, if conscious artists want to shut down the aggressive, murder music being played on the radio – pronto – all they have to do is start making revolutionary remixes of the Top 10 hits. Some have already done it, like Dead Prez in 2002 with Turn off the Radio, The Mixtape Pt. 1, and Jasiri X recently did with 2 Chainz’s “Riot”. However, it has yet to be done in the context of a mass movement.

Hip-Hop today is full of distractions, with the sole purpose of keeping the youth from getting angry. Whether it be keeping them perpetually high or turning them into over-sexed, sex fiends, the goal is the same. Think about it. How mad can a rapper be while smoking a blunt and gettin’ a lap dance from Big Booty Judy? He’s just happy to be alive.

So today, the angry Black man is dead. The grimacing poster boy of Black rage, Ice Cube, is making Disney movies and Ice T, the “cop killa,” is playing a detective on TV. The only remnants of the angry Black male are “Huey Freeman” from the “Boondocks” cartoon and “Brother For Real” from the old “Martin” reruns.

Although we may underestimate the power of righteous indignation, those in power make no such mistake. If a low budget YouTube video could spark worldwide revolts, how much more could the words of a Jay-Z or Kanye West?

Even within Hip-Hop, what would happen if the next assault on Black culture by the entertainment industry was met by outrage? What if mad mobs of Hip-Hop fans wearing black hoodies started turning over tour buses, or college students started bumrushin’ the stage at homecoming shows, demanding an end to murder, minstrel music?

It’s time for us to get mad again. Like “Howard Beale” said in that classic old school movie, Network, it’s time to open the nearest window and yell, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not gonna take this anymore!”

Although words like this ain’t gonna get me invited to many Hip-Hop conferences, and eventually may cause this column to be “banned in the USA,” (as 2 Live Crew once put it), so be it. Somebody’s gotta tell the truth. The only way we are gonna regain our respect is to follow the 2 Chainz motto and let the world know:

“If you mess with us/we gonna start up a riot.”

TRUTH Minista Paul Scott’s weekly is This Ain’t Hip Hop, a column for intelligent Hip-Hop headz. He can be reached at info@nowarningshotsfired.com, on his website NoWarningShotsFired.com, or on Twitter (@truthminista).

  • All the angry Black men decided to put on dresses and pretend to be Gay.

    • MarquisCarter

      Pretend?

      • Warrior Mamma

        Alright, Marquis! LOL…

    • Bumpy Johnson

      yup ,wearing skinny jeans, tight clothe and piercing their faces. lets not leave out most importantly the angry black man’s back bone, the black woman, herself has become a twerking shower cap wearing over sassy foul mouthed unethical and immoral animal.

  • All the Uncle Toms get paid to not work with them.

    • Well said, the new Uncle Toms are ur popular Rappers. Saying everything to mislead the young black child. How’s covering your skin with tattoo going to get u a really job. u forget we’re black…

  • Got quite a few, they just aren’t getting the industry’s support.

    RST’s – “From Which I Came” ( Produced by Monster Musik…from iLLseed’s Rumors comments, youtube it!

  • everybody wanna be cool, a dope boy or club friendly..nobody wants to be “unpopular” for tellin there superstar rap friends thier wack … band wagoners and dick ridahz cant get mad if tha person they following is happy being wack…and thats all thats left in tha game…and that should be one of tha main reason we should see another DMX or early Ice Cube..money took tha edge off and disguised tha problems
    Be Real, Be Original @jasecooklive

  • thuglifefukdapolice

    i need to be a rapper cause i still got that ice cube look

  • insaneangelic

    The Media outlets and Corporations found a way to keep the majority dumbed down. So now its cool to be a jackass and a coward. Most people nowadays will bump Lamborghini Mercy over Lamborghini Angels

  • Jim Beam

    The author says that white parents were “scared to death of ice cube”. My dad would have kicked the ever loving mother f***ing c**k sucking s**t out of Ice Cube. He’s 6’8, 350 lbs. So suck it author ! With your “it’s whitey’s fault that black people aren’t angry anymore” bulls***. It’s like, damned if you do, damned if you don’t. If we “make you angry” it’s our fault and now it’s our fault if we “make you less angry”. Go f*** yourself !!

    • TALK_BOSS

      6’8″….350lbs….pretty impressive….too bad he got a f@ggot for a son…..must be proud

      • Jim Beam

        He does have a f@ggot for a son… My brother… And he is proud actually. He didn’t turn his back on him. And neither did I.

      • TALK_BOSS

        A tear drops my fukk!n eye buddy……….btw I wouldn’t turn my back on him either……….pppppppppppPOW!!!!!!

