Happy Black History Month!! Today We Salute… BET

Today we celebrate BET and their inspirational programming… hold on, I threw up on my keyboard a little.  Let me wipe it clean, ;lkhjuyjikol;.,lmkjnbhujik

Okay, back to Black Entertainment Television, nice name.  Not an accurate name, but nice, there is nothing entertaining about it and what they consider Black borders on slightly embarrassing and a waste of talent.  I would rather see Malcolm Jamal-Warner selling oranges on the side of an expressway than watch him rot away on one more episode of Reed Between the Lines.  Only BET could take a good concept for a sitcom featuring a Black family and remove the humor and soul from it.  Some things should be left to ABC or CBS… only if they were interested in Black talent.  Sadly, you are our only hope for uplifting programming that features people who look like us.

To your credit BET, you have worked hard to avoid any drama you use to constantly associate yourself with and that can be called… progress?  Instead of being a ‘music video’ network, you decided to focus on actual programming, poorly, but you focused on it anyway.  Today on BET is mostly reruns of decent Black comedies, hood movies, and on Sundays 4 to 6 hours of Chit’lin circuit plays featuring talented Black actors dying slowly in front of our eyes.  Gone are 17 hours of videos, with one hour of ‘Black news’, followed by an hour of bad comedy, to be topped off with an hour of ‘mature’ music videos meant for adults but kids watched all the time… 3 hours of infomercials a half an hour of Joyce Meyers and Joel Osteen ministries each and back to videos.  I miss the days when the only advertisements you had were that “Rough Side of the Mountain” Gospel compilation “WHO IN THE HELL LEFT THE GATE OPEN” and the classic “Hey Love” compilation that featured 3 Black couple belly rubbing in a living room listening to an actual record (no 3 Black couples actually did that)… “Hey man you got to let me borrow that?”, say it with me people…  “NO MY BROTHER!  YOU GOT TO GET YOUR OWN”.

How we miss the days of The Mayor of Rap City, pushing the envelope and providing a space for the voiceless to have their say.  We think we miss when you were introducing artists, comics, and covering events that were impacting our community.  We think we miss these things, but as the network that ‘represents’ what is good in our community if you are not showing it to us, we must not really miss it.  Who are we to crave substance and credibility?  You keep telling us what we must like.

You are an equal opportunity employer as well; you will make anyone famous, even if they do not have talent.  After joining Def Comedy Jam to introduce great comics to us.  When Russell Simmons realized that the talent was running thin on good Black comics, they shut down production where as you let every hack in the world fly out to any place you were filming gave them five minutes and paid them nothing for their efforts.  Even repeatedly airing their material and not offering them one cent in residuals, nice.  Your pimp game is strong!  It took white comics like Jerry Seinfeld to ask for comics to boycott your shows until you paid your comics fairly.  When you finally agreed to pay at ‘scale’ you finally went the Def Jam route and shut down.  Although, you claim to have made more Black people millionaires… outside of the NBA.  It is always nice to see Black people play into a stereotype, now that’s progress!

We must give you credit for the one thing you do well, the BET Awards.  You do know an awards show is not about the awards but about the music and the performances.  Unfortunately, you let untalented people walk onto your stage and treat them like they are selling records like Prince in 1983.  You are like Jesse Jackson, supposedly our voice but nobody remembers selecting you to speak for us.  We have come to accept that you will reward those that limit our culture, you are not Fox News you have never claimed to be fair and balanced.  August Wilson, arguably one of the greatest play writes Black or White of the 20th Century, passed away without a blip from you.  Even though his plays launched the careers of many of our finest actors, including Denzel Washington, but if Tyler Perry died we know you will shut down what you call programming all week-long in memory of great American writer/director/activist… I am sorry, I threw up on my keyboard again.  A lot this time, let me wipe this off again, ‘[;phyjumgtfbvnhjmhjmhjmhjmhjmhjmhjmhjmhjmbjuki9867yugtbhjnuikmo897yuhjni9 043oilk-09.  Sorry about that.

Only you BET can present a show saying how much Black women rock right after airing 3 hours of videos where women walk around in G-strings, bouncing up and down around rappers lip-synching songs talking about how much they do not respect them. We all love that you tell our young men they can be more than rappers & felons then make Lil Wayne’s release from jail “breaking news”. Thanks BET for… All you do?  Oh Lord… I threw up again!!!  P’7yukjiop-0897uiljko09iojfhyupio6y89iojp0899709uiogjpu089yioj  Actually that is really symbolic… BET has been throwing up vomit on our community for over 15 years now.  Happy Black History Month BET!  Are you guys doing anything special for it this year?

