Archive for June, 2013

Trayvon Martin: A Minstrel Mistrial?

Posted in News on June 28, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

trayvon mis

An expert witness is described as a witness, who by virtue of education, training, skill, or experience, is believed to have expertise and specialized knowledge in a particular subject beyond that of the average person. This definition, when analyzing the early testimony of Rachel Jeantel in the Trayvon Martin murder trial, pretty much puts her linguistic critique in its proper perspective. I, myself, was one of several different witnesses in a hate related crime quite a few years ago. I, along with my brother who was also a witness to the same crime, were informed by the District Attorney at the time that he was greatly anticipating both of our testimonies. He said this, with a wry smile on his face as he would go on to inform us as to why he was so elated. We would then learn that the reason behind his smug demeanor was due to the fact that the defendant’s lawyer had been painting both us to the jury as derelicts and thugs. In fact he had grouped us together like a menacing tag team in the WWE; he referred to us as “The Booker Boys”. I am more than sure if he could have added a subtitle to our names it would have been “The Brothers of Destruction” (real kick-asterisk right?). Needless to say, his preconceived thoughts or stereotypical profiling was the type of high-stake, risk taking that you only pack inside your bag on your way to Vegas. This gamble by the defense attorney in assuming that “The Booker Boys” were the same type of African American witnesses he had cross examined prior to us; who had less than stellar reputations, who were less articulate, who were not the so called “ideal” citizen(s) of the community, would be the status quo for us all. This would prove to be a costly assumption for the defense attorney, as his deliberate ploy in believing that what he had painted us as, would be ultimately what the jury would perceive us as. I am more than sure that upon meeting me the first time, I can be a bit polarizing in appearance. Have I had doors locked, pocketbooks clutched and gotten stares like I’m from District 9? Absolutely. Has this perception changed when I open my mouth to articulate words or flash a friendly smile?(brush twice a day) Yes it does. The point in all of this is that perception can be deceptive and to assume does not condition what others will presume (our testimonies resulted in a victory for DA). The same can be said about Rachel Jeantel. As I stated in the aforementioned, an expert witness is a specialized professional with expertise/higher education in a particular field of study. Rachel is a 19 year old young lady who has cameras shoved in her face for the first time. She has heaviness in her heart and just so happens to be a key witness in one of the most publicized trials to date. To hear people questioning her articulation of words and her physical demeanor is preposterous. Pressure does two things: bust pipes or form diamonds. The easiest thing to do is judge from afar, speculate and subscribe to the notion that ” if it was me I would….” or “if my child was up there doing what she was doing I would…”. Really? So now everyone can be an expert and be extremely eloquent? The problem with that premise is that even professional witnesses such as cops foul up (Mark Furhman anyone?) and can come across as inconsistent or fallible. Does this mean we question their education? No. The mocking or mimicking of Rachel Jeantel is as if she was masking as Rhodes Scholar only to be unmasked as a High School graduate posing as one. Her education is not on trial, it’s her believability that is. Her affect on the jury is unbeknownst to us all. This judgment /ridicule is only worth a blood nickel in the court of public opinion, as it has no baring in the court of law. What it does show is how we are quick to judge and love to watch people fail and fall. I’m ashamed and appalled by this heartless behavior and know that we, as humans, have some reevaluating to do. This is not for our entertainment, it’s a murder trial. The judgment/critiques should be reserved for American Idol. Right now people’s lives and reputations are at stake, as we await some form of justice to be levied. The sadness comes in knowing a young man lost his life and another stands to lose his right to a life and all we do is search for humor. Where has the humanity gone?

Linguistics, pronunciation and articulation; all sound words for a blogger or writer to use, but not words we choose to use casually or on a daily basis when talking with our friends. Teenagers use Internet shorthand, play obnoxious music and are still trying to find their voice/meaning in life. We tend to find our voice post high school graduation and it can sometimes be a struggle along the way. We don’t start perfecting life until it is almost too late to enjoy it. If we were nineteen and was having a microscope beamed into our lives, how would we react? What would we look like or be viewed as? I was less polished and had a chip on my shoulder that a bag of Pringles couldn’t hold. Before we all judge, remove all the glass from our own houses, as we are all but a rock throw away from having our own reputations shattered into a million little pieces. Judge not, as ye may be. #Empathy

