Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Has Rapper Jay-Z Become A Lyrical Slumlord.

October 29, 2013 by  
Filed under Ent., Music, News, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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( The rapper Jay-Z is clearly, beyond reasonable doubt (get it?), one of the most talented hip-hop artists in history.  Scratch that.  He’s one of the most talented musicians to have ever lived.   His rise to grace has been like a rocket ship, and gives him the right to be a little more arrogant than his competitors.

But true power is not represented by your ability to stand above those who lifted you up.  It is to stand among them and lift them up with you.  A weak man can elevate himself and tell the world to “watch the throne,” while a strong man is able to build and elevate a throne large enough for everyone.   See the rapper Immortal Technique for a perfect example.RapperJayz

Rapper Jay-Z’s obsessive, brain-washed commitment to money over all things is reflective of the times in which we live.  A woman like Harriet Tubman would be ridiculed for trying to free hundreds of slaves when she could simply free herself and get paid by writing a book about it.  Martin Luther King would be pushed to become a megapastor selling books and hosting a talk show instead of getting shot on a balcony.  Malcolm X would probably be in prison, since his mind would be too dangerous.

As brilliant as Jigga might be, someone along the way convinced him that money is the ultimate trump card; that by saying, “I got paper bitches,” you can win any argument, get any girl, go anywhere, and do anything.

But there is a conscientious minority in America who sees just how deeply the problems go in our society.  They see that black poverty is getting worse every year.  They see that spiraling incarceration rates have destroyed millions of black families.  They see the abuse, addiction and depression that comes from black people being unable to get jobs while watching their babies being shot in the street.  They see the pain loud and clear and want to do something about it.

What’s remarkable is that many of those who live in the midst of the pain being created via racial inequality continue to pay rent to Rapper Jay-Z by bowing at his thrown and throwing money at his feet.  The desire to collect resources from a community while paying little attention to the maintenance of that community effectively makes Jay-Z a lyrical slumlord.

I hope my description of Rapper Jay Z is inaccurate.  I also hope that someone inside his camp is informing him of how both his soul and reputation are being corrupted by showing such a grave indifference to the suffering of black people who love him.  But money can make us blind, deaf and dumb, swimming in a pool of ignorance, champagne, marijuana and dollar bills. We think that because there is some white guy paying us millions of dollars each year to parade around the country calling ourselves n*ggers, that we’ve somehow made it to the top.  The sad reality is that, in some ways, Jay-Z has made it all the way to the bottom.

Get it together brother, you’re meant to be better than that.  We can’t have black male geniuses wasting their lives by living for themselves and nobody else.  A community is built by all of us, that’s why it’s called a “community.”

Staff Writer; Dr. Boyce Watkins

Dr. Boyce Watkins is the founder of the Your Black World Coalition. For more information, please visit



7 Responses to “Has Rapper Jay-Z Become A Lyrical Slumlord.”
  1. word up says:

    @Terrance Amen your attitude is also why our community can’t move forward because we’re always waiting on someone to spoon feed us instead of providing for self. You should know by now that people make their mouths say anything so stop being so gullible and go out and get yours to do what you want others to do in your own community.

  2. @ Clarke and 4real

    The things you talk about, I haven’t heard before, but he has started businesses in the Black community with his theaters, Starbucks, and he’s done a lot for the Black community when it comes to AIDS. I do agree he may talk more than he produces. But my point was that we really don’t know what these celebrities do with their money if they don’t tell us.

    Black Unity means financial independence and happiness

  3. 4real says:

    Magic exploits the poor by promoting Rent A Center, Jackson Hewitt refund loans, and other predatory lenders in the black community even though he’s always reminding the public about the goodwill he’s contributed to our community.

  4. clarke says:

    why wasn’t magic johnson truthful when he told the now defunct inner city broadcasting corp. and national black caucus that he would help inner city broadcsting stay afloat, but instead magic and his pals he fronts for like ron burkle hostiley took over inner city broadcasting corp, and of course now magic johnson likes to parade all over black america saying he owns this media outlet and that media outlet, but leaves out the true owner’s of those outlets the private banks he fronts for that own them outright, but he likes being that because they know like he knows you don’t think black folk will question a black face do you?

    Gotta be able to connect the dots, and not be seduced by crumbs that pass itself off as good deeds for the community. we gotta see things from the wide view.

  5. A lot of times we talk about entertainers we don’t know because we don’t see what they’re doing or what they’re contributing to the community. So it does do them a disservice by not knowing what’s going on as far as their support for the community. That’s why I’m a big Magic Johnson fan as apposed to Michael Jordan. Magic is not afraid of telling people what he’s doing and what we should be doing for ourselves.

    These athletes and entertainers leave themselves open for criticism when they don’t share their good deeds in the community. There is a mentality of individualism in this society, which I think has affected us more than anybody else because we’re the least that can afford to think this way. The only thing we lack is unity, which can go a long way to solving our problems.

    Black Unity means financial independence and happiness

  6. clarke says:

    If we weren’t individualists but instead collectivists and not the loyalist consumers since the advent of consumerism with nothing to show for it, but moments like barney’s and black apologists preaching that individual mindset even though those same apologists get it up yzoo like every black person one way or another…delusional black folk in the 21st century.

  7. hoodgirl says:

    Jay Z and Beyoncé represent a hard working self made married couple with a traditional family that should be emphasized in our community. To reach this level of success by utilizing their God given talent taken into consideration both of their backgrounds is commendable and for you to assert that Jay Z is responsible for the dysfunction exhibited by our community at an alarming rate is disgraceful.

    If we weren’t so fixated on “The White Man” and being “anti-American” our community would be economically empowered.

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