Hip-hop murders are devastating.
For the young African-American warriors who have the courage to believe in the spirit of capitalism and equality and strive for a better future, it’s disheartening to their loved ones when their lives are stripped from them. The trail of tears is never ending. While on his journey, Atlanta rapper Trentavious “Bankroll Fresh” White was killed. He was doing what he loved: creating, producing and sharing his talent in the music studio when he was gunned down on March 5.
We hear ambulance sirens that raid and destroy our peace and serenity. We all hope for, pray for that old community where breakdancing and participating in varied forms of art, college students, business professionals, graphic art, rhymes, rhythm and even our blues motivated people.
Instead, violence is glorified. The hip-hop community is derelict in its duty to preserve our culture of creative geniuses. The senseless violence is regressive; it’s replicating slavery. In many ways, hip-hop inflicts oppression on our brothers and sisters with misandric and misogynistic lyrics. Hip-hop was built on the ideology to inspire not destroy. If it does the opposite, it’s fraudulent. The consequence of parading violence and polluting young, fresh minds with hatred is death that spurs a trail of tears.
The wars in hip-hop between the East and the West, the wars between hip-hop geniuses on one record label and the next, the presence of criminal elements in hip-hop music, particularly based on regions are futile.
The trail of tears is filled with African-American mothers of children who assimilated into the culture described in songs, who was indoctrinated and wear the labels, the brands, the colors and even the saggy pants, that mirror the style of prison uniforms.
When an unwritten code is violated and one feels “disrespected.” When one’s actions are perceived as being disrespectful, even though no law is violated and one’s God-given destiny is not in jeopardy, but still contempt is bred, the trail of tears gets longer and longer. The painful journey is never-ending.
Owning a gun for protection and self-preservation is an ideology that is forced into our consciousness. Enslaving ourselves to drugs, materialistic goods, money, unwritten codes of disrespect, retard us psychologically and force humane and romantic relationships out of reach.
The trail of tears for the hip-hop community and the Black community is absent of a collective goal of reducing debt and increasing peace. There is a mental war going on. We must take a moment to pause and ask ourselves, are we perpetrators and causing the trail of tears? The lives of young, Black males are tarnished, destroyed or eliminated statistically by his brother, his classmate or peer more than any other cause. His legacy is removed. The trail of tears is filled with mothers who only have memories and photos left. They will never have their son’s presence or witness him become a man, a father, produce a record, cure cancer, live his dreams because he died prematurely. The children of these young men, also the victims and the perpetrators, are left behind without a father.
We need to raise our voice and share our intentions as a community relating to what our goals are to eliminate and stop the violence and crime. It’s key.
Then we must ask the question: “Will we allow the trail of tears to continue?” We must force ourselves to really look inward: Biggie, Tupac and now Bankroll Fresh are all just celebrity examples but what about the thousands of young men and their mothers who are crying without celebrity attention, are crying without songs being made for them?
We don’t want to be neutered or regulate ourselves as a community. We have become our worst enemy. We must take true control of our actions against one another and collectively believe that we can change our circumstances. Given Black lives matter, given the Black community matters, given Black love should be stronger than the forced oppressive trail of hip-hop tears and murder that is seen far too often, instead of a collective parade of love and community support that would keep us from attending premature funerals and the tears that come from the memories and the nightmares, it will be relived because of a beef of disrespect or material games that were ill-gotten. Placed in a business, or the music business and a partnership in the community, the roads to murder mayhem and destruction of a life, we must consider ourselves collectively in order to stop the hip-hop trail of tears that is creating misery instead of great music, great mixtapes, great graffiti, great love of ourselves peace and the silence of the platinum artist continues as the murder grows.