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N.F.L.=New Felony League

Posted in News on June 27, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

nfl

It was Tony Montana who boldly stated the following line in the movie Scarface: “You wanna waste my time? Okay. I call my lawyer. He’s the best lawyer in Miami. He’s such a good lawyer, that by tomorrow morning, you gonna be working in Alaska. So dress warm”. I found this line to be extremely appropriate when discussing the topic of the Aaron Hernandez’s arrest in the murder of Odin Lloyd. The case as been plastered all over the news so why regurgitate the story, that’s what the people over at ESPN specialize in doing at a nauseam. What I would like to talk about is the mentality of the privileged or the so called wealthy individuals that operate outside of the normal realm that the average American is priced out of. They say that you can tell the importance of an individuals value to others by the car you see parked in their driveway. It is ironic in this case as Aaron was said have been seen getting into a rented Nissan Altima on his way to execute Odin Lloyd. No offense to Nissan owners as I’m sure they are good cars, however, my concentration is on the mentality behind the thinking. In the wake of being investigated, Aaron decided to do what all privileged athletes do, he utilized his wealth and hired an attorney to act as a spin doctor to declare his innocence while discrediting any potential witnesses as well as the credibility of the police. Why you ask? Because he assumes that the American public is naive and gullible. Think about this. Aaron Hernandez used the average American to not only earn a healthy income, but he also used the image of an “average” American when borrowing a car in order to blend into normal society undetected. His ploy was to take out his trash and toss it onto his less fortunate neighbors yard and let them worry about the removal cost. Is this not the blueprint that we have seen in sports, whether its O.J Simpson, Pac-Man Jones or Kobe Bryant? They do the crime and others make it go away. Have they all not used the same Jedi-Mind Trick in the hopes that the weak minded and the impressionable people will believe a hoax and not the victim(s) of their heinous acts? I blame the New England Patriots to a certain degree as well. Hernandez’s history was well documented, yet a team who has had great success hired him when no one else would touch him, like a desperate franchise that could not get good players to join their teams. Did they pull the trigger? No. Did they know he was capable of pulling a trigger? Yes. You don’t leave a cocaine addict in a room full of snow, they will freeze their nasal passages and their brain trying to get high. White Lines: “Don’t Do It!”

Society admires and places athletes and entertainers on a pedestal like an idol of worship, but know very little about their history or background. Yes they can catch a ball or run like lightening, but what about their character? We need more Derek Jeter’s and Tim Duncan’s to be poster children for the respective leagues as their “off court” lives stay “out of the court”. So before buying a jersey or pledging allegiance to an idol, be careful, as you too may be shot in the back when they finally reveal exactly who they are.

Barack Obama: Just another Sith?

Posted in News on June 27, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

obama

Star Wars: Episode IV was subtitled as “A New Hope” as we saw the growing pains of a young Luke Skywalker searching for his identity and the answers to life. It would take two additional chapters of the book/movie before we would see the young Skywalker come into his own and fulfill his destiny in becoming a Jedi Knight and returning balance back to the force. At the end of that movie/chapter, many of us thirsty Star Wars geeks asked the poignant question, “We know how the book ended, but how did all of this begin?” What did Darth Vader look like before the mask? Was Yoda always that green? And where do Wookies hang when they are not running around with galactic smugglers playing freeze tag inside of carbon chambers? (courtesy of Jabba Corleone) The answers to these questions are just as important to me as the response I receive to “where are we eating?” The hunger, the crave, just like a White Castle treat we should never indulge in but still want, continued to coral my interest. Then “tadow!”, just like a magic trick from David Blaine, we learn that we will finally get our answers in the releases of Episode I-The Phantom Menace, Episode II-Attack of the Clones and Episode III-Revenge of the Sith. The elation could not be contained; that is until we learned that they were pretty much just a waste of film and lacked the transcending nature of Chapters 4, 5 and 6. But I did like the mesmerizing titles of the new movies: “The Phantom Menace” , Attack of The Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith”. So I decided to morph and tweak their titles a bit and add new lead character. I call it “Barack’s Drone: The New Phantom Sith”.

