The Sordid Legacy of Margret Thatcher.. What We Should Never Ever Forget

Margret thatcherThe funeral of former British prime minister Margret Thatcher took place in the UK today, one day after the Boston Marathon tragedy.. We talked to long time activist Lee Jasper former senior advisor to the mayor of London and co-chair of BARAC & National Black Members Officer for the Respect Political Party in UK about her legacy..

Lee noted that there’s been an all out attempt to lionize Thatcher and remake her similar to the way Ronald Reagan was remade and sanitized. They gave her full military honors which caused quite a bit of controversy.. They also expected to have the streets lined with millions. Thatcher’s funeral drew less than 100 thousand people. More folks came out in the streets of London for the funeral of former IRA (Irish Republican Army) leader and hunger striker Bobby Sands then they did Thatcher..

During our conversation Jasper broke down the alliance Thatcher forged with brutal Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet and later Ronald Reagan to enact neo-Liberal policies that continue to this day…. He talked about how Thatcher made it a priority to try and break the unions and severely economically cripple working class people. He also spoke about her outright hostility toward Black people..

Jasper talked about the policing policies Thatcher oversaw including one called SUS  (Stop and Search) where thousands of Black people were jailed simply on police suspecting they did a crime..They now have in place a policy that was the prototype for Stop and Frisk.. Lee explained Thatcher’s brutal policies along with her refusal to have investigated a racially motivated fire started by a white supremacist where 13 Black teens were killed led to a major riot in 1981 in the Brixton section of London. Police enhanced the SUS laws and more than a 1000 people were detained and hemmed up by police.

We also talked at length about Thatcher’s foreign policies and her support for white supremacist leader Ian Smith who presided over Rhodesia before it became Zimbabwe.. She talked about her seeing Nelson Mandela and the ANC in South Africa as terrorists. The woman was grand hater of Black liberation.

Lee Jasper Gives us the breakdown on Margret Thatcher

Lee Jasper Gives us the breakdown on Margret Thatcher

It’s with that in mind that Jasper expressed disappointment in the praise that President Obama showered on Thatcher considering the intense dislike many had for her and how divisive she was.. . Of course we should not be surprised considering that strong ties Thatcher had with Reagan and Obama’s repeated praise for the man we once called ‘The Gipper’.

Also during our interview we talked about the tragedy in Boston and how Londoners had to deal with constant bombings during the hey day of the IRA, … Lee expressed condolences to the folks in Boston and then talked about how it led to widespread fears resulting in intrusive and harsh laws..One of the laws that emerged was the precursor to what we now know as one that allows for indefinite detainment of what we call enemy combatants. He talked about the type of stigma and brutality heaped upon the Irish by police during that time and how many were deemed to be that..

Check out the Hard Knock Radio interview by clicking the link below..

Hard Knock Radio logo

Not Every Artist is An Artist..Some Are Lapdogs & Spokespeople For Oppression

Davey-D-brown-frameIn response to Beyonce telling women they are B–tches and to bow down and Rick Ross rapping about date raping someone, there are some who tried to explain that we should leave such artists alone and that they have FREEDOM of SPEECH.. Lets get a couple of things clear..

If you are pushing oppression and have multinational corporations with million dollar budgets and vast resources, promoting destructive messages then YOU ARE NOT an artist.. What you are is a worker…You are a lackey for corporate interests and should be seen as such.. You are no different then Ronald Reagan when he used his acting skills to be a spokesman for General Electric..In this case you are a spokesperson for oppression. Your creativity and artistic talent is being pimped out for repression not liberation..

Spokespeople and workers for oppression look for huge paychecks, cheap fame and an ostentatious lifestyle so they can bury their shame, ease their guilt and distract us from the fact that their souls were sold and their principles forever compromised. A corporate lap-dog will make excuses for having their talent and art be marketed for young minds and used destructively. They’ll tell you about the importance of ‘sales’ and ‘staying relevant’ or how parents should raise their kids.. These are corporate talking points all designed to avoid responsibility.. It doesn’t change their wrong doings of spreading corporate poison and using ‘art’ as the validating vehicle

soul-for-sale-yellowThis is not about telling artists they don’t have freedom of speech or there is one particular party line they gotta adhere to..This is about waking up folks and making it very clear who’s imperialistic interests some who call themselves artists are furthering..It’s about shining a bright light on the deep pocketed nefarious forces behind the work being hawked to the masses..

Are you in the business of saving souls or selling souls? Are you leading us on to the plantation or off? Time will tell the side you choose to represent…

Davey D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwFN9f8q5g0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHnUFpCeGxQ

Earlier when I posted this.. I got an insightful response from former BLA (Black Liberation Army) leader and former political prisoner Dhoruba Bin Wahad..Here’s what he added to my remarks..

I think maybe we should understand how the status of “Race Music” has been transformed in America by a combination of technology, social change, and the corporate globalization of culture. Once “Black” music, R&B, Jazz Gospel, Blues etc, were separate and apart from white corporate and popular music personified by “Tin-Pan Alley” top song listing.

In the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s Our music was patronized and confined (segregated) to our community therefore it reflected our communal reality (faults and all). But after the upheavals of sixties, the rise of the white Hippie “Love Generation” , the urbanization of white supremacist power to control inner city Blacks, mainstream White culture subsumed it’s Black sub-cultural counterpart. This process at once depoliticized Black music, dummed it down to nursery rhyme like songs (almost every popular Rap track, gangster, or “Dirty South” song sound like nursery rhymes appealing instantly to the adolescence generation that was never really taught what growing up means- but more importantly changed the nature of community musical introspection into gross expressions of sex, violence, money, and the values of misogyny.

Hence acting and behaving as backwards Niggers is acceptable.. authentic, the “Hood”. What we used to call “country” (Gold grillwork dressing like a clown in a bad circus act, is now glorified in videos and on stage) because the money corporate America can generate from ghettoized entertainment serves not just they’re bottom-line, but also the promotion of American values, mystique and material wealth – and most importantly the place of the Black man/woman in the overall scheme of things, we have the artists we do today making millions.

I may be wrong, but the last time I looked, white youth were the major consumers of Hip-Hop music and related paraphernalia. White girls don’t consider themselves “Bitches” in the street sense of that odious term – so what Beyonce says in this respect doesn’t resonate with them – what resonates is her outfits and style, so its not unusually for folks to admire stylish assholes, or that an entire generation of young Black women in the “Hood” have raised and are raising a generation of Shanniqa’s and children named after their Moma’s favorite perfume or club drink or luxury car. What does it say about one’s class status and values when waking up in a new Bugatti is a dream come true?