      • Bumpy Johnson

        buuuuuuuuuurnnnn

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  • Mega Don

    That was white america plan all along to blind us to weaken us cause they fear that when we get together we got the power to take things over so now in the rap game we got nothing but uncle toms and fools that representing our community by degrading our community to make it look like is one big party but yet we wake up in proverty to suffer for nothing but be another pawn in the white man’s chess box the orginal black men been dead cause society is working against them in so many ways

    • Jim Beam

      Your exactly right. Everything is the white man’s fault. If you make it in life it’s in spite of the white man and if you don’t make it in life it’s because of him. Great philosophy. Your not a pawn in my chess box. You have NOTHING to do with me and I have nothing to do with you. We don’t “fear when you get together” either. I could give a f*** whether you stand in a f***ing circle and hold hands while singing kumbaya all f***ing day or slit each others throats. Makes zero difference in my life. Get over yourselves. We don’t sit and think about you all day as much as that may hurt.

      • TALK_BOSS

        POW!!!!!

      • Wow, that’s alot of hostility coming from Jim Beam, i’m curious how you found your way to a hip hop site. Must’ve typed the wrong url link for country music huh? Oh well. It’s not the white man’s fault at all that these popular rappers are too stupid to put all the money they brag to the public about to good use right? See that’s what brings up the term “coonin’.” They’re actually making the man’s job very easy because alls he gotsta do is collect his money from those boys. Imagine if those labels didn’t have these coons to constantly corrupt the younger crowds with their trash. I think that’s a brilliant idea.

      • NEWSKULL

        Lmaooo at Country…

      • MELANIN.

      • Until you’re actively AGAINST racism, you’re just a PASSIVE participant & a PAWN yourself

  • pockets_hot_from_pepperoni

    Very interesting article and I enjoyed reading it like most of you it’s not that i’m a “hater” of most rap today they just have no originality/skill. I think the problem with the newer generation is the f*ck it all attitude and instant gratification rather than working for something. However can you really expect Millionaires like cube,hova, and ye to make super conscious or angry music all the time they are set for life and have nothing to worry about. I’m sorry but if some of these millionaire cats had a true love for the game they would invest in hip hop like that ie; slaughterhouse before they became unbearable just to try & make a buck. I think em could stand to loose a few mil to put out some real hip hop. Hova and ye shouldn’t need to dumb down they’re shit anymore for fear of damaging their ego. who the hell needs 400 mil

    • KingsCountyCrooklyn

      who needs 400 mil? a billion is the current target for bragging rights…

  • TALK_BOSS

    All the crakkas got too much dirt on us……

    • Jim Beam

      Ok

  • chippc

    Is Ice Cube supposed to be the example here? He has a beautiful wife, well adjusted kids, a successful rap and acting career. Far removed from South Central, LA. Aint no reason for him to be angry all the damn time. Not even the most militant of brothas stay angry 24/7. That man is in his 40’s, life changes. Priorities change…
    Ok the sitcom was wack, lol!
    But for those still checking, his music is still politically as charged as ever.

    • Ratchet God Rep That Cap Life

      ice cube is a example of the angry black man and also a pure example that the black man really has no reason to be as angry anymore

  • Lyve Wire

    what are ‘we’ supposed to do? there will be a jail cell bench with your name on it if you want to play that ‘ turning over tour buses, or college students started bumrushin’ the stage at homecoming shows’ now. and what did being mad at the world get us then? we have enough angry blacks in chicago. do we really need to be any on a national level? things are out of hand as it is.
    //
    you need to be happy that we as blacks have more opportunities to provide for ourselves and families, rather it be with rapping or anything else. the system is designed for us to fail, IMO, but if we took responsibility for our actions, it’ll be no reason to be mad at the MAN.

    • thuglifefukdapolice

      no u have stupid blacks in chicago what they mean about angry blacks is blacks thatw mad at the system think about chicago has aot of killings but how many are police getting killed or whites none just niccas killin each other like animals they didnt even try dsending the national gaurd or anybody to try to even stop y cause they dont care we just niccas they want us dead anyway

  • Best Comment Advanced Dialogue

    We don’t need angry black men making music about rioting, we need everybody to just look at what we’ve created and kept alive. Music became about making hits with hot beats and negative punchlines. I hate that. Can we get hot beats with some consciousness sprinkled on top?

    The angry black man still exists but they blame everything on the white man instead of changing and becoming the leaders that we need.

    • Bumpy Johnson

      who blames the white man right now…which black celebrity?

      • Best Comment Advanced Dialogue

        Just Read The Comments on this article. But Black Folks been blamin’ the white man since way-back. I here Plies’ voice in the back of my mind as we speak, lol

  • Jim Beam

    Is this the same author who said white people are trying to steal your movie stubs ? lmao. Does this guy have a blog of his own with more articles ? This is too funny. I have people at work dying over here.