“The Attack of The Drones”, perhaps not a title that J.J Abrams will entertain as the name for one of the up and coming new installments of the Star Wars series, but I figured that we will make an imaginary film instead of wasting our budget on props, actors and big name directors. What we will do for this epic tale is, I will write and you can insert the stick figures on the story boards wherever you deem necessary. Let me first preference by saying that I’m not big on politics. When the word is broken down, the word “poly” means many and the word “tic(k)s”mean blood suckers. I, for one, prefer a more virtual bite from Dracula and offer up very little blood in a debate of a Republican, Democrat or Liberal triad, as I have yet to see any politician do anything for the sake of humanity. Perhaps this is why I pledge my membership to an “unseen” higher power as opposed to high powered politicians that are routinely “seen” that do nothing to benefit the average person(s). As I move forward in this thought, I see the recent discussion in the news regarding the utilization of surveillance drones under the Barack Obama administration. The drone programs according to U.S. officials are designed to target militants outside the United States who are suspected of planning attacks, but they are said to also some data on certain Americans as well. We have learned that the F.B.I has utilized drones when Jimmy Lee Dykes abducted a young schoolboy in Alabama and held him hostage underground. The U.S has also used drones to protect the United States-Mexican border. I’m sure that in this capacity the drones could be thought of as a weapon of good purpose. We see a young boy trying to be saved by one and we see the eye in the sky helping to deter the influx of drugs and illegal immigrants. So in this case, the drones are our friends (Sarah Conner, lower your weapon, they come in peace). But when does “peace” turn into “grave danger”? The drone deployment we can conclude is for a good purpose indeed, however, the “grave danger” comes in whether it violates our rights to privacy. The fact that the F.B.I has yet to disclose information regarding the drone’s limitations, as well as, they have failed to assure the American public that their constitutional rights are not being violated, has caused many citizens to feel a certain imbalance regarding their civil liberties. There’s an imbalance/disturbance in the “force” that has the republic/people a bit uneasy. Is this the work of Barack Sidious? On this round, yes. But as you recall, Barack’s Drone: The New Phantom Menace is a new film I’m directing, but what about the prequel. If this a “new phantom menace” then there had to have been an old phantom menace; right? Yoda: “Patience you must have my young padawan”

As Episode I’s plot is revealed we learn that Siths come in twos, a Master and an Apprentice (Palpatine/Darth Maul). We can attach this same premise to the drone issues we are facing now. American citizens are up in arms about their privacy which they have every right in feeling that way. We pride ourselves on being both free and constitutional. It is our mantra; it is the “American Way”. But I’m going to challenge the so called “American Way”. We are challenging the visible eye in the sky in terms of our privacy, yet we have willingly given out private information long before a hovering drone. We have alway been attached to our social security numbers since birth. It has monitored our lifetime labor history and has been attached to any major purchases during that lifetime, whether its a mortgage for a house or a loan for a car. The government has alway been thoroughly aware as you will always pay taxes or file tax returns as it relates to those items. I know, that’s an easy one, everyone knows this right. It’s the American Way; this is what we do. Gotcha. Well we then move into setting up your first bank account so that FDIC can secure your funds from being stolen from under your mattress and the added bonus is that you can use our Federal Reserve Banking System to issue secure notes of paper that have what we call Routing Numbers on them so we can monitor and trace the transaction and assure both parties that the money is good. Not impressed yet? Ok, maybe my examples seem more petty then privacy violations. Maybe I’m too Old America as these examples don’t hit home enough yet. I’m going to have to go Gene Hackman (Brill) on this one (see Enemy of the State) and talk about convenience and fear becoming the greatest invitation for inviting institutions into our private life. I want you to examine your daily activity and you will find that you have been under drone surveillance far more than you are aware of. If you have used a cellular device during your daily routine, you have just activated a homing device that will show your location via the pings on the tower that you used to gain a signal from . If you have used your debit/credit card for misc purchases throughout your day (as we no longer carry money for fear of being robbed or not wanting to go to our bank for a withdrawal -fear/convenience) then they will know what you bought and where you bought it from. If you were perhaps lost and required a GPS device to find your way, you are now being tracked via satellite and they know where you are and where you are going. Have you accessed your wireless provider to get on the Internet or Facebook? Routers are connected to servers, they know when you are on the Internet, where you surf and how long you were on (no Norton Anti-Virus for that). And my favorite tool is our home security systems. There’s a code entered when you leave to signify that you are no longer home and a code entered to secure yourself inside when you are home. I almost forgot EZ Pass/tolls. You want to leave the state? Well just let us know when you are going to do that; oh and ill need some money when you decide to do so. Smile for the camera and say “cheese big brother!” Now that’s a Kodak moment.