The NRA Says Blacks Need Guns for Protection in a New Ad

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDjp66NdiNY

Davey-D-brown-frameI found this latest ad from the NRA (National Rifle Association) featuring a Black man named Colion Noir stating that African-Americans needs guns to protect themselves to be intriguing on a number of levels.  He talks about how the government  which has a history of racism will not be there for us, hence protecting one’s family is on us..

A couple of things to think about..In the ad Colion mentions the racist government but then tells us how the proverbial hood thugs ‘Ray Ray‘ and ‘Pookie‘ got guns and that President Obama and the govt wont be there to protect us hence.. He says its best we get our guns..

To a degree some of that may be true, but lets look at the sleight of hand Noir and the NRA pulls..While many African-Americans need protection from inner city crime, they also need protection from the government that also terrorizes Black folks..

Colion Noir

Colion Noir

In the ad Noir omits and redirects an important part of history, by inferring that the racist US government allowed white supremacist groups like the KKK to come after us.. Let’s keep it real many of those folks in wearing those hoods were police and government officials.  In their height during the 1920s when Black folks were being lynched left and right, the Klan was a major force in politics..

Black folks if they were to use guns to defend themselves as suggested in the ad, would have to do so against the police and many within local and national government.. That would include mayors and governors who referred to us as ‘niggers‘ while standing before us with state troopers preventing us from attending segregated schools or voting.

When civil rights advocates like Fannie Lou Hammer spoke about being dragged off buses and beaten for trying to register folks to vote in Mississippi, it wasn’t hooded KKK members doing the beatings.. It was the state troopers.. If guns were needed for protection it was against those troopers.. What was the NRA’s take on incidents like that in the 1960s?

What was the NRA really saying with this Noir ad and how does it stack up with their historic actions in the past when gun laws were passed by the government to disarm militant Black groups like the Black Panthers Party for Self Defense?  In 1967 after the Black Panthers following the letter of the law, armed themselves and began patrolling their neighborhoods to make sure the police would cease brutalizing  law-abiding citizens, the Mulford Act of 1967 was passed in California to disarm them..

ronald reagan-225

The person who pushed for that law the hardest was lifetime NRA member then Governor Ronald Reagan who is quoted as saying We will never disarm any American who seeks to protect his or her family from fear and harm.” ..Well a big middle finger to Reagan and the NRA who stood silent when the disarming of Panthers, SNCC and other groups happened. Having a slick ad with an African-American talking about Black history and racism while neglecting the racism of the NRA and its most visible members when it was needed most is the height of disingenuousness..

Over the past 40+ years since the Mulford Act was passed where we’ve seen a sordid legacy of police in Cali shooting, killing and brutalizing, African-Americans, the NRA has been nowhere around to offer comfort, resources or solutions.. Where was this nice NRA ad with Colion Noir when unarmed Oscar Grant was shot point blank in the back  by an out of control BART cop?  Where was the NRA when the infamous Riders scandal and the Rampart scandal were jumping off in Oakland and LA? How was the NRA helping citizens who needed to protect themselves from a tyrannical government represented by the police?

where was the NRA when John Burge was torturing Black folks as a Chicago Police commander?

Where was the NRA when John Burge was torturing Black folks as a Chicago Police commander?

In Chicago, a city with one of the strictest gun control laws in the country, where was the NRA during the reign of terror of Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge? Between the years 1972 and 1991 over 130 African-Americans some as young as 13 were tortured.. (note not beaten.. tortured) by this Burge and his men.. You can read about that HERE ..The 135 cases is what’s been documented, many believe its was hundreds more.. When Chicagoans made their plight known, where was the NRA? Where was ads like the one with Noir? Nowhere to be seen..

We can go on and on citing police brutality incidents on unarmed citizens and the NRA being ghost.. So why are they visible now? Did they have a change of heart or are they walking a razor thin line in terms of how they describe the enemies African-Americans neeed to protect themselves against? Yes many folks in the community have to deal with crime.. Pookie and Ray Ray do cause problems.. I’m not sure if shooting them is the answer, but if it is as the NRA suggests, then we have some other enemies to get at as well.. Will the NRA be standing with us the next time an unarmed Black youth is shot and killed by police? Will they have an ad advocating we protect ourselves or will they remain silent like they did in the past?

written by Davey D

Black Panthers

Thousands Flock to Remember Elvis..Why Don’t Thousands Flock to Celebrate James Brown?

Today (Aug 16th) all the stops are being pulled out to remember the death of Elvis Presley the so-called King of Rock-N-Roll.. Ever since yesterday we’ve seen national TV crews camp out all out at Graceland.. Special tributes on radio.. Even some urban outlets are giving Elvis his props.. In typical form Elvis like Ronald Reagan and our slave-owning founding fathers has been sanitized..Many forget when he died, he was an obese drug addict.. Contrast the celebrations around Elvis with the lack of tributes, shout outs & honoring we do for iconic figures like a James Brown..The Godfather of Soul, Marvin Gaye or Ray Charles. Sure folks will do a quick plug for Michael Jackson upcoming birthday, Aug 29th..Michael Jackson’s death day June 25th came and went w/o a peep. If these dates were or are mentioned, they’re usually accompanied   but not w/o reminding us of all his troubles..Sadly we see similar treatment around all our icons..Many of us were still talking about the Drake/Chris Brown fight which happened a week or so earlier..

From Elvis to the Beatles to Reagan, they are all celebrated, their troubles and misdeeds wiped away while our heroes are either demonized in the mainstream or completely obscured within our own circles. Meaning we have folks with platforms, resources and loud microphones who allow our heroes and sheroes to be overlooked. So while thousands flock to Graceland to talk about the greatness of Elvis, why don’t we start the process of talking up our own.. Where’s the equivalent to Graceland for James Brown?

Thousands flock to Remember Elvis..

California Assembly Passes Bill to Honor the Father of Crack w/ a Statue inside State Capitol

What the heck is wrong with our lawmakers in Sacramento? This past Friday the State Assembly unanimously approved a bill that would allow a statue of the Father of Crack Cocaine to be places inside the Capitol.

