Blame hip-hop

When the New York Times ran its story last week on the crisis currently facing young black men, hip-hop’s preeminent spam blogger Jay Smooth wondered aloud who would be the first black pundit to blame hip-hop. He always has had a certain flair for the obvious.

Come to find out it was a fellow named Orlando Patterson. Sort of. He doesn’t specifically name hip-hop as the reason black men today can’t make it, but he refers to the source of the problem as a culture that involves hanging around on the street, getting fucked up, dealing, and reproducing like a pigeon, or a Catholic.

To be sure, black men have been doing all these things for a while before there was even such a thing as hip-hop. I’m no expert on black history, except for Martin Luther King, Jr. of course, but I would imagine there were jigs engaged in these very same activities in Africa dating back to the beginning of time.

That said, it’d be silly to think that hip-hop has nothing to do with this problem today, even if the author of the Times piece damn near goes out of his way to not mention the term. Hip-hop is largely responsible for the crisis currently facing black men.

And by hip-hop, of course, I’m not referring to the alleged art form that involves d-bags vandalizing buildings with spray paint and Asian dudes sitting around in their bedrooms figuring out how to do tricks with a turntable.

No that would be hip-hop the $8 gozillion marketing plan created largely by TIs at corporations like Time Warner and Viacom, which involves Sprite, shiny car rims, clean white tennis shoes, and what have you. And since this is XXL, I suppose I should mention Interscope. So yeah, and Interscope.

As Orlando Patterson (a jig name if there ever was one) nailed in his op-ed piece this weekend, so many jigs these days wonder what use an education is when the lifestyle that’s glorified in so many rap videos can be had (sort of) for the shitty money you make dealing hand to hand.

As he so elequently put it:

SO why were they flunking out? Their candid answer was that what sociologists call the “cool-pose culture” of young black men was simply too gratifying to give up. For these young men, it was almost like a drug, hanging out on the street after school, shopping and dressing sharply, sexual conquests, party drugs, hip-hop music and culture, the fact that almost all the superstar athletes and a great many of the nation’s best entertainers were black.

Fuck going to high school!

Honestly, having completed both high school and college, I feel kinda gypped myself, especially since I have no money to show for it. I need to be getting fucked up – and fucked – more often. No homo. The fucked up part you can be sure I’ll be taking care of later this evening.

That other concern is going to require a women – not a particularly special one, but hopefully one that understands and is willing to take certain measures to meet a man’s needs. If that woman is you, I think you know where to find me. Again, no homo.

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  • Miss J.

    I blame black men that blame hip hop. Man up and get a job, suckah.

    If I had to…I’d blame parents that don’t teach their kids shit about pride, education, and etc. While mom and pop are working hard for a living, their neglected kids are left being raised by 50 Cent and what not. If parents don’t take time out to tell their little retards that not everybody makes it big by living the street life, then who will?

    And if their excuse is that they don’t have time for their kids because they have to work to support their family …well, nobody told their broke ass to produce spawn to begin with.

  • DocZeus

    Bol, how the hell are you getting away with these columns on XXL? As propietor of your own website, you can write stuff like this and get away it. I gotta give respect to game when due.

  • Bol

    Yeah, I may have been in one of my morning moods when I wrote this.

    I had to get up dumb early to count money at the BGM, which is not even my job.

  • sharonda

    Its true.But I don’t blame it on hip hop.Lot of black boys drop out,I see it happen at my school.Like someone said we should blame the parents for that.

  • Rich

    What gets me, is that white Americans have been saying it since the early nineties, possibly even the late eighties – but because this Orlando chap said it, being the colour he is, people have decided to listen. I’m British, and I can see the hip-hop culture worming its way into many young black men and often women and becoming some sort of elitist cult, almost claiming that those who don’t follow are ignoring their culture and their heritage. Bullsh*t! Shiny wheels and wearing hats too big for your head isn’t being black – it’s being a sheep!
    At last, people are starting to listen. I love hip-hop too, but it would be ignorant to say it doesn’t have negative effects.