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Happy Black History Month!!! Today We Salute… Jeremy Lin (yes he is everywhere)

We are gonna get it lin today!  Not ‘in’, Lin… as in Jeremy Lin.  Yes Jeremy Lin is everywhere; he has even invaded Black History Month celebrations.  Sure he has obviously spent a lot of time with brothas, next time you see him being interviewed, close your eyes for a few seconds… sounds like he is from your local projects.  One chick thinks he is Black:

4.2 GPA coming out of high school raised in Palo Alto, California, Harvard educated… Asian!  This dude sounds more like your next boss, not like the franchise altering point guard the Knicks have been looking for since Earl “the Pearl” Monroe’s knees gave him the finger way back in 1980.

We celebrate Jeremy Lin because he did what rap music couldn’t do, he did what Wesley Snipes’ action films could not do, Kobe tried his best to do… he is making Asian kids put random B.S. in front of their education.  We miscalculated; we got our Latino brother’s and Latina sisters rolling real hard with us in the hood.  If you are from an island living in Florida or New York City, you live near us and face the same issues we do.  Thanks to N.W.A. we were able to get White kids to start calling each other nigga and that was before Eminem.  We could not figure out how to get Asian kids to start lowering their standards.  We sent Michael Jackson over there to get them to lower their standards, they put on the ‘zipper’ jacket and the one glove learned how to moon walk but that was as far as they were willing to go.

We thought hip-hop had a chance, when we realized there was a fondness of early 90’s rap music we sent A Tribe Called Quest over on so many tours that they ended up picking up on styles of Asian cultures.  Not what we wanted, that was supposed to work in the other direction.  We even stepped up our hip-hop attack on Asia, let’s go harder!  We sent 50 Cent over on a media blitz that had not been seen since the Clinton administration tried to do ‘damage control’ after an unwashed blue dress was shown to a reporter.  Fiddy, as Jeremy Lin likes to call him, became a promotional darling in Asian countries making so much cash over there he may have paid more in taxes to Japan and China from 2004-2007 than he did to the US.  Damn they are slick!  We sent our secret weapon over there and he ended up working for them.

All of sudden Kobe Bryant began to appear as a cultural phenomenon and we were realized “basketball is our way in, we missed our chance with Jordan let’s seize the Kobe moment”!  We were even caught by surprise with Kobe, yeah he was known we had no idea that China was crazy about Kobe Bean.  Chinese citizens flooded USA Basketball games chanting “KOBE, KOBE, KOBE”… yes this is our chance no Black man has gotten this much love from another race since pre-murder OJ and Kobe had possibly raped a White woman (allegedly… allegedly!  I want to make that point clear, after his wife ran off with half his cash and all his houses; he may be in suing mood.  IDIOT ALWAYS MAKE HER SIGN THE PRENUPTUAL, I DON’T CARE HOW MUCH YOU LOVE HER!!!).  We were half right, right sport… wrong guy.

I hear what you are saying, yes there was Yao Ming but his work was to influence us.  His check went directly to the Chinese government, and then to him, he knew where his bread was buttered.  He made the Olympics in China possible he was worth hundreds of millions to the Republic of China.  We still did not see how to find our way into Asian cultures.  We tried, Beyonce didn’t work, Obama damn sure ain’t work for us over there… Michael Jackson died before we could roll him out there again for another try.

Then on February 4, 2012, at the beginning of Black History Month ironically, are secret weapon revealed himself to us.  Dropping 25 points and 7 dimes on the Nets, he then went out and ran through a few more teams until he finally hung 38 points on Kobe Bean proving he was the ‘chosen one’ and fittingly killing Kobe’s hopes of Asian dominance.  We had the guy we needed to make Asian people everywhere put down the books and pick up something that will surround them with some ignorance finally.