The men behind this move is Assemblyman Curt Hagman of Chino Hills and Martin Garrick of Solana Beach. They authored the AB2358 which passed 55-0. Obviously our lawmakers see nothing wrong with sending a bad example to our kids..How do we go about honoring the Father of Crack? Can we get a statue of Black Panther leader Huey P Newton or United farm worker leader Cesar Chavez inside the Capitol? Perhaps we can show some love to Angela Davis or Dolores Huerta?

With each passing year, we have delusional forces within our population who wish to rewrite history and make us forget about a man they call the ‘Great Communicator or the Gipper.. He’s the California actor-turned President turned Crack Cocaine Lord-Ronald Wilson Reagan..

They can honor Reagan with a statue if they want. Many of us will remember his destructive anti-heroic role. Thank God for Atlanta rapper Killer Mike who did this song reminding us about all the harm and dread Ronald Reagan brought to this country.. Here’s an article laying out all his evil deeds.. From supporting Apartheid to turning hsi back on the Aids Epidemic.. Read that article HERE

On last tidbit… The statue of a Civil War abolitionist named Thomas Starr King was removed back in 2006 to make room for Reagan.. How’s that for a nasty insidious twist? Get rid of a guy who fought against slavery to honor a man who turned his back on anti Apartheid efforts..Remember how Reagan stood against Nelson Mandela and the ANC?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPyjJ1MMUzQ

US Bombs Libya: Where’s Obama the Peacemaker?

As we enter into our third war, one has to wonder what’s the ultimate motivation? Many will try to fool themselves and say its needed to save lives.. The question is who’s lives exactly? In Libya is this a popular uprising or a civil war?

Are we on the side of those fighting oppression or are we giving lip service and using that as a good excuse while we aim for other things..In this case oil?

Is Ghadafy a detestable figure who is ruthless with his people? If so where’s our consistency around him? One minute we hating him ala Ronald Reagan.. the next minute we trying to do business with him under George W Bush.. Have we forgotten the US-Libya Business Association who have since took down their site but not before everyone from Haliburton to Chevron broke bread with a man we are now bombing..

Meanwhile all over the planet we have human rights violations being levied on all sorts of countries we consider friends with no talk of Regime Change.. We friendly with China in spite of their of their dastardly deeds.. We’re cool with Saudi Arabia inspite of their shoddy human rights track record. . We ain’t invading Yemen and it was there where we had a ship blown up USS Cole.  We could go on and on.. Hell lets talk about the drama with Israel and how they smash on their Palestinian neighbors..

What’s sad is the role President Obama has been playing. He came out the box saying he opposed the wars but as you can see over the years he’s ‘re-calibrated’ himself and seems as hawkish as any right wing war monger. How does a son of Africa bomb Africa?

I guess its when that Son of Africa sees himself as a politicians more interested in positioning himself and playing the game vs doing what is right. With all our collective brain trust there was no diplomatic solution?  We have a military that has no qualms applying pys-ops techniques on Senators to keep us at war.. But seemingly none to help nations be at peace..

What seems to be at play is those pys-op techniques being used to keep our anti-war movement silent.. Look most people would agree that folks fighting for liberation against oppressive regimes should be supported. But we can’t be selective and hwe have to stand on principal about being about peace.. We’re over in Libya demanding Ghadafiy bounce but we’ve yet to bring our own violators of human rights to justice. Can you say George W Bush? Dick Cheney? Or the soldier shown in the video below..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgybOzCQIpM

Peep the videos below outlining President Obama’s stance on the wars over the years.  As you watch ask yourself will there be consequences to our actions. Ghadafy has threatened to take down commercial airlines. he may not have the weaponry but he does have the money .. The US is fighting 3 Muslim countries is not good.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EhpKmQCCwB8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XAwQRsaD6KI

Below is the link to Obama speaking on us bombing Libya …

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unD7NJYuEDE

On President’s Day We Remember How our Founding Fathers Owned Slaves

As we celebrate President’s Day the thought that four of our first 5 Presidents owned slaves has not gone unnoticed. I’ve been observing how President Ronald Reagan has undergone a major PR, revisionist makeover and could not help but wonder how much of a make over our early Presidents have undergone. BTW we set the record straight on Ronald Reagan with this essay we penned a couple of weeks ago.. Why All of Us Should Celebrate Ronald Reagan Day-Let’s Teach the Kids

It’s no secret that when we learn about George Washington and Thomas Jefferson in school, their slave-owning legacies are barely mentioned.  In fact if you bring it up, some so-called patriot types get angry. I found this out a few years ago during an appearance on CNN when engaged in a debate and some far right pundit attempted to extol the virtues and wisdom of the Founding Fathers.. She mentioned George Washington specifically. When I pointed he was a slave owner she almost blew a gasket. I haven’t been back on CNN since.

Its obvious reminding folks of our founding father’s dubious past is a touchy topic. Look at what’s going on in the great state of Tennessee. There you have Tea Party Lawmakers want to remove slavery and its association to Founding fathers from history books.

You have other Tea Party folks like Congresswoman Michele Bachmann attempting to rewrite history by suggesting the Founding Fathers attempted to end slavery. They did nothing of a kind and she got famously schooled by CNN reporter Anderson Cooper for making such erroneous remarks.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eg8kDG94kb8&feature=player_embedded

No one wants to talk about how slaves were beaten, raped and at the mercy of slave owners. They were property with absolutely no rights and yet we insist on honoring the Founding Fathers on days like President’s Day without fully acknowledging the cruel institution some were a part of.  In addition there was the genocide that many participated in when it came to dealing with Native Americans. Treaties broken, people slaughtered and land taken are all a part of their sordid legacy.

The mantra of many who hold up the founding fathers on president’s Day is Deny, deny deny until people start believing the lies. I’m reminded of this encounter I had during the 2004 RNC in New York City. I came across a brother holding a banner of the Founding Fathers. I asked him about it and things got a little testy. He even called the police..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9erWU9Qjobw

This President’s Day we should do more than shop at Macy’s for their annual sale.. We should become students of history and try to correct the wrongs of the past. It starts with us being honest about our Founding Fathers.

