Nov 20, 2009

no homo.

"Forreal, no homo, but I love all you," W says over the school intercom.

"What do you mean, 'no homo', W?" I ask, not over the school intercom.

I know exactly what he means, because yes, I too, listen to all those big corporate paint-by-numbers we call musicians, our national I'm-not-a-role-model role models. I ask him because I want to be Socratic and teacherly, and I want him to use his brain instead of the one that Lil' Wayne made for him.

We all know that teaching something as abstract as math is a hard sell on its own, but how about teaching why everyone who speaks for you on a national level is also a corporatized-as-fuck, spit-bullshit-not-truth, common-on-a-Coke-Ad suckface? That the language in use is that of perpetuation, power over powerless?

Let me be the first to say that I get bored when I listen to political or conscious rap... but more than that, in the system we've got, its much more insidious than boredom. Record contracts with Warner Bros, but fuck the system, right? It's reductive, I know, but the simple honesty behind it is unavoidable. And it makes for tired music, tired messages, and cheap lyricism.

W, become a rapper. Read Catcher in the Rye, as I see you doing right before me, and laugh to yourself about things that remind you of your own life. Read everything. Listen to everything. Do your own thing, and fuck up the whole game. We are waiting for you, young genius, to bring us so much more.


Eyawn said...

I hear this all the time. How do you suggest we combat it? Aside from the regular "yo, watch your language" or occassionnal "talk," how do we set up a movement within our classroom walls and our student's lives that counters our predominant culture?

Eyawn said...

Also, just in case no one's shared yet: your writing's powerful.

breana said...

hi this is breannabeasley at craig middle school