Lupe Fiaso, Kicks & Pushes

Of course people would argue that Lupe Fiasco’s tearful interview explaining the continual violence, gross disenfranchisement and hopelessness in his hometown of West Side Chicago should be the very reason why he should vote.

On the contrary, it has provided the impetus for him to be vocal about not voting and seeing it useless for the average person whose interests are never served.

Lupe’s perspective, in truth, is the reason why black and brown youth
are ever so turned off about the voting process 4 years since they
largely participated in the 2008 presidential elections.

Though they say
politics are local, the youth were reined into the national election,
thus staying mis-educated about the issues on the local level. There is a difference between casting a ballot and being politically active; however, most “activists” were not interested in that part of the equation. Mentoring youth, and their activists  to understand the importance of localized political engagement would only mess up Sharpton’s time at the salon to get his edges retouched.

As a
result, local politics remained the same—completely failing and
disregarding the same population that was mobilized to vote for them.

Nonetheless, this reality also pushes Lupe to be politically engaged in his music and beyond.

Lupe who  is currently providing, free, healthy food during Ramadan,
articulates the contradictions and ironies he sees in US policies and
social order. Lupe’s latest single, “Freedom Ain’t Free” provides
insight into the conundrum, corporate exploitation and chaos that the
average young person navigates in the midst of profiling, unemployment,
and streamlined resources to be a productive citizen.

I agree with Lupe when he states in his latest single, “America’s a big motherfuckin’ garbageman.” And as he says in the interview, this system has eaten and thrown away many of his peers. The brilliant and provocative emcee who also attended and supported
Occupy Wall Street pointed out in this interview that some of cats on
his block are either imprisoned or jail, haunting him today as harsh
testaments that black and brown Chicago communities and blighted and

The MTV interview showed a previous Lupe interview when he first came out six years prior. He was a hood kid who used skating as a way to balance his life. When he went to the other side of town, the place he called home, he described is displeasure with the high levels of disenfranchisement that his community endures.

The two frames are juxtaposed realities that the average inner city youth lives. On one hand, we are entrenched with visuals and realities of social-political-cultural implosion from Brooklyn to Oakland , but on the other hand, we live a parallel to an alternative life of the hipster movement, a commercialized, and fresh-faced Justin Bieber-esk campaign that borrows heavily from our culture, minus the poverty and prison records.

And that is how a lot of us youth live, even if we have made it, we must all go home. Even if we are second and third generation “middle and upper class” black people, we all have family members who are struggling. And while Lupe enjoys the lightness he feels in his career choice, his travels, and his evolution as a human, he wears the weight of his people on his shoulders.

Though Pete Rock is pissed that Lupe took his legendary beat that was used in “They Reminisce Over You (TROY),” a song that memorializes friend Trouble T, he is simply the pot calling the kettle black since he stole it from Tom Scott and the California’s Dreamer’s song “Today”.

Love the lyrics in Lupe’s shit. Rip it brother on both ends.

Profound line
Crucifixes, racism and the land grab/Katrina, Fema trailers, human body sand bags

Another dope line
Say that we should protest/Just to arrested/That goes against all my hustling ethics/A bunch jail niggas say its highly ineffective

Speaking truth line

Down at the Lakota Sioux casino/A whole culture boiled down to given you Pokeno