On a side note this year President’s Day falls on the Feb 21, this was the day Malcolm X was assassinated.. We should remember his legacy today. He’s sadly being written out of history, probably by the same folks who are busy remaking Reagan and removing the word ‘slavery’ from text books.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7o3zVD7rx0

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

 

 

Here’s What We Should Teach Our Kids Today on Ronald Reagan Day

Today, February 6 is Ronald Reagan Day and to be quite frank, I’m happy to celebrate. As folks gear up to pull out all the stops and all the bells and whistles to commemorate what would’ve been the Big Gipper’s 103rd  birthday, I too wanna leave no stone unturned. People all over the world especially our children deserve to know the truth about the man who was nick named ‘The Great Communicator‘.

First let’s start by noting that it’s been fascinating to watch as many in power in particular corporate interest who greatly benefitted from his 8 year reign have been hard at work re-writing history and making one of the most detestable figures to ever reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave seem down right angelic.

In short revisionist history of Reagan here in the US is on par to the revisionism that notable figures like former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have undertaken. If Reagan is getting a historic make over why not do make overs and put a smiley face on notorious figures like Idi Amin Dada, Saddam Hussein, Augusto Pinochet, François ‘Papa Doc’ Duvalier, Benito Mussolini and maybe the founding fathers of the US, many of whom were slave owners… Oops sorry, I went too far.. We are doing revisionist make overs of slavery,  thank to the Texas State Board of Education who want to refer to ‘slavery‘ as ‘Atlantic Triangular Trade’.

Also thanks to the Kentucky Tea Party and their esteemed Senator Rand Paul who want to disassociate the fact that our founding fathers were slave owners. Certainly we won’t dwell on the fact that two years ago congressional lawmakers after insisting on the Constitution be read during their swearing-in (112th congress), they  decided to skip over the parts where it was declared that Black people are 3/5th human.

So today as we celebrate Ronald Reagan Day lets remind the kids what this man was all about.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPyjJ1MMUzQ

Should we start be reminding folks that Ronald Reagan was the ultimate corporate pitchman? Should we tell how he started out working for General Electric which as you know is one of the world’s largest weapons makers and that he modeled himself to be the ultimate peddler of corporate interests. He was one of the first indicators that the presidency was no longer for the people but for the corporation. Reagan was the personification. In their new documentary Rendezvous with Destiny, GE lays out how Reagan selling skills laid the groundwork for his assent to being the nation’s 40th president.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPfZ74TesSc

Ronald ReaganShould we remind the kids that Reagan was a union buster?  We should dig deep into the archives and look at the Air Traffic Controllers strike of 1981 where Reagan fired 11,ooo workers and ultimately got the union Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) de-certified. Reagan’s mass firing was a major line drawn in the sand. The demonizing and attacks on unions especially those within the federal government have been going ever since.

Should we remind the kids how Reagan ignored the AIDs epidemic that sprung up during his two terms? People were dying all over and good ole Ronnie was steadfast in not talking about the dreaded disease in any form or fashion. The sad joke at the time was he cared more about UFO’s than he did victims of AIDs.  Ronnie was out to lunch on that crises.

Speaking of lunch, maybe we should teach the kids about how Ronald Reagan insisted that ketchup and relish were vegetables as he aggressively fought to push inner city school lunch programs to cut cooked and fresh vegetables from their menus. 30 years later we have a major health problems especially in the area of obesity amongst our youth.. Thanks Ronnie you did good.

Perhaps we should remind the kids that under Reagan, the Legal Aid Corporation was defanged. This meant that unscrupulous landlords, corporations and utility companies were free to take advantage and abuse consumers, knowing that the people they were jacking wouldn’t be able to get effective legal assistance to fight back.

Reagan Gun ControlI could always teach the kids about Reagan’s trickle down economic theory where he fought to allow rich corporations and businesses to cut taxes which would allow them to create new jobs thus benefitting the masses. I guess I should also teach the kids how many of those rich folks who got those tax breaks promptly took their American jobs overseas where they continued to enjoy tax breaks while our economy was turned upside down..

I’ll be sure to teach the kids how Reagan opposed the Equal Rights Amendment even though women at that time and even today still make less than men. we’ll also remind the kids about Reagan’s tricknology. He promised to name a woman to the supreme court (Sandra Day O’Connor) if the ERA was defeated. The end result is as we celebrate Reagan’s birthday he gets props for opening up the supreme court while forgetting that he threw the average everyday working woman under the bus.

We could also talk about how he was vehemently opposed to the Black Panthers and pushed for the Mulford Act which was specifically designed to target and disarm them. Thats when Reagan and the NRA were for gun control.

We should also remind the kids that Ronald Wilson Reagan opposed the 1965 Voting Rights Act which was championed by Dr Martin Luther King. He said its passage was a ‘humiliation to the South’.

The Father of Crack

I guess because so many kids are enamored with rap star Rick Ross, perhaps I could use his popularity as a teachable moment. I could start by letting kids know that Ross the rapper from Miami derived his name from Freeway Rick the drug dealer out of Los Angeles.

Freeway Rick who has been touring the country lecturing against the harmful impact of drugs is erroneously called the Father of Crack.  His South Central LA operations is legendary as he’s reported to have moved up to 3 million dollars worth of product a week,  but that’s only part of the story. Freeway Rick was not the Father but the proverbial God son.. The real Father of Crack was Ronald Reagan. It’s a sore point of contention to Reagan revisionists who bristle at the notion, but we know better.

You see Freeway Rick was allowed to flourish because our government at the time had some dirty war business they wanted to conduct and found it difficult to circumvent the law and limits set up by Congress. Freeway Rick was able to lavish the hood with tons of crack cocaine because of little scheme we came to know as the Iran Contra Scandal . It was the biggest scandal this country had ever known. Even bigger than Richard Nixon’s Watergate.

To sum it up what you had was in the early 80s, the US was beefing with Iran and the US was beefing with left leaning factions in Nicaragua called the Sandinistas. Reagan and his boys wanted to knock off the Sandinistas because they didn’t like their politics and the populus movement they represented. Latin America was on the rise and overthrowing dictators who were backed by the US. Reagan wanted to overthrow the Sandinistas by arming a bunch of CIA backed rebels called the Contras. Since we’re supposed to be a freedom loving country we couldn’t do our bidding publicly, and as I noted Congress wasnt with the program, so Reagan’s senior advisors launched a secret war.

What they did was covertly sell arms to Iran and take the money and use it to fund Contra operations in Nicaragua. Additional money was netted for the Contras through the sale of crack cocaine which suddenly overnight gained huge popularity in hoods throughout the country. Freeway Rick and South Central, LA was ground zero.

