Mumia Abu-Jamal's Radio Broadcasts
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1) 2:31 Kanye's Comments (long) Mp3
2) 1:37 Kanye's Comments (short) Mp3
[col. writ. 11/17/10] (c) '10 Mumia Abu-Jamal
The rapper, Kanye West, one of the most brilliant musical artists of his generation, was recently pressured to give penance for his penchant to speak his mind's truth, whether it was to criticize the music award to country's Taylor Swift, or to announce, on live TV, that George W. Bush didn't "care about Black people."
During W's recent whitewash-memory tour, when the former president glanced at 8 years of disaster, he found one moment that troubled and 'hurt' him; when Kanye famously mentioned Bush's lack of care for the mostly Black sufferers of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.
Bush protested that West had called him a racist, which the media parlayed into an apology from West: really quite remarkable, especially given the fact that he didn't call him one. He said the man didn't care about Black people; and in light of the massive loss of lives and property and immense suffering faced by the multitudes of Black folks, and inability, unwillingness or incompetence of the federal government to intervene, to assist, fee, house of provide a cup of water to them, Kanye's comments sound surprisingly mild.
Kanye, rather remarkably, compared this event to his tete-a-tete with country singer, Taylor Swift, and while it's true he stole her moment, it's also true that his opinion, that Beyonce's song and video were far more fitting for the award, was neither ignorant nor wrong.
But the music biz ain't a community -- it's an industry, fueled by rumor, gossip and coke.
Kanye was left hanging -- and felt he had to leave the country to get some love.
Indeed, even Kanye equated his embarrassment of Taylor with the Bush administration's betrayal of thousands of American 'citizens' during Katrina, an equation that is itself profoundly racist in its assignment of heightened value to one woman who was white, wealthy and famous, and devaluation of thousands of poor, and working class Black lives.
Indeed, Kanye could've easily said the mayor, governor and president didn't care about Black people -- and it would've been equally true.
--(c) '10 maj
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