    And put Cassidy back in jail – that murdering little scrote needs to be made an example of.

  • khal

    I applaud your use of the word “jigs”… good to hear that term again.

  • Doc Flav

    Actually The Use Of Jigaboo Took Away From A Valid Argument. Using Music As A Scapegoat Is A Poor Example. What About Rock, Country, Blues Or Punk Music. This Theory Would Mean That You Are A Criminal Due To Your Choice Of Music, Music Is Self Expression I Have Written/listened To Songs To Prevent Myself From Irresponsible Actions.

  • Tyler

    Yea’ the way they are marketing the music is what is dangerous not just the music on it’s own. U bang a nigga over the head enough times with something, anything then yea’ hell yea’ it’s gonna get in. We as black people have to take notice of ‘dat fact & the artist should at the least try and throw some pearls on a couple of the songs on their album even if it ain’t the single that they are going 2 be pumpin’ on the radio & club 59 million times a day. We could take over this whole fuckin’ thing if only we could all get on the same page for a minute & that page not be a drug dealin’ free willin’ page ya’ dig? & yea’ I was feelin’ that jig shit either!

  • Tyler

    “I wasn’t feelin’ ‘dat jig shit” either my bad I was typing 2 fast. . sounded 2 much like a white boy was sayin’ it or something yo.

  • bama


  • 11kap

    We black men don’t have to blame ourselves for everything. There are enemies constantly at work against us. Please!! Give me a break with the brainwash!

  • Garbage

    Many kids especially minorities, want to be ganstas these days cause that’s what they here and see. Most of Hip Hop music, especially the radio/tv shit are about being hard and being the shit. Most black kids wanna be rappers, instead of getting a degree and a good job. It’ like what Chris Rock said they think you’re the shit when you get out of jail and they think you a sellout once you get a college degree.

  • traebizzo

    The “cool pose culture”

    Interesting…. Sort of.
    I don’t think black men have looked in the mirror for a long time. If what i see on T.V is what the world sees, then operation genocide is ahead of schedule.

  • the_one

    I agree to some extent that hip-hop is making young black men fail, but to say that it is the soul cause…is ridiculas. The only people who think they can live they life solely behind that are people who are ignorant, and the problem black men has is not with hip-hop, but with ignorance. We as a people need to start educating our youth on the real world. Be real with ourselves we need prepare kids at an early age for life… If you know you dont have a good enough job to help ur kids go to college, tell them get them involved in sports that will give them opportunities but dont put it on them that thats the only way to go to college.. let them know that Things like Choir and Band can also get you scholarships… But w/e it is, It dosent matter w/e you tell them about doing school work or playing sports If your not behind them 110% if you dont support them, they will look for other things that give them support… I would like to say that i dont condone hustling as a means to get ahead quickly…but the truth is, I myself have Hustled to make ends meet…. But the difference is i know the days of Scareface are over, its nothing the world hasnt already seen, and if u think u can live ur life w/o worries and retire early, you could be half right…. but im not sure thats the kinda retirement u want… Main thing we all need to do is take car of these damn kids were making, if u cant do that…put a rubber on. Teach your kids right and wrong, and more over good and evil. Give them the principle that any mans life is just as valuable as the next mans…..

  • Kyle

    I blame hip-hop culture. It’s all about “thuggin’” and glorifies gangbangin’ when 99% of rappers are jokes. The quality of hip-hop has declined to the point where you don’t even have to rhyme, you don’t have to have subject matter even. As long as the beat is hot and you can say somethin’ about bein’ in a club, you’ll go platinum.

    I’m tired of these kids looking up to these pieces of shit that contribute NOTHING to society, and spurn on the gangbangers and other problems wreaking havoc on our way of life.

    Blame hip-hop indeed.