LAs notorious gangs became the main traffickers who spread all out the country with Freeway Rick being the kingpin. Some of this is outlined in Ice Cube’s song ‘Summer Vacation‘.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXrWIyCW-7E

Freeway Rick’s connection to all the cocaine was a notorious drug supplier named Oscar Danilo Blandón who worked with the CIA and was a key link to the Contras. This is where the whole CIA-Crack connection story emerged . They were outlined in the explosive 1996 San Jose Mercury expose and book called Dark Alliances written by the late Gary Webb.

Oliver North

When all was said and done damn near all of Reagan’s senior advisors were convicted, like National Security Council member Oliver North who played a central role and was later pardoned. Reagan the Great Communicator was protected with folks saying he had no idea all this was happening on his watch. The exact term used was Reagan was ‘disengaged’

Supporter of Apartheid

The term disengaged is an interesting one because it’s in opposition to what Ronald Reagan prided himself. Here was a guy who supported South Africa’s Apartheid Regime. He aggressively opposed Nelson Mandela who was in jail as a political prisoner during Reagan’s presidency. Reagan called Mandela and his and the African National Congress a ‘terrorist organization‘.

During the early 80s, worldwide resistance to South Africa emerged including a call from the UN to have an embargo. Recording artists all over the world launched a boycott to Sun City which was a popular resort in South Africa where some of the Apartheid laws were relaxed.

Ronald Reagan Opposed Nelson Mandela. He saw him and the African National Congress as Terrorists

Ronald Reagan along with Israel and Great Britain opposed all of it. Reagan said he supported South Africa because they stood alongside us during all our wars.. He said the best way to get rid of Apartheid was not through embargos but through this term he coined called  ‘Constructive engagement‘. When he first used it left everyone stunned and asking WTF? There was nothing to engage. People were calling for an end to the brutal Apartheid regime and Reagan was opposing it. It was so bad that after he vetoed sanctions, Congress did a rare thing and over rode his veto.  This man who supposedly loved freedom was on the wrong side of history when it came to making sure it was a reality for Black South Africans. It’s no wonder Nelson Mandela didn’t attend his funeral in 2004.

We can go on and on when talking about Ronald Reagan. He was a hero for those who yearned for the days when many people in marginalized communities were behind the 8 ball not in front of it.  Yes when February 6th rolls around.. I will say Happy Ronald Reagan Day and commence to undo the revisionist history the power elite in this country have spent years constructing. I’ll leave with two musical heroes who went in hard on Reagan back in the days. Gil Scott Heron with the song B-Movie and Melle-Mel with his song Jesse.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56ipWM3DWe4

Melle-Mel recorded praising Jesse Jackson-It one of the earliest rap songs encouraging folks to Get Out and Vote

In the song Jesse, Melle-Mel goes in on Reagan with this classic verses.

See Ronald Reagan speaking on TV, smiling like everything’s fine and dandy
Sounded real good when he tried to give a pep talk to over 30 million poor people like me
How can we say we got to stick it out when his belly is full and his future is sunny?
I don’t need his jive advice but I sure do need his jive time money
The dream is a nightmare in disguise (Let’s talk about Jesse)
Red tape and lies fill your for spacious skies (Let’s talk about Jesse)
But don’t think that DC just did it first (Let’s talk about Jesse)
There’s a lot of DC’s all over this universe (His name is Jesse)
He started on the bottom, now he’s on the top
He proved that he could make it, so don’t ever stop
Brothers stand together and let the whole world see
Our brother Jesse Jackson go down in history

The 30th day that’s in December is a day that everyone’s gonna remember
Because on that day a righteous man, thought about taking a brand new stand
The name of the man is Jesse Jackson and his call is for peace without an action
‘Cause now is the time to change the nation without just another negotiation
He went to the East for human rights to free a lieutenant shot down in flight
Just another statistic and the government knew it, they didn’t even want the man to go do it
Before he left, he called the president’s home and Reagan didn’t even answer the phone
But I tell you one thing and that’s a natural fact, you can bet he calls Jesse when Jesse got back

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3IsCfMB0rk

As we conclude.. lets celebrate Ronald Reagan Day with enthusiasm.. He was a piece of work that has been handsomely made over. If they can do it for him, they can do it for you. That means there’s hope for the most vile among us..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lIqNjC1RKU

 

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

Kevin Powell: Kool Herc, Hip Hop and Healthcare

WRITER’S NOTE: Please visit this site right away to learn more about Kool Herc and how you can support him during his time of medical challenges: http://www.djkoolherc.com/

Click HERE to listen to our Hard Knock Radio interview w/ Kevin Powell

I can’t even remember the first instance I heard the name “Kool Herc,” but I am fairly certain it was during the mid to late 1980s. Ronald Reagan was president, Jesse Jackson was, well, different, a new jack filmmaker named Spike Lee was stirring the pot called Hollywood, and I was a young and avid “hiphop head.”

Ever since I digested the boom-bap strands of hiphop in the late 1970s in my native Jersey City, New Jersey (my hometown’s local hiphop heroes was a crew called Sweet, Slick, and Sly) I was hooked. The Sugar Hill Gang’s landmark song “Rapper’s Delight,” which I would later learn plagiarized lyrics from Grandmaster Caz of the legendary Cold Crush Brothers, was the shot heard ‘round the world. Kurtis Blow was hiphop’s first solo superstar. Afrika Bambaataa was the spiritual and musical emissary from funk and soul to hiphop. Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five spoke so poignantly to my then-ghetto existence that I cried, hard, the first time I heard “The Message.” And Run-DMC was for us bboys and bgirls what The Beatles had been for screaming White teens two decades earlier.

Fitted Lee Jeans with stitched creases, suede Pumas, Le Tigre shirts, Kangols, name belts, baseball caps with sketched designs in the front folded on top with paper stuffed inside thus the caps floated on our heads like royal crowns, magic markers in our front or back pockets so we could tag our names here there everywhere (my tag was my nickname, “kepo1”), and so many of us popping locking breaking moonwalking doing the Pee Wee Herman the trot the wop the smurf the running man. We had no idea we were in the middle of a cultural revolution, but that is exactly what it was. And I am sure most of us did not know it was Kool Herc who kick-started the whole thing.