    • chippc

      I don’t know, but it is the same guy who chastised blacks for celebrating the 4th of July. As if we are supposed to gather together and write black history reports instead of enjoying a day off from work, maybe have a cookout and be with our friends and family. I said then that Minista Paul Scott reminds me of Shareef from Menace to society, who became Muslim, and tried to “enlighten” everybody.

  • tbh it is , has been and will be forever a fight between whats good and evil even when we are all dead and gone. There are so many tricks used by the evil one to confusse,cloud manipulate our brain so as to avoid the truth (which is there is a creator and there is a person trying to decieve you ) by poverty,greed,jealousy,hunger,lust all the emotions humans are born with to keep us from a stable peacefull state of mind in order to persue the truth…. good always prevails remember .. it is hard talking to a young mind as i once was young and chased all the dreams i was fed into my brain through telivision(mainly) but as we grow our minds reach a level were we can accept teachings and other peoples reasoning….. besides through hardships come many blessings although it may be hard to see at the time….. african asylum seeker in england signing out…. one

  • MiiUziWeighsATon

    Mafukkaz angry as hell…look at the murder rate in AnyTown, USA…rappers aren’t angry because they are eating lovely…college kids not bumrushing shyt cuz they know one thing is certain…CATCH A FELONY AND YOU CAN KISS YOUR CAREER GOALS GOODBYE…wearing a black hoodie and mobbing in the street will get you DEAD, DEAD, DEAD….you see what a hoodie did for Trayvon and his murderer was not even a cop…SO WHAT DO YOU THINK THE POLICE GONNA DO TO AN ANGRY MOB OF NIGGAZ IN HOODIES…ain’t gonna be no firehosing and dogs…all gun work…shells flying….massive overkill…the revolution will not be televised, played out over the radio or internet…the revolution is dead…u see the arab mafukkaz wildin out in various countries over a youtube movie…look at the Muslims here in America…QUIET…we angry we just aint gonna do shyt…none of us…we see we can not and will not win

  • On-Point

  • jondoe

    This guy here who writes these articles are all about race..Morgan freeman said the best way to get rid of racism is to not talk about it. It’s a WHOLE NEW DAY, we got a black president damnit! Aint that what martin luther king & malcolm x fought for? so we can be equal & a Black child can aspire to be anything including a president. Its no need for all that black panther stuff TODAY because they accomplished everything they set out to do if Huey Newton was alive today he would be very proud at the progress us blacks have made so please tell me what else is there to fight for.

    • identity theft….yea i said it

      • jondoe

        what u mean?

    • Bumpy Johnson

      are you serious. you must live in Montana or something.

      • jondoe

        Nigga I’m from Texas, Houston to be exact

      • Bumpy Johnson

        so when you drive around trinity garden, kashmere garden, braeswood and sit and hear what the kids say and how life is like , you think we have nothing to be mad at bruh?

      • jondoe

        How long it took u to look that up? but anyways, I’m from the northside spent a little time growing up in kashmere gardens, & i guess u are saying that the kids in these areas have negative outlooks on life? Well thats not just the hood thats everywhere! Every kid in the “hood” is not aspiring to be a thug, shid barbara jordan was born & raised in 1 of the toughest parts of houston look how she turned out. No we don’t have nothing to be mad at for what?

      • Bumpy Johnson

        @richalpo:disqus i dont get your first question.look what up? ….but u trippin, u think i ain got nothing to be mad at when my kid is zoned to a wack ass school with teachers that dont give a f*** bout nothing. you think i ain gone be mad getting pulled over,searched and harrased by the HPD, Sherrifs, and the gay constables for no damn reason all the damn time…..u know what ima post a poetry video on youtube with some issues that i think u should be mad that happen in the city, and from then on you can try to follow me coz theres too many things i can mention that maybe might open your eyes towards that. being out here in these streets everyday there is a million things to be angry about ….not every kid in the hood aspires to be a thug but most of’em will end up being one. barbara jordan grew up before crack,coke,guns and murder was part of our culture.

      • jondoe

        I’m black…I’m a young black man at that & i drive up & down Homestead all day if I’m not at work & only time I’ve been pulled over is when i ran a light or my tags or something was out, i got my car searched once but i was smoking in it so what. I went to forest brook high school(which was just shut down due to academic failure in like 2008) & the teachers teach trust me, its all in the students hands if they wanna learn something, but most kids skipped class & shit so most were held back. I learned alot at that school, when i chose to pay attention anyway. This police profiling shit is getting old I’m tired of hearing this shit I grew up in the hood & seen it all, u got a problem with school district u zoned in then move! How many school conferences u have attended? what have u done to improve the situation besides complain about it on the internet? & newsflash buddy, drugs guns & murder hs been a fact of life for 100’s of years aint nothing going to change

  • zkinter36

    The angry black man has been replaced by the whiny, oversensitive, emo, skinny jeans rocking hipster that flows like it’s that time of the month.