So is Barack a Sith that wields a light saber while shooting bolts of lighting from his fingertips? Of course not. However, he is an apprentice of our government which has been a Sith Lord forever. We can fight against the enemy we know, but what about the hidden enemy or the “Phantom Menace”. Fear and convenience, along with us becoming more of a digital era, will result in less privacy and more monitoring. The drones are just a new way to an old tradition that dates back as far as the U.S. One Dollar Bill. On the back, there is a pyramid with the Eye of Providence lurking above it. The Eye of Providence means “all seeing”. You have alway been watched.

The Good The Bad The Tar Baby

Posted in News on June 25, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

tar

The term “tar baby” has been defined in its modern interpretation as a “sticky situation”. The term was derived from a fictional character called Tar Baby that was featured in a collection of African American folktales entitled Uncle Remus stories as compiled by Joel Chandler Harris in 1881. Tar Baby was said to have been a doll made of tar and turpentine that was used to entrap another fictional character named Br’er Rabbit in the previous mentioned Uncle Remus stories. Tar Baby, also has become known as a racal slur towards African Americans, as it is used to describe the darker complexioned African American, suggesting that their skin color resembles that of tar as opposed to those who are viewed as brown or lighter skinned in appearance. Some of those that are outside of the African American culture may not realize the categorical depiction of our color spectrum, as I am more than sure that in the case of many non-blacks, we are seen universally as black no matter what different hues of skin or eyes that we have on display. In fact I will “go there” in saying that this categorical depiction or skin classing system is an internal issue for African Americans as a culture. In my opinion, this has been just as divisive as segregation and just as poisonous/genocidal as heroin was for our communities in the 1970’s. James Brown pontificated “say it loud, I’m black and I’m proud!” But my question is, are we really?

When a self portrait is viewed as less than human, we can no longer blame the artist nor the brush. We are venturing into an abyss of degradation that perhaps the late Jacques Cousteau would find way too challenging to explore. I self reflect before I reflect, so I am starting with me first. I recently watched the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) as there was an interesting and enlightening documentary called “Dark Girls”. The documentary focused in on the darker skinned African American women in our country and their self analysis of their beauty. I, for one, had in my mind that this would be a documentary celebrating and ingratiating the beauty of my darker sisters. It proves how naive I have become at the age of 40 as my view on life has become that of which I’m empowered by and what I embrace. My belief and my confidence are always on full display as I developed what was termed as “rhino skin” when it comes to what others think or view me as. In fact I will go as far as to say that I got “God Swagger” (you better ask somebody). I grew up as a child only knowing a darker skinned woman, who was both powerful and beautiful in my mother. So when Oprah puts on a show called Dark Girls, my first inclination is to think that I can watch beautiful women and tell my wife that Oprah made me do it (men follow my lead and you may stay off the couch for once). But as I started watching the show, what I believed to be a documentary on beauty, quickly became a documentary of bereavement, as I realized that the saddest dying element of the African American woman was their self esteem regarding their beauty and self worth. Some of the women spoke of how they have tried to rub their skin away as children believing it was dirt instead of flesh. Many claimed to have been teased and ridiculed about their complexion and were called gorillas at one point. One would think that individuals who are non blacks would be the ones causing such terror and pain, however, the troubling/disturbing irony in all of this is the fact that the ridicule has come from other African Americans. I will go deeper in saying that there were more testimonial accounts of the acceptance/appreciation of the darker flesh by white males more so then black men. Some black men went as far as to say that darker women are unattractive and that they prefer to be with lighter skinned women instead. This ignorant betrayal of our dark woman by the generations of fruits that spawned from her rooted existence in Africa is far beyond an identity crisis. It shows a genuine disconnect from our culture, bloodline and heritage. To have a disdain for your blood lineage is the same as depriving your body of water and oxygen. We can blame the dynamic of the field slave versus the house slave and say that this division was the cause of this. But if slavery is 400 years plus removed and we are far more educated and aware; then why does this self hate of our image still exist? I often ponder the question of people like Michael Jackson who decided to erase everything noticeably Afrocentric about him from his pallet with the acceptance of his rhythm. What disturbs me even more so is that his family instead of revolting, decided to go under the knife to look just like him so that he would look less odd (see any Jackson family photo prior to recent ones and see their noticeable transition). What is wrong with dark skin? Why does the African American athlete seemingly make a calculated decision to generally have coffee with more cream in their cup and less dark roast? Why are only 26% of black women married versus 51% of white women? Is their a level of disdain that reaches far beyond comprehension? I guess blame can be laid on a lack education and an influx of incarceration. Yet we still see black men who are both educated and not in jail still choose the fruit less ripened. Perhaps the poison is far too deep for extraction and our identity is completely lost. A very sad and disturbing epiphany for me; how about ?

