Which of these two perspectives, if any of them, is correct is something I really couldn't speculate to.
Anyway, here's the article:
Some random editorial wrote: WHITE CEOs do not chair meetings in gold chains, railing about ''honkies, bitches, and hoes." They love black men who wear gold chains and scream about ''niggers, bitches, and hoes." Our reminder of this comes from our own local Fortune 500 company, Reebok. The sneaker company, which posted $3.8 billion in sales last year and is in the process of being sold to Adidas-Salomon for $3.8 billion, announced that it will produce shows with hip-hop stars for on-demand cable.
Reebok says it will produce interviews with the likes of 50 Cent, Jay-Z, and Tony Yayo. Reebok will make them for Def on Demand, a black-run service backed by Russell Simmons. Reebok's director of advertising, Marc Fireman, said that the company ''is excited to partner with an entertainment channel so in tune with youth and hip-hop culture. Def on Demand's customizable entertainment is a great fit for Reebok's own spirit of individuality and authenticity."
Authenticity? Rosa Parks just died and Reebok pronounces that black authenticity is represented by 50 Cent, who records works that have him and his guest artists saying: ''There's a problem, I'm a solve it, a n---- movin' around with a big --- revolver . . . You ---- with me, you see, I'll react like an animal, I tear you apart. If the masterpiece was murder, I'd major in art."
Jay-Z is now a part-owner of pro basketball's New Jersey Nets, but if you are looking for him to rap about closing the achievement gap faced by black students, don't hold your breath because ''This is educated thug music, n-----."
Then there is Tony Yayo, who raps, ''I'm in that brand new Range: when I pull up, kid, I turn your brains into red concrete stains. That's the beauty of gruesome violence."
It is tragic enough that black rappers and hip-hop moguls prostitute themselves to the Fortune 500 with the very stereotypes about violence, stupidity, and sexual drive that white society used to justify slavery, colonization, segregation, and lynching. After slave rebellions, the Underground Railroad, patriotism in world wars, marches on Washington, and murders of civil rights workers, Jay-Z makes millions saying, ''I take and rape villages."
African-Americans can no longer afford to coddle these people. The black czars of gutter hip-hop are the new house slaves. And Reebok's promotion of this material, along with Comcast and other media giants, is just as reprehensible.
In his second-quarter 2005 conference call, Reebok CEO Paul Fireman said that Jay-Z has ''been a great assistance in connecting us to the right people culturally, connecting us, working with athletes . . . Jay-Z is an inspirational person in that community."
Moguls like Jay-Z may be wearing pinstripes these days and Russell Simmons may be urging youth of color to vote, but as long as their foundation is rotten, they are a corrosive force in black culture. If the civil rights establishment is looking for a new crusade, it needs to summon the guts to ignore the billions that flow through the hip-hop industry. At the close of 2004 all top-10 rap singles ranked by Billboard used the ''n" word in their uncensored versions.
At Reebok's annual investor conference, division officials echoed Fireman, saying, ''These kids hang on every word" of Jay-Z because ''his influence on youth culture is tremendous and what he represented 2.5 years ago he still represents today, but even more so, because he's evolved."
They said of 50 Cent, ''This guy is truly a marketing machine and will have a lot of momentum. We're going to really capture and provide that momentum and be with 50." They said, ''50 Cent is very large and his influence is incredible and he's really captured a major movement and people are following him and going with him."
If 50 Cent represents a major movement, we ought to spare ourselves the illusion of racial progress and bring back the Klan. Black rappers are wearing the chains of volunteer slavery. Paul Fireman has no need for a gold chain. He is using the money off the nightmare of black entertainers who are willing to portray ''animals" to build his dream. Last month Fortune magazine published a lengthy feature on Fireman building the world's most expensive golf course in New Jersey.
Derrick Z. Jackson's e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.