Jeremy Lin has made hanging out with brotha’s look cool.  Jeremy Lin hit the winning 3-pointer against the Toronto Raptors and the Knicks bench exploded.  The last time you saw that many brotha’s celebrating with an Asian kid was win Jin was killing it on 106 and Park and announced he signed with the Ruff Ryders (you thought I was gonna say something about a math competition, didn’t you?  You racist bastard!).  Now Asian kids are embracing their blackness and things brotha’s do.  Think I am making this up?  I work at a Museum in Chicago, today every Asian kid I saw in the place had on a basketball jersey, any basketball jersey… that would have been enough but they all gave me that ‘whassup’ head nod too!  It’s on!  Of course this is not about the entire Asian community, just the women.

Once all Asians see blackness as cool, Asian women may start dating a brotha, then another brotha.  Seriously, the only known Asian women to marry a Black man are the one’s ready to get of Korea in the 50’s and Dave Chappelle’s wife.  THANK YOU JEREMY LIN!!!!  You have achieved something no Black man has ever been able to do and I am not just talking about effectively run Mike D’Antoni’s offense (outside of you, only Steve Nash has been able to pull off the pick & roll properly for him).  Happy Black History Month to you and US!!!!

Happy Black History Month!!! Today We Salute… C.P. Time

My bad for posting so late, I got caught up… Thanks for holding me down.  Since I am late in putting this together let’s just go ahead and salute something found in every situation involving more than 4 Black people… Colored People Time (CPT)!  If you have to be some place on time, I hope you are not depending on Black people to help you get there.  If you do find yourself in a situation where the meeting starts in 15 minutes and the Black person you are riding with has noticed the bakery you are passing just opened and there isn’t a line, start getting your lie together.  That’s even if it is that simple as realizing you are going to be late.

Most CPT’ers cannot put a finger on why they are always late.  They eventually get to a point where their tardiness is their excuse for being tardy:

“Come on let’s get to the meeting”

“I ain’t in no rush.  They know I’m always late”

True, people have come to expect the CPT’er to arrive late, pushing anything that needs to be discussed with them present to the back of the agenda.  CPT’ers cannot tell you exactly why they are late, they leave on time.  They stopped to get gas, an Egg McMuffin, and a card for everyone to sign for the boss’ birthday.  That is not enough to make them real late.  The 10 minutes they spent checking their lottery numbers at the gas station, the 3 minutes it took for the attendant to check those numbers again, and the additional 5 minutes it took for them to get today’s numbers (no quick picks for a CPT’er) all before they got to the 10 second transaction of “20 dollars on pump 7” never factors in to their thought process.

The 4 minutes they spent staring at the McDonald’s menu, trying to figure out what to order, after spending 10 minutes in line complaining about ‘how can someone get to the front of the line and not know what they want’?  Only to order the same Egg McMuffin the CPT’er orders every day, add to the situation that this is a CPT’er we are talking about which means they stopped at a Black owned and operated McDonalds where the ‘fast’ in fast food in considered something to aspire to, not something to be applied today.  So add another five minutes to the standard 3 minute Micky D’s wait time.

Picking up the birthday card from the pharmacy was the easy part, walked right in, grabbed the first card in the birthday section that made reference to ‘Our Boss’ and the CPT’er made their way to check-out.  Oh, the magazines are here, and the new Jet Magazine is out.  If it is a woman CPT’er, they have to read that article about how Toni Braxton or LisaRaye overcame something, if the CPT’er is a brotha straight to the Jet Beauty of the Week, a check of the Top Singles and Albums, and one more good look at the Beauty of the Week.  By the time they arrive to work, the ‘birthday breakfast’ for their boss is about over and everyone had to awkwardly step out to sign the card without the big guy seeing them do so.  What is usually 30 minutes of errands for most people before work, the CPT’er turns into an hour and 47 minutes of randomness and a written warning from HR.

Let’s take some time to recognize some famous CPT’ers:

Dr. Dre: Made his fans wait 7 years for the follow-up to The Chronic and is currently putting those same fans through a 13 year wait for his ‘final’ CD Detox.  It now takes Dr. Dre so long to complete projects that beats he has made for Detox just end up on the albums of people signed to his label, if they stay.  Contracts of some of his artists expire before he gets around to working with them. Last year he finally released a song that is listed as being from his upcoming Detox CD called “We Need A Doctor”… as in, “We need a doctor, to hurry the fuck up and release his album”.  Ironically, Dr. Dre is from Compton, California a city also known as the ‘C.P.T.’, can’t make this shit up folks.

Halle Berry:  Made brothers wait 13 years into her acting career before she showed us a titty.  Then she couldn’t stop showing her titties.  Most amazing thing is (other than her titties, honestly very nice.  I don’t know how they are holding up post babies), once she started showing the C-cups to us she won an Academy Award.  So she made herself wait too… she could have popped a titty out back in 1998 in Bullworth with Warren Beatty and saved herself the shame of begging Billy Bob Thornton to make her feel good.

The Black community’s recognition of their own economic power:  Real talk, still waiting on this.  Hold tight, this should have been here by now.

Kobe Bryant: It took Kobe Bryant 5 years to realize what most basketball fans already knew, he is no Michael Jordan and needs a star center by his side for him to win titles.  It took 10 years, even though his daddy Joe “Jellybean” Bryant screamed it at him in 2002, for Kobe to realize he DID need a prenuptial agreement.

Black Entertainment Television:  In what is an absolute record for CPT’ers… 25 years!!! 25 years is how late BET was to getting to something.  It took 25 years for BET to arrive to the conclusion they didn’t give a fuck about reporting the news, even when the news meant something to Black people.  When every cable network carried Corretta Scott-King’s funeral, BET put its big black middle finger up, took a swig of Hennessy and aired 106th and Park again.  Bye Ed Gordan, Bye Tavis Smiley, Bye Jackie Reid (that one hurt me most of all), bye accountability to your community.  Hello butt naked hoes in rap videos!!!

Happy Black History Month!!! Today We Salute… 2 Dollars

2 dollars have helped more Black People get by than a police escort. You want to see a Black person at their best?  Give us two dollars and get the hell out our way!  Today you see on Yahoo, the Food Network, and other places “How to prepare dinners for your family on $10 dollars a day”.  For $10 a Black family can get through 2 weeks of dinners.  I have personally seen Black people (from my grandmother to people on the blocks I have lived) turn two bucks into a full meal with leftovers for the next couple days.  Bag of beans from the corner store for 75 cents, grab some salt pork for 30 cents, a small container of milk for 35 cents, and grab a bag of cheap caramel at 50 cents for dessert.  That’s $1.90 with room to spare for when the store decides it wants to charge tax today.

Some of you see the meal I am talking about and your mouth is watering now.  Those of you that are thinking “what kind of meal is that and what the fuck is ‘salt pork’?” are about to get a lesson in ‘making it work’.  Salt pork is just that pork cured in salt and it is very, very cheap it has also caused more heart attacks than shoveling snow and walking in your home finding your woman bent over and getting raw dogged by the deacon of your church.  Along with the salt it is loaded with fat, actually there is very little actual pork; it should probably be called ‘salt fat’.  As we all know, fat TASTE GOOD and when it sits in some boiling water with a nice amount of seasonings whatever you add to it taste like you should pay way more than 2 dollars.  Even if you have a six-figure salary in the Black community, you still find yourself eating a salt pork flavored meal a few times a year.  You’ll have a stroke one day, but if you are already left-handed what do you care.

Add the beans to the pot of salt pork, water, and seasonings and leave it alone.  With the small container of milk, you hook up some cornbread.  That’s if you have eggs.  If you do not have eggs and the corner store won’t let you buy just 1 egg (oh yeah in the hood, depending on who is working or how cute the store owner thinks you are you can buy just 1).  So what if you don’t have eggs, you are asking and don’t you need cornmeal?  A little secret about Black people, there are a few things you can find at every Black home, a bottle of hot sauce, cornmeal and a picture of Malcolm X next to Martin Luther King Jr. sitting with Jesus.  With no eggs, we do not buy the small container of milk and apply that change to buy the bigger piece of salt pork.  Then we make HOT-WATER CORNBREAD!!!  Heck we make hot-water when we get money.  It is exactly what it sounds like, hot water and cornmeal.  The hot water begins to cook the cornmeal when combined and then you put in a pan, fry it up like a pancake and tell everyone you know you are making hot-water cornbread because it means you are eating something tasty with it.

When dinner time hits, which is usually around 8 PM in a Black house (we don’t eat too early white people, if we have dinner at 5 or 6 it means we will be hungry again at 9, who has money for that!  We got two dollars to last us until our check comes and this meal needs to drag out at least one more day) the kids run in see a bowl of beans with little pieces of meat floating in a thick gravy like sauce with a side of HOT-WATER CORNBREAD!  When we find out mom bought us candy too, we don’t even get upset when we find out that the only thing she could afford for us to drink was one packet of ‘red’ Flava-Aid.  MMM… this is bringing back memories, PASS THE HOT SAUCE!  I bet you want some of this Malcolm and Martin.

It just isn’t a pot of beans that we can make happen… a cheap loaf of bread, a 99 cent pound of ground beef, some ketchup and mustard packets snatched up from the cafeteria (or from the last time you could afford White Castles) and now you have ‘Burger Night’ at the poor little Black family home.  If you live buy yourself, McDonald’s is your best friend if you only have to try to make it through the night.  Two McDoubles or McChicken with small fries, hold off eating it until you are really sleepy and you can fall off to sleep with a satisfied tummy and wake up to payday.

Man $2 dollars can be your best friend in hard times.  As Tupac said in “Dear Mama”:

Working with the scraps you were given’

This is a survival instinct that is just in us, it dates back to slavery.  We had to take what was not wanted and make something we enjoyed out of it.  Why do you think the intestines of a pig have turned into a holiday delicacy for our people?  You heard the saying ‘from the rooter to the tooter’?  Now it means ‘the whole thing’, but it started from Black people talking about the pig.  We would (and still do) eat everything on the pig from the ‘rooter’ (the snout) to the ‘tooter’ (the tail, yes the tail!  Walk into a corner store in a Black community and right next to the pickled eggs, there should be a big jar of pickled pig-tails and an assortment of other ‘pickled’ items… except actual pickles.  We like our pickles individually wrapped in plastic coming in an assortment of flavors and heat levels)… WE EAT THE WHOLE PIG!  If you eat hot dogs at a baseball game, so do you!

We have written songs about 2 dollars:

OH I LOVE THAT SONG!  I have been in many a bar on the South Side, drunk, at 2 o’clock in the morning (the only time that song can legally be played in Chicago, Detroit, and Mississippi) singing that song louder than the DJ could play it or the band could sing it.

Sadly, we have to pay a solemn tribute to a 2 dollar classic never to be uttered again.  When you said this, you knew you were about to have a great night or go get something you been wanting for a long time (like that girl you been chasing since 11th grade), “let me get 2 dollars on pump number fo”, in the Black community from 1955 to 1998 that phrase was second only to “let me borrow… 2 dollars” in number of times heard per day.  Here’s to you 2 Dollars!!! We love you more than this country, most of our cousins, every member of Destiny’s Child not named Beyonce… but not as much as Marvin Gaye and the 1st of the Month. We celebrate those last 2 dollars because when we get to those last couple, that is exactly what is next…

Happy Black History Month!!! Today We Salute… The Hater

Today we salute the most controversial person of all the people we will honor in Black History Month… The Hater.  People say the best way to deal with the Hater is to ignore them, but Haters are not to be ignored, they refuse to be ignored, they will not let you ignore them, and you should not ignore them.  The Hater is confirmation that what you are doing is impressive.  So keep doing it!  Remember when you were good at baseball and everyone told you how well you were doing?  What happened?  You didn’t want to play baseball the next year, instead you learned how to smoke weed with your friends without getting caught.  Remember when your teacher told that you were good at Biology and that you should think about being a doctor?  Now you are pulling double-shifts at Wendy’s trying to keep a roof over your head and looking at those ‘you can still get a degree’ commercials they show during Judge Judy in the afternoon, like you still have hope.

You need the Hater; there was that time your brother told you that you would never beat him.  Within a year you were kicking his ass up and down the block, he started locking his door at night out of fear that you would walk in at 3 in the morning and resume the ass whupping.  Think about the time your friends said you couldn’t dance and laughed at you for hours, then days, then weeks about it.  That became a running joke on the block, so much so you stopped hanging out and stood in front of your TV watching Rap City and 106th and Park until you learned how to do the Bankhead Bounce, the Harlem Shake… the Roger Rabbit.  By the time the Spring Dance rolled up, you were killing it on the dance floor (if you did learn the Roger Rabbit, you were hurting the ankles of the person dancing behind you), man you were coming in 2nd and 3rd place at lunch hour dance competitions!  How about that time your ex told you that you would never amount to shit?  Well, the jury is still out on that one, but you are still trying to prove them wrong!  See, praise does nothing for you but a Hater can turn your whack ass into a star.

You think Barack Obama always wanted to be president?  Hell no, that brother wanted to be Dr. J, but you try being the only Black dude walking around a private high school in Hawaii, he got sick of being ignored by everyone but the basketball coach.  As soon as he could, took his but to the main land, started off in Cali, then finished up hitting the East Coast, finally settling in Chicago where a brotha has to be a brotha.  Before you knew it that dude was walking around the hood talking to people like he grew up on the South Side, eating rib tips, and eventually got him a big booty sista as confirmation of how you do the damn thing!  You see how he walked up to the podium after they killed Bin Laden?  You don’t “learn” that walk… you EARN that walk.  You earn it by putting Haters in their place.  He has Haters now, Mitt Romney, let the unemployment rate dip below 8% in the next couple of months, when people come to see Obama talk they are going to have to wait a couple of minutes from the time he gets to mic to when he says his first word.  Long enough for him to take off his hat, get a swig out his glass, and put on his sunglasses… so he can see what he’s saying!!

Remember how George Jefferson was walking during the opening credits of “The Jefferson’s”?  Remember how hard he was pimping as he escorted his woman into their new building up to their ‘deluxe penthouse in the sky-i-i’?  That was the first time George had ever walked like that, if you look really close you can see and lip read Weezy’s mouth you can see her saying “why in the fuck are you walking like that”?  He had no idea that was the first time he had ever walked like that.  People called it a ‘pimp’, that was not a ‘pimp walk’ that was George stepping on every Hater in his life.  With each step he crushed another Hater, “take that Archie Bunker”!

People focus on their ‘swag’ now; you cannot have swagga without having Haters.  When you see a 16-year-old kid walking around dressed like a fake member of Young Money, claiming that is their ‘swag’ they do not have it.  When you have Haters you do not need to dress a certain way, you just carry yourself a certain way.  You do not need skinny jeans that would just give the Hater another reason to hate on you.

You eventually realize there is nothing you can do about Haters, but appreciate their hate.  The Hater will talk about how your brand new, fresh off the lot, BMW 650i “ain’t all that”, then turn around and ask you for a ride to the ‘sto’.  A Hater will clown you about your new higher paying job, then send you an email at your work account asking if “y’all hiring”.  The Hater will disrespect your new home, tell you it is too small, that the neighborhood sucks, that they wouldn’t be caught dead over there, but they never miss a cookout and is the last one to leave.  The Hater looks at your watch and say “its a’ight”, then pop up 3 weeks later with a fake TAG Heuer and act like it the most expensive thing in the room.  Don’t get upset and challenge the Hater, you might beat the brakes off the Hater all the Hater will do is get up, wipe the blood from their lips and tell you his little brother and sister hit him harder than that when they were kids.

Let your Hater be your motivation, matter of fact any time you have spent too much time with your Hater go home and put on “Motivation” by Kelly Rowland.  Zone out for a few minutes and let your success show itself to you.

The saying ‘behind every successful man is a great woman’ is only partly true.  It should actually be gender neutral and more to the point “Behind every successful person, is a Hater… still hating on them”.  Keep doing you, you are fine and close to reaching your goals.  We need our Haters, so today let’s celebrate the Hater in our communities.  Call your Hater today and thank them for everything they haven’t done for you.  The only thing The Hater has ever done and will ever do is give birth to some hating ass kids. But if you do not know who The Hater is in your life… Hi Hater!

Happy Black History Month!! Today We Salute… The Thug ‘As A Fashion Statement’

As important as the ‘Jheri Curl’ or the ‘Zipper’ jacket Michael Jackson wore in the “Beat It” video.  Bigger than an Andre 3000 bow tie or Throw-back jersey with some S. Carter Reeboks and dookie gold rope chains, the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ has lasted longer than the careers and lives of rappers. 20 years ago rappers started dressing like they were going to rob their fans.  NWA came on the scene and even though they looked tough, nobody could remember seeing their local gang member walking down the street in a black Raiders hat with matching $200 Starters jacket.  That changed after an arrest and eventual release from jail of Tupac Shakur.  Tupac emerged from a precinct after making bail, spitting on camera men and cussing… acting like a real G!  From that point on, people wanted to dress like they were ‘real’.

In 1994, a group out of Cleveland, Ohio emerged and changed not only the sound of rap for a brief period, but changed fashion… for a really long time.  When people became fascinated by the sound from the song “Thuggish Ruggish Bone”, they ached to see who these guys were.  When the video “Foe the Love of Money” appeared on BET (where else), people finally saw what a ‘thug’ wore.  Looking like they were in the same clothes they rode the Greyhound bus to Los Angeles wearing, young men began to dress like they couldn’t afford anything else, on purpose.  Bones Thugs and Harmony not only made Eazy E relevant again; they put iron and ironing board manufacturers out of business.  They also saved a lot of money on the wardrobe budget… MO WEED MO WEED MO WEED!

Schools across the country had to issue uniforms to offset a student body looking as if they would shoot you for getting a Master’s in Education.  This did not stop the thug ‘as a fashion’ statement, the thug ‘as a fashion statement’ is intelligent in his ignorance; “you want me to wear a uniform?  I won’t put on the belt”.  The thug ‘as a fashion’ statement never grew out of (or into) their choice of clothes.  They became 35-year-olds with a closet full of oversized jeans, 40 pairs of Nikes but not a pair of slacks or dress shoes for a job interview.  The thug ‘as a fashion statement’ helped society in one major way… it let companies know who not to hire.  The unemployment rate has been tied to trends in the economy, bad decisions by the Federal government, even the greed of Wall Street.  High unemployment rates can also be tied directly to a large number of people in the ‘hiring pool’ that don’t own a tie and think their whitest T-shirt is appropriate interview attire.

The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ has a hard time making connections.  He questions why the police are always stopping him when walking down the street.  He fails to make the connection that REAL thugs only wear hooded sweatshirts, in 90 degree heat, when they have something to hide… like when they are trying to hide their gun or their face, after they have used their gun.  Police are trained to stop people who look like they are hiding a gun, they learned this in class they took while in the police academy called “Characteristics of Individuals Carrying Guns” which has been retitled “What Thugs Wear”.  Those characteristics happen to be the style of choice for the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’, oversized clothes to hide the bulk of a weapon, pants sagging from the bulk of a weapon, walking slow as if the they are being slowed down from the weight from the bulk of a weapon.  The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’, thinks that looks cool… because the thug ‘as a fashion statement’ is stupid.

Real thugs have learned that when a cop stops you, talk to him.  If you act like you have nothing to hide and not give a police officer a reason to arrest you, the cop probably won’t arrest you… cops do not like writing ‘arrest reports’.  The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ always runs and he is always caught.  Because he is not wearing a belt, so his pants fall to his ankles, causing him to trip and fall, allowing the fat cop to slowly walk over to him and place him in handcuffs.

Real thugs dress like this out of necessity or lack of money to afford better.  The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ can actually afford to buy proper and better fitting clothing.  Instead they shop at “Thugs Iz Us” and pay 200 percent more for a style a real thug gets from the Dickies section at Wal-Mart or from his older brother after he grows out of it.

The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’, believes that the world is against them and that everybody hates them because they are constantly being jumped and attacked by large groups of teenagers.  When in reality, the thug ‘as a fashion statement’ fails to realize that real thugs beat up anyone in a ‘thug uniform’ they do not recognize.  It is a defense mechanism for real thugs; they have come to learn that people they do not recognize that look like they are carrying guns are probably carrying guns.

What is most upsetting to grown men, that act like grown men and dress like grown men, about the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ is not the embarrassment they feel when they see men from their community looking ignorant.  Not even the initial fear that comes across them when they see the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ until they realize they are not real thugs.  What is most upsetting to grown men, that act like grown men and dress like grown men, is that at least 3 times a week because the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ is not wearing a belt they look at another man’s ass to realize they have on the same pair of draws!

Because you are not going anywhere, reluctantly we honor you the Thug ‘as a fashion statement’.  Even though the rappers that influenced your style opted for $3,000 suits as soon as they could afford them (have you seen T.I. in a crooked hat and sagging jeans since his third album?  Nope), even though we tried our best to forget about you for some reason you held on until we had to embrace you.  Kind of like Betty White, you out lived everyone in your generation until we had no choice but to give you a Life Time Achievement Award… The Thug ‘as a fashion statement’ the “Betty White” of Black History Month.  Please accept this award, this job application, and this belt.  You can either put it on and wear it at an appropriate level or we can whup your ass with it, the choice is yours.