Right after my high school years I left Jersey City and went to college at Rutgers University where I would stumble upon the anti-apartheid movement, Black and Latino history in ways I had never contemplated previously, an upper class student named Lisa Williamson who would later change her name to Sister Souljah, and a spirit of activism that has been with me ever since. Indeed, we did not call it “hiphop activism” back then, but that is precisely what folks like myself, Souljah, Ras Baraka, April Silver, and many other Black and Latino babies of the Civil Rights Movement were doing, to a hiphop beat. Organizing in welfare hotels in mid-town Manhattan; building a summer camp for poor youth in North Carolina; re-registering voters in the Deep South; marching against police brutality here there everywhere; and staging state of the youth rallies and concerts in Harlem and Brooklyn.

It was somewhere between my trips to clubs with names like The Rooftop, Union Square, and Funhouse, and that work as a youth and student organizer, that his name first pushed its way into my consciousness:

Kool Herc, the father of hiphop—

But the details were sketchy at best:

Born in Jamaica as Clive Campbell.

Came to America in the late 1960s, on the heels of the Civil Rights Movement.

Heavily influenced by great artists of the funk and soul era, including James Brown.

Lived in The Bronx, one of New York City’s five boroughs, and the birthplace of hiphop culture.

Earned his nickname, “Hercules,” because of his height, frame, and demeanor on the basketball court as a youth. It was later shortened to Herc. And DJ Kool Herc & The Herculoids would become one of the early groundbreaking hiphop acts.

Along with Afrika Bambaataa and Grandmaster Flash widely considered the founding fathers, and the holy trinity of hiphop.

Generally credited with creating “the break beat” in the early 1970s, a djing technique that forms a critical foundation for hiphop music.

And that is essentially what I would know until far into the 1990s, when I first met Kool Herc in person at one or another hiphop program attempting to make hiphop into the political movement it never was, and that it will never be.

For hiphop is a cultural movement with political roots and political overtones, no question, but I have always been clear, even as a youth, that leaders have to emerge from hiphop’s multiple generations who, while nurtured on hiphop culture, must engage and work with the artists and iconic figures of our day just the way, say, Malcolm X engaged Sam Cooke, Maya Angelou, and Muhammad Ali or Martin Luther King, Jr. engaged Aretha Franklin and Harry Belafonte. Artists, cultural icons, can highlight, reflect, and support a movement, but those of us with real organizing skills and consistent activist mindsets must be the ones to make movements happen. The artists inspire activists to do what we do, and we activists inspire the artists to do what they do. And every now and then a great artist also happens to also be a great activist. (Think of Bono of the rock group U2, or Chuck D, front man for Public Enemy.)

That, for sure, is what we were doing in the late 1980s and early 1990s here in New York City, and in other parts of America. Making a movement go as we connected with everyone from LL Cool J and MC Lyte to Doug E Fresh and Ice Cube. But somewhere things went awry, many of us young activists fell off and out of the work for the people, and what we thought was a burgeoning social movement for change, fueled by hiphop, got decimated by a shift in what the corporations were suddenly permitting to be marketed and sold, with enthusiasm. Or not.

In other words, ever since the early 1990s we’ve had those of us who represent hiphop culture, with its five core elements (djing, mcing, dancing, graffiti writing, and knowledge). And then there is the hiphop industry, the bastard child of the culture, manipulated, twisted, and bent out of shape by a few corporations more interested in a dollar bill than the holistic development and natural growth of this art form. That is why we’ve been bombarded with over-the-top cursing and use of the N word, glorified violence, sexism and a ruthless disrespect for women and girls, excessive materialism, and soft porn and gangsterism passing as music videos for far too long. I am a writer, an artist myself, so I do not believe in censorship in any form. I am also a history buff, so I know full well our society is riddled with racism, sexism, violence, anti-intellectualism, and materialism, and that hiphop did not create any of these things. Hiphop, being the dominant cultural expression it is, simply is the most immediate and accessible frame flashing, 100 beats per minute, what is very wrong in too many to count American ‘hoods, both urban and suburban.

B-fresh photography

Likewise, what I do believe is missing is balance. Yes, I am absolutely clear that hiphop is a multicultural movement, belonging to people of all races, ethnicities, cultures, throughout the globe. And I love that I have come across, say, Israeli and Palestinian hiphoppers using the music to talk peace, or Italian, German, or French hiphoppers learning English via the music, or South African or Latin American hiphoppers using it as a tool for social change, or Asian American hiphoppers in California who love, embrace, and represent the culture far more than the offspring of the founders do. But the harsh reality is that the images we see, the sagas of mayhem we hear most, are of Black and Latino people. This is not just damaging to our psyches, just as crack cocaine was, but it is damaging to our spirits. And we’ve become stuck in a very vicious cycle where I sometimes wonder how many of us truly grasp that there is nothing wrong with rhyming about the ghetto, about parties and material things, if we also are expanding our worldviews enough to discuss other concerns, too. But that can’t happen if specific gatekeepers in the industry game block that kind of personal and cultural evolution from occurring.

A Lil’ Wayne, talented and fascinating as he is, is put on a mighty big pedestal because he is not really saying much at all and has become a cartoonish figure merely there for entertainment and shock value. Meanwhile, someone as intelligent and insightful as a Talib Kweli has to grind, hard, just for airplay, gigs, and our Twitter attention spans. As long as that kind of awful imbalance exists, then you can bet your bottom buck that Kool Herc and every other hiphop pioneer are not a part of conversations around the state of hiphop, the culture or the industry.

And just as there is a huge gap between older folks who know and can speak to the social struggles of bygone eras and the youth who often do not know those tales, there too is a huge gap between we heads who understand the history and traditions of hiphop, and those who actually believe it must’ve begun with Tupac or The Notorious B.I.G. I wish I were exaggerating, but the things I have heard in my travels across America about what hiphop is or is not are often, at best, numbing. No fault of our own, it is simply not taught in the schools, as it should be at this point. And God knows very few grade or high schools, or colleges or universities, ever consider bringing a living, breathing hiphop legend in to guest lecture, to be an artist in residence, especially given how much hiphop music and culture have penetrated every single crevice of American society.

And that is why quite a few who claim to love and be hiphop do not even know who Kool Herc is. And why those who have benefited, culturally, spiritually, and, yes, monetarily, have rarely engaged him from this thing we call hiphop. And this thing called hiphop, which was, for the most part, created by poor, working-class African Americans, West Indians, and Latinos in New York City, with a parallel energy generated by Latinos and Black on the West Coast in the 1970s, is now a multi-billion dollar global industry, and the dominant cultural expression on the planet for 30plus years and counting.

