Saturday, January 15, 2011

Hijacking MLK Day

I often cringe when I see businesses hijacking noble commemorations for commercial purposes. The historical achievements of George Washington and the lofty ideals of Abraham Lincoln are now marked only by "Presidents' Day Sales." Likewise, instead of remembering the fallen on Memorial Day or reflecting on the sacrifices of veterans on Veterans Day, most Americans observe those holidays by kicking off summer or by (once again) shopping Memorial Day Sales or Veterans Day Sales. (Veterans Day Sales? Really?)

So far, at least, the stores have not appropriated Martin Luther King Day for special sales promotions. But here in St. Louis, this day has been hijacked by something even worse. A local promoter has booked the "State of Emergency" tour for Monday, Martin Luther King Day. The concert features rappers Rick Ross, Wacka Flocka, Trina, and others. Ross is known for glorifying drug dealers. The lyrics of Wacka Flocka's "Oh, Let's Do It" glorify drugs, glocks, and money. (It's not known if Wacka will be able to make it, since he recently was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana, firearms--he’s a convicted felon--, hydrocodone, and violation of probation and the state’s “Criminal Street Gang and Terror Prevention Act.”) Trina, in the words of the promoter, "has continued to push the envelope of rap, with often-offensive, sexually explicit lyrics." The promoter claims that he is furthering the work of Dr. King, because in the time between sets, he and others will preach a message of non-violence. Uh-huh.

Dr. King is probably turning in his grave, or, more likely, wiping a tear from his eye.


Beauty said...

those rappers are pretty hardcore. trina is EXTREMELY sexually explicit and they ALL have a huge violence issue both lyrically and in their personal lives. MLK would ROLL OVER IN HIS GRAVE if he knew that THOSE were the black "role models" for the people he was trying to lift up and pretty much the ONLY part of African American culture that everyone else is readily exposed to. I mean BET is a prime example of exactly what Im talking about. How much of their programming is oriented to BETTERING or HELPING their community Or BETTERING THEMSELVES AS INDIVIDUALS? Oh wait...NONE!