White Musicians Who Make Loads of Money From Black Culture Have Nothing to Say About Ferguson?

Comments

1
Charles, any thoughts on the Lakeside / Ballmer / basketball story from yesterday?
2
Macklemore is too busy shopping for his next racist costume

anyway, these are (typically poorly educated) performers and celebrities. there are far more relevant people who have remained silent on Ferguson
3
Since when is it required for everyone to make a statement on everything? And how miserable would it be to have to hear/read every celebrity/pseudo-celebrity make statements all the time?
4
the only thing worse than not tweeting about ferguson would be tweeting stupidly about ferguson, for instance this locoernesto tweet.

why would anyone who's not 12 look to miley fucking cyrus for insight on race relations?

5
I'm not particularly interested in hearing the 140 character "insights" of complicated topics from people who are jet lagged traveling on tour. I don't really see what that adds to the conversation.
6
Dear lord, watching that Nickelbacklemore video is like watching some weird 80's aerobic video or a cheerleading contest you see on ESPN 2? And yes, I have watched both of previously said items of note like a car wreck laughing all the entire time...
7
is this the dumbest post in slog history?
8
What does he mean by "it's time to be black?"

How should they act -- differently -- because of their "blackness"?

How should whites act to exhibit their apparently-its-biological "whiteness?"

Such is the illogic of the people who don't want us to see and judge color, by only seeing and judging by color.
9
Yeah, cause we all know if you don't Tweet about something you obviously don't care about it.

Keep making stories out of nothing, Charles.
10
So, Macklemore gets dinged for appropriating black culture and also because his song subjects reflect the fact that he is white.

Do we need one of those tests to make sure people have dark enough skin before they start speaking rhythmically?
11
Hip Hop is to rural blacks as Mods were to Cockneys.

12
I think it's important to remember the notions in this post: http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archive…

Even if they are in your "wheelhouse" as could be argued for Macklemore et al, I think it's unfair to always require people to voice their opinion, unless you are a position of actual responsibility/authority like a president or PR person.
13
This is idiotic sanctimonious drivel.

So Macklemore is on tour and is supposed to... do what exactly?

No matter what he said you'd be on his ass.

If he'd tweeted "The Police are out of control! #ferguson"

You'd be "What do YOU know about white boy racist appropriator!"

This is such a tired script, Charles - The Stranger builds up and builds up a local artist for five years — shoves him down our throats — and the second he actually makes good, and get's popular you assholes set about the next years tearing the poor fucker down every chance you get. If I was a local Musician I'd never have anything to do with you dicks.

And what's even MORE tired is this bullshit excites contrarian morons who now get to feel like their tastes are morally superior and, boy, are they going to tell you all about it.
14
Not entering into the fray is a smart move, unless you have something incredibly insightful to say. The drivel that comes out of a celebrity's mouth when they feel obligated to say something "poignant" is mostly unbearable.
15
None of these people are trying to be black, I'm tired of hearing that argument.
16
Exactly Charles. And all those people who aren't minimum wage workers should be piping in on how the minimum wage is plenty to live on and a result of bad life choices, right ? Nobody ever objects to that.
17
Agree with the general angle of the comments here. Do we need white musicians chiming in with their 2¢ about the plight of young black men? We don't ask chefs in this country to take a position on everything that goes on in France or Italy or whichever country's cuisine they've made their own.
18
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.
- Abraham Lincoln
19
So should we expect Darius Rucker to speak up for white people?
20
If Macklemoire says nothing, he is silent about black issues while co-opting black culture.

If Macklemore says something, he is just another white guy telling people what to do and how to think.

But does anyone else remember when The Stranger was chafing the poor guy's shaft with how hard they used to ride his nuts constantly? Good times!

21
@17 "Do we need white musicians chiming in"

You and me? Probably not.

Are there people in this country who need to be reached and that are most likely to accept the message from a white celebrity? Yes.

I think there is some interesting ground here in terms of how much Hip Hop Culture (as a for instance) is still exclusively rooted in Black Culture and how far it has grown and evolved to be separate from its main origins, especially compared to (much further removed) Rock and Roll Culture (as another).

I do agree with the notion that is should not be considered mandatory for White celebrities, even those with extremely close ties to the Black Community, but I find that some of the way that this notion has been advanced, including here, troubling and disappointing. Still, I do think it is worth discussing what it says about this country that so many of these voices have not chimed in.
22
@17, did you just say that white americans and black americans live in a different country? because that's the problem right there. we do and we shouldn't.

Big shot entertainers are, for better or worse, leaders. They can amplify a message. I'd like a single one of you to say that he's had no impact on the conversation around marriage equality in this country.

It's a shanda that he hasn't said a word.
23
Silence.

https://twitter.com/Grynch206
https://twitter.com/AvatarDarko

25
@22 Oh for fuck sake.

The last four or five posts critical of Macklemore were stating precisely the OPPOSITE argument. That he was a cynical band-wagon jumper on the issue of gay marriage, exploiting a cultural movement, and NOT a leader of any kind.

Make up your fucking minds.

He's just a guy that had something he wanted to express in a song and it resonated. THAT'S all.

He is not elected. He is not obligated to say shit about any of your pet causes in any way. That is fucking absurd.

I mean fuck. Bell Hooks hasn't tweeted about Ferguson, either. I guess she's a race traitor, right?
26
Good Afternoon Charles,
I am gonna have to agree with most of the postings regarding Ferguson and the lack of celebrity input. I too, believe Miley, Bieber, Katy, Macklemore even my beloved Iggy (Pop) need to stay out of the fray. I have had grave reservations regarding "Celebrity insight/activism" for a long time now.

Personally, anything regarding Ferguson coming from the mouths of Miley, Bieber, Katy & Macklemore, I would take with a grain of salt. Macklemore still rankles because of his "Shylock" costume from a few months ago. @18 has my sentiments with the Lincoln quote.
27
Are black musicians that play alt-country appropriating white culture?
28
@26 HAHAHA. You've got the old. He was referring to Iggy Azalea.

But you're right - Iggy Pop should definitely not say anything
29
That's funny, because Nicki Minaj wants to be Brittish.
30
Call the whaa-mublance.
31
Are you suggesting that the events unfolding in Ferguson are representative of "black culture"?
32
@28 tka,
How embarrassing! :)
Man, am I old.
33
@31, Police brutality is part of the experience for many black people but I don't know why anyone would even think to call it their "culture." There are certain types of music, dance, speech, etc. that originated in black culture, and what we're talking about right now is whether white artists whose work relies heavily on those forms of expression have a duty to speak out about the darker side of the black experience in America today. This is pretty remedial stuff. Try to keep up.
34
Yet you all feel the need to defend yourself like we're living in post-race america.... riiiiiight.
35
@33 Thanks!
Are rioting and looting part of "black culture" or the "black experience"? How about strong-arm robbery?
36
@35 Is being an unrepentant racist pile of shit part of your culture?

Don't you have some Fox news Benghazi chat room to go masturbate in?

Hey, man. Don't get snippy. Just asking questions.
37
@35, Riots and looting are part of the human experience. Such chaos often occurs when people form large crowds and emotions are running high. As such, they can be the result of unrest or celebration.

Are you by any chance an alien who is learning about humanity for the first time? If so, click this link to see a video of college students rioting after their team won some sort of sporting event:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQ0_RxXD…

And click here to read about surfers rioting and looting after some sort of surfing event:

http://gawker.com/video-of-violent-rioti…
38
@37 No. White people ever riot. Like, you know, after let's say, oh, hockey games and important shit like that.

Never happens.

Nope. Only black people riot. Over trivial things. Like after a hundred years of their children being systematically brutalized and murdered by corrupt cops.

It's just part of the culture.
39
I suppose I shouldn't be stunned at the idiocy and incivility of Stranger comment boards, but it still surprises me every time how quickly commenters try to vilify Mudede and other slog posters.

No celebrity is obligated to post their feelings in 140 characters of a public medium, but the fact that out of all of the popular white artists who've capitalized on black culture, none have said a word? That's a problem. Easy: "Thoughts and prayers to the family of #MichaelBrown. Shows our society’s epidemic of police brutality against young black men."
40
Is there something black about justin biebers music? I must have missed that when i wasnt paying any attention to him or anyone else on this list. I suggest you give not giving a shit about them or anything they have to say whether on or off twitter a try, Mr. Mudede. You might find it makes the world just that much more sparkly and wonderful.
41
From an unregistered account @ 39:
I suppose I shouldn't be stunned at the idiocy and incivility of Stranger comment boards, but it still surprises me every time how quickly commenters try to vilify Mudede and other slog posters.

No celebrity is obligated to post their feelings in 140 characters of a public medium, but the fact that out of all of the popular white artists who've capitalized on black culture, none have said a word? That's a problem. Easy: "Thoughts and prayers to the family of #MichaelBrown. Shows our society’s epidemic of police brutality against young black men.”

I agree with this. Just as straight allies have been necessary in the struggle for civil rights for LGBT (et al) folks, we need white allies to stand with black people and to add their power and privilege to the struggle for racial equality. At the very least, it would be great to have more white allies speaking out against racial profiling, police brutality (in general, and specific to young black men), and condemning the seeming disregard for black lives when deaths like this occur.
42
I'm not implying this is true, but whenever Charles makes one of these troll posts, I imagine him excusing himself for a moment from his two paid companions, stubbing out a cigarette, and tapping a few phrases onto an old Dell laptop; then leaning back with a weary, Mitchum-esque grin and saying, "Now where we're we?"
44
"Everyone wants to sing my blues, nobody wants to live my blues"
45
How is rap "black culture"? Because most rappers are black? More white people listen to rap than black people. It's extraordinarily prejudice to claim a while genre of music to one race. I'm tired of you black racist bastards. Black man always trying to hold a white man down.
46
@39 Maybe if Mudede bothered to do his research, responded to legitimate criticism and didn't just occasionally strawman good points, he would be treated with a little more respect.

Everyone talks about what an intellectual he is, yet he's never ever willing to do the hard work of an intellectual. That first means checking your basic facts and testing the claims you make rather than endless guessing and speculation. Knowing the difference between the Washington Times and the Washington Post. It also means occasionally addressing legitimate criticism with something more than a basic strawman argument.

Finally, it means that when you make a claim, you back it up with facts and logically sound arguments. Coates and Piketty are great examples of folks who do this well. Mudede is the exact opposite.
47
How is rap "black culture"?

Because it originated in black communities and had african origins you fucking tool.
48
With great power comes great responsibility. These folks are role models, looked up to buy legions of fans. They should use that part for more than mere self-aggrandizement.
49
By not buy :(
50
@38
I wonder who shoots more black kids... White cops? Or other black kids?
51
@47 Classical music is "white culture." It originated in white communities and has European origins.

But that has no bearing on weather non-Europeans can authentically author, compose, or play good Classical music.

Same with rap. Or rock. Or jazz. Or fucking Tibetan throat singing for that matter.
52
@50 well, do you wonder if random black kids are trained and paid by the tax payers to uphold and enforce societies laws? Are you an imbecile?

So. Who would that be then? The police.

There will always be crime. And crime is always going to concentrate in the poorest most disenfranchised communities. We know this: Police brutality exacerbates disenfranchisement.

Therefor the best way to prevent crime is to lessen brutality and disenfranchisement. This has been studied extensively and is a settled matter in social science.

So. That means the overwhelming burden of accountability is on the police. We loan them power in exchange for keeping the peace according to constitutional principle. When they abuse their power society does not function well - so there needs to be severe penalties.

TLDR; for society to function the police must be held to a higher standard than random black kids.
53
@51 - Fair enough. But I'd also argue that there's a real risk of whitewashing seeing as how "white culture" is the dominant one. It's a poor analogy, but if I want real Mexican food, I don't go to Taco Bell.
54
Also well said @52.
55
White banksters steal trillions: get over a trillion of "borrowed" -from-future-generations as a "reward" (for their treasonous misbehavior). Black youth "steals" some cigars: "He deserved it! That nigger thug got what was comin' to him!" -- Yahoo! News commenters. .--- http://theyrule.net , http://www.corporatewelfare.org , http://www.ctj.org , http://www.alternet.org
56
There's like THIRTY Americas at this point in Time . . . .(and who the fuck wants to be a racial, political/lifestyle , or religious minority ANYWHERE these days? Have you seen Donetsk and Luhansk? Iraq? Chiapas? Pfft! I rest my fucking case . . . .
57
I kind of see your point. But it only really goes so far.

FI. When you want "real" pasta do you only eat at an Italian place with an Italian chef?

When you want "real" sushi do you only eat at a sushi place with a Japanese itamae?

In most cities in this world that would be impractical and frankly a foolish dismissal of great talents.

Cultural cross pollination (as in the case of white people rapping or black people playing cello or white sushi chefs) is not exploitative appropriation.

It's fundamentally necessary for understanding and innovation.

Identity politics have no place in art.

58
Have they charged Mike Brown for strong armed robbery and resisting arrest yet?
60
"I wonder who shoots more black kids... White cops? Or other black kids?"

Sorry, I meant "Aspiring" rappers.
61
"The Ferguson police chief, Thomas Jackson, said that it was around the time that Officer Wilson started talking to the two that he realized they fit the description of the suspects in the convenience store robbery."

Today's NYT. Looks like Officer Wilson knew about Brown's recent robbery.

"In that interview, Mr. Johnson admitted that he and Mr. Brown had stolen cigarillos from the store, said the lawyer, Freeman R. Bosley Jr."

OK, stop pushing that video that claims they paid for them.

" Fearing that the teenager was going to attack him, the officer decided to use deadly force. Some witnesses have backed up that account. "

All the bricks come tumbling down as the witnesses speak.
62
That's too bad, cause I've been waiting for Justin Bieber to tell me what to think about Ferguson.
63
Who kills more black people the random black kid or the police officer . When Bobby died no one justifies Bobby's death by speaking about Sean shooting up the mall , school or movie thearter ... Imjs .