Afrika Bambaataa & Kool Herc credit Ernie Paniciolli

That, I imagine, is why Kool Herc and other pioneers of hiphop have always made it a point to stand up at various hiphop-related events and state who they are—sometimes with love and respect, sometimes with shades of bitterness and resentment framing the edges of their mouths—because if they do not, then they would remain largely invisible, or completely ignored. Think about how, for example, Black basketball trailblazers from back in the day, the ones documented in that great ESPN film “Black Magic,” must feel when they hear of the millions a LeBron James can command because of the sweat and blood equity they put in when there was no cable television, no endorsement deals, and these players were just as likely to be the victims of racial injustices as cheers.

As a matter of fact, I recall when I curated the very first exhibit on the history of hiphop culture in America, at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in 1999, I encountered this kind of weariness, born of years of neglect, on numerous occasions. But I also remember the great joy many of these hiphop legends displayed because they were being recognized for their contributions. Unfortunately, that exhibit was so woefully under-funded, that we had to scrape together sponsors as best we could just to mount the show and fly pioneers there. For all the billions of dollars hiphop has made our economy and certain corporate giants, the great irony is how some still don’t view it as a legitimate art form, then and now. Regardless, as you can imagine, it was profoundly moving to meet, one by one, the architects of hiphop. Folks with names like Lady Pink, Popmaster Fabel, Lee Quinones, and an army of others. But the one person who always had the greatest mystique around him, without question, was Kool Herc.

For the record, we need to understand that Kool Herc is to hiphop what individuals like Big Mama Thornton, Louis Jordan, Chuck Berry, and Little Richard are to the history of rock and roll. Or what Jelly Roll Morton and The Creole Band are to jazz: visionary figures that far ahead of their time that they have been taken for granted, save a handful of diehard fans and historians.

And therein lies the enormous dilemma of Kool Herc’s current health condition. According to his sister Cindy Campbell who, as long as I can remember, has always been there supporting the legacy of her brother, Herc was hospitalized last October. He has serious kidney stones and they must be removed. $10,000 worth of medical bills have been piled up, and there is a need, according to Cindy, to raise at least $25,000 to cover expenses tied to this very necessary surgical procedure.

And Kool Herc, founding father of hiphop, is like so many dwelling in America: He does not have health insurance. Kool Herc makes his living djing and speaking, but he undoubtedly has not been treated in the way rock and jazz heroes and sheroes are treated.

Moreover, such a twisted paradox, this theme of Kool Herc’s lack of healthcare coverage, as we watch lawsuit after lawsuit being filed, throughout our nation, to dismantle President Obama’s historic legislation. And the Republican-dominated House of Representatives has already voted to repeal the president’s healthcare reform. Although that will not happen in the Democratic-controlled Senate chamber, the House vote is, assuredly, part of a long-term strategy aimed at undermining and derailing our president’s legislation.

To put this in a different context, as Kool Herc was setting foot in America in the late 1960s, Dr. King was publicly condemning the war in Vietnam and ultimately calling for “a poor people’s campaign.” For Dr. King understood that true democracy could never be fully realized in America if each and every one of us did not have access to the most basic of needs, including a quality education, a decent place to live, an opportunity to work, and the ability to get help if we were to take ill.

Dr. King was assassinated, and as quickly as major civil rights victories were won, conservative forces moved to dismantle or destroy them. That is why I always say to those critical of hiphop to keep in mind that if Kool Herc and others had not created this art form in the first place, there would be even more Blacks and Latinos, especially, who are unemployed, on the streets committing crimes, in jail, and without healthcare, or without anyone to petition for us to get help as hiphop icon DJ Premiere initially did for Kool Herc.

Cindy Campbell

“Herc wants to use this to bring awareness, not just about healthcare,” says Cindy Campbell. She adds: “There are so many other hiphop legends in similar situations, but they are not Kool Herc, so no one is going to rally around them. We want to create a foundation, a union, a fund, that makes sure these pioneers are protected in their time of need.”

And that is what we who truly care need to do. I have been bombarded with facebook messages and tweets from individuals not only angry and disturbed that Kool Herc is in this position, but also that certain hiphop luminaries are not moving, quickly or at all, to cover Herc’s medical bills. Names are being called. And hiphop moguls and superstars are being denigrated publicly. I personally don’t think that is the way to go. If the wealthy in hiphop America want to step up, they will. I hope they do, but I am not expecting much at this point given how much our culture has deteriorated into a space of spiritual imbalance and extreme individualism at the expense of the larger hiphop world. When any people, community, or culture has been dumbed down that much by forces beyond our comprehension, then it is not difficult to get why someone as valuable as a Kool Herc is as easily discarded as one’s last text message, or one’s last order of fast food.

Thus, what would be much more effective is, again, that permanent fund or foundation to support hiphop pioneers and classic hiphop artists just like we see with other genres of popular music. That way we never again have one of our legends sitting without healthcare as they make their way through their 50s, 60s, and beyond.

Additionally, I echo Cindy’s contention that hiphop, after all these years, needs to be recognized by our country, on a federal level, for the great cultural contributions it has made to America, and to the planet. No Kool Herc, no hiphop, and there would be no Queen Latifah, no Will Smith, no Jay-Z, no Russell Simmons, no Eminem, no mass popularity of professional basketball, no swagger to President Obama’s walk, no street teams as a marketing concept, and no spice to our American vocab (Do we really think catchphrases like “I’m good” just fall from the sky?).

Similarly, my friend, Toni Blackman, is not only one of the best freestyle rappers in the world, but she has made a career of being an American cultural ambassador, traveling from nation to nation, as a hiphop artist, crossing boundaries in the same way that American jazz musicians, for years, have done with the U.S. State Department.

Imagine if someone in Washington acknowledges our hiphop legends for their cultural contributions. It would be the path to truly honoring and recognizing a Kool Herc, an Afrika Bambaataa, a Grandmaster Flash, a Cold Crush Brothers, a Rock Steady Crew, a Universal Zulu Nation, an Ernie Paniciolli (the dean of hiphop photographers), and the numerous founding fathers and mothers of hiphop culture.

By treating them like the national treasures that they are—

Kevin Powell is a public speaker, activist, and author or editor of 10 books, including Open Letters to America (Soft Skull). Kevin was a 2010 Democratic candidate for the United States Congress in New York City. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, and can be emailed at kevin@kevinpowell.net.

