Rapper Macklemore acknowledges ‘White privilege’

Jineea Butler | 9/23/2013, 11:49 a.m.

A young Black man who degrades women, talks about selling and doing drugs, killing people and throwing money around is never going to be a role model for White America. But for a young Black man who doesn’t know what type of opportunities that are afforded to him, it’s a way of life. It’s easier to convince young White children that this is not a person to aspire to be like.

In the meantime, White rappers are ushered in with messages that are appealing, non-threatening and vulgar free. I admit it is somewhat amusing to see a White person spit rhymes. But we must remember as we cheer them on, we are cheering ourselves out.

Look at Justin Timberlake, a pop artist, who crossed over into hip-hop to broaden his appeal and now reigns as the King of Pop. How about Miley Cyrus who is trying to use a bad girl image to promote herself. Twerking a dance made famous by Blacks now is a household conversation because she did it. Kellogg’s has even introduced Buzz the Bee with his own Honey Nut Cheerios hip-hop video It Must be the Honey. So while hip-hop is on the decline for Black artists, sales are up for people who want to utilize the power to convince, influence and promote messages.

We need to take a page out of Tyler Perry’s book and use our earnings to build our own distribution companies. If we continue to rely on other races to fund our success, we will always rise to the top and end up where we started from – the bottom.

Jineea Butler, founder of the Social Services of Hip-Hop and the Hip-Hop Union is a hip-hop analyst who investigates the trends and behaviors of the community and delivers programming that solves the hip-hop dilemma.