Please know that ones choice of cohabitation, whether blue, white, yellow or black is all about preference. I have dated within and outside of my race so I have zero tolerance prejudice of any culture, especially that of my own. I identify with who I am first and embrace that and stay rooted in my origin. It is in that rooted origin that I am able to embrace other cultures and their race. To judge anything based on something as shallow as hue of flesh is far beyond the realm of ignorance. When that shallow judgment is aimed towards your own flesh hue, it is no longer life; it is your own death. #lost ones

Flight 800: Truth or Dare We Ask?

Posted in News on June 24, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

trans 800

In the movie Conspiracy Theory, Jerry Fletcher (Mel Gibson) stated “A good conspiracy is unprovable. I mean, if you can prove it, it means they screwed up somewhere along the line.”
We have seen the proverbial “Smoking Man” (for all you X-File fans) pop up throughout the history of the United States. We’ve had the Roswell alien conspiracy; the Abraham Lincoln conspiracy that speculates a kidnapping (not an assassination) was the original plot to be carried out. We saw the Kennedy “Single Bullet Theory” brilliantly portrayed in the movie JFK by Kevin Costner in his role as Jim Garrison. We have J Edgar Hoover’s COINTELPRO initiative as the head of the FBI, that some believe that its sole purpose was to expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit and neutralize leaders of movements that were deemed subversive, like Martin Luther King Jr. Directors like Michael Moore and Oliver Stone have made a virtual career out of “pulling the wool” from off of our eyes to show that it is a man lurking behind the curtain instead of a magical wizard. These and many other theories have been floated throughout time. Some believe in them, while others debunk them. But what is truth? Truth is defined as: “the body of real things, events and facts”. So in layman’s term, truth simply means it happened and we know about. The trickery, is in the interpretation of truth; the “how” and “why” it happened. This, along with your pre-conceived conscious prior to events of any magnitude, dictates what premise you prescribe to. I for one, remain extremely open minded when receiving information as I like to visit all angles before attaching my personal logic/theory to anything. Others appreciate receiving their information from highly regarded fact relaying institutions such as the press, news networks, government and now social media. I often refer to each method in the context of how one goes about preparing for a test. We have those who want to study in great depth, while others prefer to cram last minute. Both methods work and can result in a passing grade; however, what have we learned in the process of our obtaining of the said information? Can we both be right? Is there such a thing as two truths? I was taught that there are three sides to a story: your side, my side and the truth. As we look back on TWA Flight 800, what really happened? Truth or Dare time. I will let you choose.