We Remember the Father of Crack & a Key Supporter of Apartheid-Ronald Wilson Reagan

We Remember Ronald Reagan,  the Father of Crack and a Supporter of Apartheid
by Davey D

So yesterday Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger strolled into Simi Valley and with the stroke of a pen he made February 6th Ronald Reagan Day. He also vetoed a bill that would allow Farm Workers to be paid overtime. I found it interesting but not all that surprising that we would have that sort of coupling. After all, we’re honoring a man who was all about exploitation and sadly that trait was underscored with a veto. But let’s not digress..

Governor Schwarzenegger said we need to use Feb 6th as a day to teach school kids about the great accomplishments of Ronald Wilson Reagan. He said we need to teach the kids about this man’s legacy.I guess he feels kids should grow up to be like Reagan. I had to laugh because there’s so much to say and its hard to know where to begin.

Should we start by reminding the kids how Reagan ignored the AIDs epidemic that sprung up during his two terms? I contrast Reagan’s ignoring of HIV and AIDs when people suffering from the then unknown disease were begging for help with how we went all out for the Swine Flu.  Ronnie was out to lunch on that crises.

Maybe I should teach the kids about how he insisted that ketchup and relish were vegetables as he aggressively fought to push inner city school lunch programs to cut cooked and fresh vegetables from their menus.

I could always teach the kids about Reagan’s trickle down economic theory where he fought to allow rich corporations and businesses to cut taxes which would allow them to create new jobs thus benefitting the masses. I guess I should also teach the kids how many of those rich folks who got those tax breaks promptly took their American jobs overseas where they continued to enjoy tax breaks while our economy was turned upside down..

I’ll be sure to teach the kids how Reagan opposed the Equal Rights Amendment even though women at that time and even today still make less than men.

We could also talk about how he was vehemently opposed to the Black Panthers and pushed for the Mulford Act which was specifically designed to target and disarm them

The Father of Crack

I guess because so many kids are enamored with rap star Rick Ross, perhaps I could use his popularity as a teachable moment. I could start by letting kids know that Ross the rapper from Miami derived his name from Freeway Rick the drug dealer out of Los Angeles.

Freeway Rick who has been touring the country lecturing against the harmful impact of drugs is erroneously called the Father of Crack.  His South Central operations is legendary as he’s reported to have moved up to 3 million dollars worth of product a week,  but that’s only part of the story. Freeway Rick was not the Father but the proverbial God son.. The real Father of Crack was Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States. The man we came to affectionately call the ‘Great Communicator‘.

You see Freeway Rick was allowed to flourish because our government at the time had some dirty war business they wanted to conduct and found it difficult to circumvent the law and limits set up by Congress. Freeway Rick was able to lavish the hood with tons of crack cocaine because of little scheme we came to know as the Iran Contra Scandal . It was the biggest scandal this country had ever known. Even bigger than Richard Nixon’s Watergate.

To sum it up what you had was in the early 80s, the US was beefing with Iran and the US was beefing with left leaning factions in Nicaragua called the Sandinistas. Reagan and his boys wanted to knock off the Sandinistas because they didn’t like their politics and the populus movement they represented. Latin America was on the rise and overthrowing dictators who were backed by the US. Reagan wanted to overthrow the Sandinistas by arming a bunch of CIA backed rebels called the Contras. Since we’re supposed to be Freedom Loving country we couldn’t do our bidding publicly, and as I noted Congress wasnt with the program, so Reagan’s senior advisors launched a secret war.

What they did was covertly sell arms to Iran and take the money and use it to fund Contra operations in Nicaragua. Additional money was netted for the Contras through the sale of crack cocaine which suddenly overnight gained huge popularity in hoods throughout the country. Freeway Rick and South Central, LA was ground zero.

LAs notorious gangs became the main traffickers who spread all out the country with Freeway Rick being the kingpen. Some of this is out lined in Ice Cube’s song ‘Summer Vacation‘.

Freeway Rick’s connection to all the cocaine was a notorious drug supplier named Oscar Danilo Blandón who worked with the CIA and was a key link to the Contras. This is where the whole CIA-Crack connection story emerged . They were outlined in the explosive 1996 San Jose Mercury expose and book called Dark Alliances written by the late Gary Webb.

Oliver North

When all was said and done damn near all of Reagan’s senior advisors were convicted, like National Security Council member Oliver North who played a central role and was later pardoned. Reagan the Great Communicator was protected with folks saying he had no idea all this was happening on his watch. The exact term used was Reagan was ‘disengaged’

Supporter of Apartheid

Thats an interesting term because it’s in opposition to what Ronald Reagan prided himself on. Here was a guy who supported South Africa’s Apartheid Regime. He aggressively opposed Nelson Mandela who was in jail as a political prisoner during Reagan’s presidency. Reagan called Mandela and his and the African National Congress a ‘terrorist organization‘.

During the early 80s, worldwide resistance to South Africa emerged including a call from the UN to have an embargo. Recording artists all over the world launched a boycott to Sun City which was a popular resort in South Africa where some of the Apartheid laws were relaxed.

Ronald Reagan Opposed Nelson Mandela. He saw him and the Adfrican national Congress as Terrorists

Ronald Reagan along with Israel and Great Britain opposed all of it. Reagan said he supported South Africa because they stood alongside us during all our wars.. He said the best way to get rid of Apartheid was not through embargos but through this term he coined called  ‘Constructive engagement‘. When he first used it left everyone stunned and asking WTF? There was nothing to engage. People were calling for an end to the brutal Apartheid regime and Reagan was opposing it. It was so bad that after he vetoed sanctions, Congress did a rare thing and over rode his veto.  This man who supposedly loved freedom was on the wrong side of history when it came to making sure it was a reality for Black South Africans. It’s no wonder Nelson Mandela didn’t attend his funeral in 2004.

We can go on and on when talking about Ronald Reagan. He was a hero for those who yearned for the days when many people in marginalized communities were behind the 8 ball not in front of it.  Yes when February 6th rolls around.. I will say Happy Ronald Reagan Day and commence to undo the revisionist history the power elite in this country have spent years constructing. I’ll leave with two musical heros who went in hard on Reagan back in the days. Gil Scott Heron with the song B-Movie and Melle-Mel with his song Jesse.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56ipWM3DWe4

http://www.swift.fm/mrdaveyd/song/54175/

Click HERE to peep song..

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner