"We are the 99%." - The Occupy Movement
For nearly half a year, that has been the battle cry and observation of pockets of people across the country and the globe. To those who have marched on Wall Street, lived in tent cities in parks, and spoken out about why they believe the "little guy" has been left out of the so-called American Dream, this is a pivotal time in history.
In the 'hoods of America, statistics tell a story of conditions at their worst, as poverty grips families and keeps everyday people far from the luxuries of life and struggling to make ends meet. And, among Hip-Hop - the voice of the youth and the streets - the battle cries are no different.
Solutions to what ills us are fleeting, but there are those who believe that Hip-Hop can "Occupy" itself - i.e. take that same energy and ingenuity that permeates the culture and harness it for collective good. People like revered Civil Rights icon Rev. Jesse Jackson are willing to give Hip-Hop a try, knowing the influence that it has on an audience that stretches far beyond poor, urban Blacks.
In recent weeks, Rev. Jackson hosted his 15th Annual Wall Street Project Economic Summit in New York City, aimed at promoting dialogue that yields answers to how we curb violence, increase jobs, and generally, do better. Watch the clip below of Rev. Jackson's powerful and thought-provoking "Occupy Hip-Hop" panel discussion (with Hakim Green, Ralph McDaniels, and more), hosted by Hip Hop Union and moderated by AllHipHop.com's own Chuck Creekmur: