After watching the utterly nonsensical coverage following the Pennsylvania Primary and surrounding the recent reemergence of Reverend Jeremiah Wright, I'm starting to gain a new found respect for all those individuals who refuse to involve themselves in the political process at all. I'm as serious as a "dutch oven" executed by Mo'nique. To some people, passionately getting behind a candidate is akin to giving your heart to someone after years of being on the business end of one painful break-up after another - why get all jazzed up over a presidential nominee, only to get your heart ripped out of your chest when they come a few electoral votes short of Pennsylvania avenue? But sometimes, like the lonely throat-chop giving writer who went out and got himself a girlfriend because he talked about his penis entirely too much on his blog and masturbated like his genitalia had an expiration date on it, sometimes you just have to throw caution to the wind and openly support a candidate that you truly believe in.(See Barack Obama) But after witnessing the media coverage of Obama lately, I'm starting to understand why some people just don't fuck with politics at all. I mean, only a black man running for president would find himself responsible for everything an associate ever said - if Obama doesn't capture the nomination, I feel that our next hope for a black president will have to be someone groomed for the highest office in the land since birth. Like the attempted arranged marriage in "Coming to America", how else could we keep him away from shady slumlords in which he participated in no wrong-doing - or radicals who committed reprehensible things when he was a toddler?
Also, have you ever noticed that every Obama "scandal" that some pundit allows to escape their inept mandible always seems to be prefaced with some sort of clumsy contradictory statement? Like, "I know Obama loves this country and is patriotic, but... what's up with his refusal to wear a flag pin?" or "I'm absolutely positive that Barack Obama doesn't have a hateful bone in his body, but.. what's the deal with his preacher?" or "I fully understand what Barack Obama was saying when he said that people vote on wedge issues when they lose faith in their government, but.. that "bitter" comment.." What kind of media, Jedi mind-fuck is that exactly? Pure idiocy I tell you, apparently the mainstream media is as scared as Rupert Murdoch when it comes to prospect of having a black president.
But the one Obama criticism that really pissed me off was the whole "elitist" meme originally pushed by John McCain and Hillary Clinton - one candidate who has 8 houses and is married to a beer heiress worth 100 million dollars and another candidate who, with her husband, made 109 Million dollars over the past 7 years. On the surface the charge is ridiculous, a black man raised by a struggling single mother who often fed her son via foodstamps, who later passed up numerous opportunities to practice law at prestigious corporate firms to be a community organizer and a civil rights lawyer. But on a deeper level, the charge of "elitism" thrown at Obama acts as a racial dog-whistle as well - as my Vibe.com colleague Mark Anthony Neal succinctly states in a blog post entitled "Obama Elitist? I'm Hearing Something Else", what John McCain and Hillary Clinton are really telling voters is "this nigger thinks he's better than you!"
But as a person who wears my Hip Hop elitism like a fucking badge of honor, I didn't particularly appreciate the way the media wrongly characterized Obama as looking down on the common man - its a proverbial slap in the face to all of us who actually think that we are better than everyone else, solely on our Hip Hop tastes that is. Obama fields asinine questions about flag pins with infinite patience, but when someone waxes poetic about the lyrical prowess of Lil Wayne - my responses range from me vomiting inside my own mouth a little bit, open-palm mushing the person in question, or slashing my wrists with an imaginary knife as I fictitiously convulse and bleed out all over the place. When Tim Russert clumsily tried to hit Obama with the "gotcha" question in the form of "Louis Farrakhan", he very calmly claimed that he both rejected and denounced his support - I too had to publicly make my disapproval of someone public, by getting a free ticket to their concert, getting back stage as if I was going to interview the sub-par wordsmith for my Vibe blog, then dissing the fuck out of him by turning my back on him while posing in the illest B-Boy stance and as he extended his hand to greet me. Yes, I'm an asshole, an insufferable prick who makes utterly hate-able lists in his spare time consisting of what IS and Isn't Hip Hop. Barack Obama an Elitist? The junior Senator from Illinois doesn't have shit on me.
For example, sometimes I'll find myself in some random nightclub, and if the music being played suddenly gives me the sneaking suspicion that its going to be the soundtrack to my random stabbing - it isn't Hip Hop. If some monosyllabic rapper thinks that "swagger" has as much importance as having actual lyrical skill or moving a crowd, they aren't Hip Hop to me. Its my firm belief that if T-Pain guest stars on one of your songs, there is a 93.5 percent chance that you are not Hip Hop, its a scientific fact.(Ok, not really). For a long time I've contended, if an artist post 1991 comes out with a song instructing the listener to perform some sort of ridiculous dance routine - chances are, those motherfuckers aren't Hip Hop either. I once physically accosted a wedding DJ for playing a Jim Jones record, I've broken up with women in the midst of relatively healthy relationships simply because of their piss poor musical choices - during my friends funeral, as the preacher talked about my friend's love for Hip Hop he butchered the name of one of his main influences. So I corrected him be saying, "Its Big Daddy Kane fuckstick, get it right!" - to the dismay of hundreds of both shocked and severely pissed off mourners. The other night, when I picked my girlfriend up to go out to have dinner she was wearing a G-Unit t-shirt, I immediately made her change her clothes, questioned her for the next hour wondering if that was her way of passive aggressively breaking up with me, and made her recite the first verse of "Microphone Fiend". I don't let people forget about misguided album purchases or musical predictions, 17 years later I still occasionally call my friend Ron and say "Vanilla Ice, really??" - or very sarcastically say, "I'm loving that new Tracy Lee CD!! That's right, he doesn't have one.."
Obama has a long way to go when it comes to being an elitist.