Every Brother Ain’t a Brotha:
Is Drake Guilty of a Hip Hop Hate
TRUTH Minista Paul Scott
"Every brother ain’t a
brother/cause a color could just as well be undercover"
Welcome to the
Terrordome Public Enemy
They had procrastinated for years, but
unable to ignore the issue any longer, the Hip Hop Supreme Court put the hottest
rapper in the game, Fake Graham aka Frizzy on trial for hate crimes against the
Hip Hop community. The rap justices ran off a list of charges against the artist
including tarnishing the legacy of real Hip Hop, disrespecting women and most
damaging,excessively using the N word, when, technically, he wasn’t even Black.
While the charges were being read, Frizzy just yawned and nodded in agreement.
It took five minutes for the justices to come up with a guilty verdict. But when
it came time to decide what the punishment would be, they argued and debated so
long, that finally Frizzy told them to call his people when they reached a
decision , got in his limo and sped away...
People have been complaining
about the atrocities done in the name of Hip Hop for decades and how the rapper
of the month has sold out to corporate interests at the expense of the culture.
However, when the question becomes, “ So, whatcha gonna do about it” there is
never a definite answer.
Perhaps the best example, today, is Hip Hop’s
glamor boy, Drake. The issue here is not the former kid show actor's, lack of
“street cred” nor whether you find his music irritating to the eardrums. But the
fact that he drops the N bomb in so many of his lyrics. Even on his latest
track, “Enough Said” with the late Aaliyah , Drake seems to have a certain
affinity for the word.
In all fairness, rappers have been saying n****
since the first Hip Hop park jams and you would be hard pressed to name one Hip
Hop artist that doesn't use the derogatory term. But the difference with Drake
is; he ain’t Black.
If you look at the Jewish mother rule, if your mama
is Jewish, that makes you Jewish. And since Drake's father is an African
American but his mother is a white, Jewish Canadian, that makes him the latter.
(I didn’t make the rule, I’m just telling you what it says,) This is also
compounded by the fact that you would be hard pressed to see where Drake even
identifies with the dark side of his family tree, unless you consider hangin’
out with Lil Wayne and excessive use of the N word as evidence of his African
Although, one may argue that the one drop rule and the dominance
of melanin in his skin may make Drake racially "Black", that has nothing to do
with what that makes him culturally. So what we are dealing with here is not
race but the politics of cultural identity.
Who can and cannot say n****
has long been debated in Hip Hop. Latino entertainers like Fat Joe and Jennifer
Lopez have gotten by on the “Latino’s are n***** too” argument and white women
like V Nasty and Gwyneth Paltrow, supposedly, have obtained signed ghetto passes
from Hip Hop’s elite, allowing them to use the word. However, it is an unwritten
rap rule, that while a Black rapper can use the word at will, a white rapper is
subject to a beat down for even using “nickel” in a sentence without clarifying
And most white Hip Hop artists aren’t that stupid.
Although, they may hire Black rappers to use the word on their Cd's. they will
never utter the word, themselves.
Case in point is when Dave Mays and
Benzino, formerly of The Source Magazine went on a wild, witch hunt to find
evidence of Eminem saying something even remotely disrespectful about Black
people years back and came up with nothing really tangible besides a lyric in a
long lost unreleased track.
But what if the person has dark skin, but,
culturally, is a card carrying member of another ethnic group.? Should he be
given a pass to use racial slurs without being called on it?
the Drake dilemma.
There is a
certain amount of hypocrisy surrounding Drake's use of the word . Although he
will ,undoubtedly, use the Black half of his genetic makeup to justify using the
N word, I doubt very seriously if he would ever use his Jewish half to justify
using the “K” or “H” word. Nor would he hide behind the First Amendment and get
a swastika tatted on his arm.
Nor should he.
However, if Drake did
use anti-Jewish terms with the same frequency as he uses anti-Black terms he
would not be celebrated in the media as the greatest thing in Hip Hop since Run
DMC, but would be demonized in the press for “spewing venomous hate speech “ and
forever condemned as an anti-Semite on some organization’s hate group list. To
date, nobody has tagged him an "anti-Hamite" or "anti-Khemite."
ethnic group has the God given right to defend its culture, that is the only way
to secure its survival for future generations. However, it becomes problematic
when the blatant disrespect of a culture is roundly applauded on one side but,
vehemently, condemned on the other.
Ultimately, it is not Drake’s fault
for disrespecting the Black community. Nor does the fault fall at the feet of
any individual commercial Hip Hop artist. The blame lies with every rapper who
grabs a mic, every Hip Hop writer with a laptop and every Hip Hop fan who
listens to the radio because we co-sign the madness.
Even the most
militant critic who continuously blasts the state of Hip Hop would become a 13
year old teenage girl if Drake just looked in his
“OMG...Like...did you see the way that Drake just smiled at
At some point we have to begin to stand on
Let's be clear. No one should use the N word , whether it be the
hate speech of White people or the self-hate speech of Blacks.
And until we
come to a general consensus as to what should be done to those who diss Black
culture, we will still be talking about this 100 years from now.
asked on the Aaliyah song, “Is this even still a discussion, don’t you ever wake
up disgusted ?”
TRUTH Minista Paul Scott's weekly
column is "This Ain't Hip Hop," a column for intelligent Hip Hop headz. He can
be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His website is NoWarningShotsFired.com
Follow on Twitter @truthminista