To commemorate civil rights leaders and legends, and recognize the newly released movie “Selma,” the OWN network, owned and operated by Tennessee State grad Oprah, is hosting a month-long celebration of the historic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.
In a recent episode of Oprah’s Master Class, Jay-Z shed some knowledge on how he feels about race relations regarding Hip-Hop and police brutality.
“I think that Hip-Hop has done more for racial relations than most cultural icons,” Jay-Z said. The rapper warned that he had “strong” views on how hip-hop has impacted racism, and to many, these were some interesting choice words since the rapper usually is not very vocal on political and racial issues.
Looking back at recent incidents of police brutality occurring in Ferguson, New York and Florida, and around the country I think that his opinion is honest and is, perhaps, somewhat accurate.
The recent deaths of Mike Brown and Eric Garner have caused many rappers in the hip-hop industry to use their voices for good for a change:
A collaborative song by The Game, Rick Ross and Diddy was released in early August to honor Mike Brown and to contribute to the victim’s memorial fund. J. Cole was seen at Eric Garner protests in New York and Missouri, and released a song called “Be Free” in memory of Eric Garner. Kendrick Lamar spoke on how his song, “I,” impacted the situations of Mike Brown and Eric Garner.
These artists have used their voices to make an impact, no doubt.
Like Jay-Z said, people listen to Hip-Hop music all around the world so even if you are not engaged the issues happening in the world, in particular happening here in America–thanks to Hip-Hop, you are now informed.
And perhaps, this is what Jay-Z meant by “doing more.”