If I was to say that the military, in an unprecedented act, did something unusual or out of their normal realm, what would you think? Would you believe that the circumstances at hand required a different protocol? What would change protocol? I, myself, don’t normally endorse a violent method over a peaceful method, however, if someone was to break into my house and started threatening harm to my family, I’m more than sure that peace would be placed on hold, as the situation at hand required a more drastic approach versus the normal status quo. Things usually change when situations change. After the crash of TWA Flight 800, the US Navy, in what was deemed as an “unprecedented act”, declared a five mile no fly zone during the wreckage removal. Obviously there have been other plane crashes involving US commercial airliners and “if” this knowledge is accurate, then one could easily speculate a certain “gray area” is involved that can cause a curious mind to wonder, “why” do this now? What changed or became different that required such a new methodology to be utilized? When there are no holes in the ground then there are less places to throw dirt. Same thing applies to action. If you explain up front why you committed an act, then the likelihood of individuals concluding beyond your explanation will lessen. We are all aware that the military and government will act in the best interest of our country, which sometimes require us to not be in the know. But if we are saying that this plane had mechanical issues, then there is nothing to hide. You only hide to protect those things you don’t want visible in the light. Theories then gain steam when enhanced, such was the case with Linda Kabot’s photo taken from the deck of Dockers bar/restaurant of Westhampton Beach, NY that clearly showed what appeared to be a cylinder, missile like object hovering in the sky seconds before what many described as a streak of fire heading towards the plane before it exploded. If we can honor the fact that terrorist attacked the Twin Towers, then why can’t we honor a possible terrorist missile killing passengers? That is of course unless it was a domestic error instead of a foreign attack. We have the counter-argument to the conspiracy theory that perhaps it was a mechanical error. The National Transportation Board was said that they never discovered a residue that would have them conclude that a missile or explosive device caused the plane’s destruction. They concentrated their theories around the central fuel tank claiming that static electricity caused the explosion to occur. The F.B.I, on the other hand, believed that it was a possible bomb that may have been planted near the fuel tank and was detonated once the plane ascended. Boeing Company, who designed the 747 model for TWA, denounced the National Transportation Board’s theory,saying that in no way could an electric charge have ignited the fuel tank. So what caused 230 innocent individuals to lose their lives? Do the conspiracy theorist have it right or do the fact relaying institutions have it right? Who do you believe?

Truth, or Dare we ask? Who shall we believe or trust in? What I do know is that I trust in righteousness and justice. The open wounds of life are stitched and stapled to prevent infection, but rarely do they ever completely heal. Seek and you shall find that what we know is not much. All of the information provided today is less transparent and more than often misdirected by magical smoke and mirrors. I often say that if Jeffrey Dahmer wrote a cookbook, would you use it? Study the facts and study the messenger and there you will find, your truth.

In Review: Injustice-Gods Among Us

Posted in Technology, Gaming, Etc. on June 22, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

injustice

If you are a DC Comic fan, then this game will definitely peak your interest as you impatiently await the highly anticipated Justice League movie. It is easy to compare this game to Mortal Kombat (Finish Him!), however it’s all that and a bag of chips, Skittles, Slurpee, Milky Way and every other Convenient Store wallet zapper (apparently my hunger has taken over my writing). Needless to say, Injustice is a “gamer’s paradise” (sorry Coolio) that has everything from great graphics to an intriguing selection of heroes and villains with awesome combat moves. You can spend countless hours playing as your favorite DC Comic character. My only knock is that I wish one of the characters came with a “kryptonite kick” because Superman can be one tough Son Of Jor-El to beat. This game I will give 4 out of 5 Remote Controls to. It’s worth the money and if you don’t have the $59.99 to spend, do yourself a favor and check out Amazon for great deals on used versions of this game for your console. To all my gaming geeks: “Don’t Hate The Player, Just Beat The Game”

Jay-Z: A Devil’s Blue Print

Posted in News on June 21, 2013 by geniusscribbleink

jayz

“I sell ice in the winter, I sell fire in hell, I am a hustler baby, I’ll sell water to a well”. Those were lyrics from a Jay Z song called “U Don’t Know” off of his 2001 critically acclaimed album entitled: The Blue Print. When hearing about Jay-Z’s (a.k.a Shawn Carter) latest venture with Samsung regarding the release of his up and coming album: Magna Carta Holy Grail, to one million consumers of the new Galaxy mobile phone, I began to think to myself; what exactly won’t Jay-Z sell? This is not in any way an indictment to his business ventures and their success, because let’s face it; he has made it. I, much like many others, have Roca Wear Jeans, I’ve gone to the 40/40 Club, I play his songs loudly in my car and for the most part I have admiration for him being a person who went from rags to riches utilizing the “hustling” and “selling” mantra he proclaimed in the aforementioned lyrics. But the question still remains: what exactly won’t he sell? Let us look into his marketing history.