  • PWA

    HOW about you VOTE!!!!

  • M.A.T.H.

    Ice Cube is family man first so it’s not out character to make family friendly movies, ya’ll act like he’s supposed to be giving 40’s to his kids and taking them to the shooting range. His music still shows that he’s still aware of what’s going on. The industry have these kids oblivious of what’s being done to them, they’re achieving oppression peacefully so nobody is thinking about it, yeah we got a black president but he doesn’t run your police department yet you think we in the mountaintop? They got ya’ll good because we ain’t winning we just look good losing.

  • M.A.T.H.

    The way these rappers are now the next article is gonna be “What happened to the manly Black man?”

  • Slaughtr

    Most of you hit the shit on the nose but you always have an outside nigga that has to comment on oh it was cracker.If your skin is brown and you don’t know the fckn time i’ll hang your black ass myself.Remember cracker took hip hop mainstream to get his money so the corporate boys affect everything from books to media so if you are blinded to that fact of manipulation and what people see and hear you sadly mistaken BROTHER but like public enemy said EVERY BROTHER AINT A BROTHER” AND AS YOU CAN SEE BY A FEW COMMENTS MAJORITY ON THE SAME TEAM THEN THERE’S THE AL JOLSEN TEAM.

  • Slaughtr

    and yea i’m angry BS hip hop today disgust me fuckn up the craft.Call it what you want cause I hate the shit right hate it.

  • Real talk. The mind of God is music. Everything in the universe is in tones/frequencies & these devils figured out how to invert that & use it to keep ppl mislead. Only we the instruments. Usin us like disposable lighters to keep negative/murderous/misogynous energy prevalent. Music is king. We invented it, you hear the African influence on ALL GENRES of music, I DON’T CARE WHO & WHAT LANGUAGE. It’s time to take ours back wit interest. The consciousness is being raised no matter how bad these devils try to fight it & how many wack artists they put out to counter-revolutionize.

  • Dope article, Truth Minista. spoke right to these devils’ tactics. Hip-hop also was used to turn the Black man on the Black woman so that he only sees her as a b1tch/ho, etc. See, while ya’ll was partying, we was fighting rapes, abuse, assault, all because our men want to feel unruly & powerful at the same time. SO THE WOMEN ARE STILL PISSED

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  • immackulate

    the angry black man got bought out … then replaced by the DO ANYTHING FOR A DOLLAR black man – oldest trick in the book is to sell your soul, dignity, ancestry, history, family, neighbor, brother and sister for so called acceptance and notoriety

  • immackulate

    young STOKLEY

  • Tashira

    The angry black man ain’t angry anymore because he didn’t have the opportunity to be angry in the first place due to the fact that abortion targets the black population. 1/2 of all black pregnancies were aborted in 2008 according to the CDC. Now THAT’S racial profiling. Look at the numbers. Go to the CDC website. You won’t see those stats among rich white people. The abortion clinics target low income, racially diverse neighborhoods. It’s not right, and I’M angry!

    • NEWSKULL

      WTF?… Racial profiling???…Oh WOW!…See That’s why I am ANGRY!… You are the reason why white people are laughing at us… Brothers and sisters need to take responsability for their own behavior… Isn’t that a choice to have abortion?… It is up on you to keep the child ain’t it?… Even before that why would have an active sex life when you know first H.I.V is out there (you are probably one of those who think white man created H.I.V to kill black people) plus at that point in your life you probably can’t afford raising a child… Now you saying you don’t see those stats with rich white people …Of course my sister!… you won’t see it my sister!… Not cauz they WHITE my sister!…cauz they RICH my SISTER!… they CAN afford to have as much children as they want!…
      And if Black people are still poor and living the way they live till this day it is because they refuse to help EACH OTHER out…i am not talking neighborhood level i am talking State level why not continent level (black people are everywhere and they have same the struggle i would say it is worse outside the U.S.)…
      We are our own problem… we refuse to be organized and share a common goal that are helpfull to our black community… But when we do, it is a beautifull beautifull thing to watch but the SAD part is that it happens when Corporate America are the one SETTING the goals …

  • NEWSKULL

    BUSH DON’T CARE ABOUT BLACK PEOPLE- Kanye WEST

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