Jay-Z grew up in Marcy Houses; a project tenement in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. He was an understudy of several Hip Hop Legends that influenced his lyrical delivery and gave him a platform to display his talents. I don’t want to get too deep into a biographical depiction of his life because that is not what this article is about; we will save that for a VH-1 Behind the Music documentary. The legend of his “hustling” and “selling” is where I am concentrating my efforts. It has been made known publicly that Jay-Z went to extreme measures to get his song incorporated into a NYC radio station’s rotation, so much that he walked into their office with a duffel bag of money inquiring about how much would it take to get his song played on the airwaves. Some would say that it was a masterful ploy and a smart business move, however, I’m going to call it exactly what it is,”hustling”. Back then, Jay-Z was a street hustler who was selling illegal narcotics. His mentality back then was to sell his music, just like he sold his narcotics; aggressive with no apologies. Did he know any other way? Of course not. In life you know what you know until someone teaches/educates you on a better methodology. It’s the natural progression of life, as we are taught hard lessons by life, redefined by our teachings or education; how we live that life is determined by our morals or standards; this is the essence of life in itself. So let me fast forward my diatribe. He’s got albums, he’s got music videos, he’s gotten recognizable fame, he’s got the hottest chicks wearing his chain, etcetera, etcetera. He’s the owner of Roc-A-Fella Records, Rocawear Clothing, yes he is now “selling”. The street narcotics have now turned into clothing lines, protégé/musicians he has on his record label and he’s selling swagger to the streets as being the drug dealer who turned businessman who is now living the dream. Ok, let me stop for a minute. I want to paint the picture here: He sold drugs to his people while living amongst them. He built up enough money from his own people in order to afford him an opportunity to make a successful move towards his dream of being a rap artist. He becomes a rap artist, becomes a mogul/icon and turns around and resells his product back to the people he first exploited. Genius! If you didn’t get it, please read it again. So, he’s selling his “product” again except its legal now. He’s dating a top-notch star who is giving him exposure to the world, yet his music career is not quite up to snuff in my opinion and he delivers the news of the “Black” album being his last album, because he’s now going to retire from Hip Hop Music forever. Really? What you talking about Willis? Could it be? Yup, he’s “hustling” us again. He stayed retired about as long as it took me to write this blog. He was back on the scene, better than ever, just buy his new album he will tell you all about it himself (album was called Kingdom Come). So we move on, he’s done a soundtrack for the Denzel Washington movie American Gangster, he’s part owner of the NJ/NY Nets (which was a joke for anyone who knew his % stake in the team) and he’s heading towards matrimonial bliss. I think its safe to say that his music is drawing less attention than my blog is right now, as he is not as relevant musically as he once was. In fact his fiancée kind of made him become an afterthought as he became “the husband of” more so then the “rapper that was”. Enter in, his new friend, no not Kanye, he’s walking with Jesus and became Yezus (except he Jesus never wore tight pants). No we are talking about his new friend: Lucifer. If you don’t believe this, get familiar with the phrase “Do what thou wilt” and study the term Illuminati (read: The Illuminati 666). Jay-Z has been extremely transparent in associating himself with cult terminology and symbolism. Phrases such as “Do What Thou Wilt” and Illuminati Cult symbols can now be seen in his videos, clothing wear and jewelry designs. His album has references of proclaiming anti Christian rhetoric as we the case in the “Empire State of Mind” song, where he boldly stated that “Jesus can’t save you, life starts when the church ends”. He’s also be bold enough to recycle his name from Jay-Z to J-Hova, referencing the original theology that God’s true name is Jehovah. None of his references are cryptic; they are in the forefront of a viewers site. On his collaboration with Kanye on the “Watch The Throne” album, there’s a song entitled “No Church in the Wild” asking in the lyrics “Is pious, pious cause God loves pious” Pious according to Webster is something “marked by conspicuous religiosity” it’s also defined as “marked by shame or hypocrisy”. So according to these lyrics, God loves hypocrisy and conspicuous religion. Jay-Z unapologetically parades these anti-Christian values and sells them to the masses. Once again he’s “selling” us on ideologies of him now being some sort of deity who is right on the same level as the creator. Just check out the title of his new album: Magna Carta Holy Grail. The Holy Grail in biblical reference, refers to the chalice Christ drank from at the Last Supper. Many will call this hip hop, I call it blasphemy. Is this “hustling” or “selling”? And if so, at what cost?

If we are all free moral agents, I guess that would make us free consumers as well. I love hip hop music and the success individuals have garnered from it. It has opened up avenues for individuals that may not have been available had it not been invented and to that I am extremely thankful. We live in a time where you have to hustle your work and sell your worth. That’s great marketing in itself when you are able to make something out of nothing. Jay-Z is a true blue print or template that many can see as a prime example of what to do. But I will ask the question again; but at what cost? For Jay-Z, perhaps his own soul?