This is from a recent piece of mail I received regarding a video I posted to YouTube concerning the Nappy Headed Ho incident about year ago – if you do a search for it, you can find which video he is referring to… not exactly a kind hearted sort of ambassador work of art. I will confess to that right now. It takes me a long time to get to all the mail. But every now and then one of them is just really good or thought provoking. So I took the time to read it and respond. I am reprinting here word for word:
|Sub ject:||remarks regarding hip hop and the black people in your video|
|Date:||May 22, 2008|
This e-mail come later of the media has down played. I am concern about the remarks you made regarding jay z and rap, and the black community. First let me say that this country was founded on being gangster you kicked Native American ass, you (whites) kicked Mexican ass and black ass to organize what’s called the U.S.A… In your gangster endeavor your stripped a humble, peaceful people and turned them into N.W.A. (nigga with attitude). It is two hundred years later and you don’t like what you made. This is only a reflection of you and the world you have made. You mention the word hoe, and it s had something to do with black people. How does the work. How is the work hoe sunomus to black people, this is very ignorant on your part. When Europeans came in contact with African, Africans did not know what hoes were, these is American European culture. Dude the more I look at your clip the more I see the drugs involved…lol. I not going to say black people don’t have issues in our culture. Where did porn come from, whites victimize there people. Child porn, come on dude you are speaking on a small portion of black people. You are justifying imus’s rude racist comments about intelligent hard working women who happen to be African American. I understand you feel little victimized because it seems like a white man is being attack and your a white man. To some extent you are a victim, but you are a victim of white male in justice in this country. Now that the world is changing and you have to be accountable for your actions, you don’t like it. What comes around goes around the universal law. The nation of Islam tries to raise the rappers up and teaches them a new way and a more constructive way of getting there message across. Some women are hoes, black, white, Asian, Mexican what ever the case may be, they will sleep with a man for money or because he drives a nice car. Why don’t you attack those hoes, I doubt you will, and yes white people use the word hoe. Dude you are a trip
Excellent remarks. Thank you for writing. You make a lot of fantastic points. So many so that i would really like to post our dialog, if you don’t mind continuing one, on my public blog – because i really believe we are at a crossroads right now in America – perhaps more so than ever before. On the one hand you have people like me who are in the arts – so we are accustomed to and have been working with people from all different nationalities since we were teenagers playing music. We also have the so-called “liberals or lefties or hippies or revolutionary whites” that marched and protested right along side blacks for decades for civil rights and so now feel proud that they were part of something so revolutionary… i know some really incredible older people who are now in their sixties and seventies and eighties who were there on the front lines of those battles… and of course many athletes white or black are pretty intermixed here, and many younger kids – what they call the “millennium kids” have basically grown up in a very urban dominated society in regards to entertainment – with Tiger and Oprah and Michael Jordan and Jay Z being cultural icons. So they don’t even see color because it is all mixing together in their young minds. We are finally becoming one people. After so many centuries of such total fucking bullshit.
This is the reason why after all these years that most people with half a brain can clearly see that the best candidate for President of The United States in 2008 is Obama. Not because he’s black, but just because he’s just so freaking amazing in so many ways. He is a man that almost anyone would easily want to look up to and emulate.
But then on the other side, we still have racism and bigotry happening in a big way on both sides. There is a lot of heat underneath all this camaraderie. And my video that I posted showed some of that. I wasn’t being racist. But i was being sarcastic and ironic a lot – because i did feel that Rev Al used that situation in a personal opportunistic way to help himself and didn’t even care about the Rutgers girls. And like said, I used to smoke stogies with Big Al. We occasionally haunt the same joints. And generally he’s cool enough guy. But i just think he’s an opportunist at times.
And like i said, don’t let Chris Rock – who i think happens to be one of the smartest and funniest and insightful men out there right now come on television and insult black and white alike and then we turn around and attack Don Imus for those few words… and if Chris Rock would have said it “Boy them bitches are sure some nappy headed hoes!” we all would have been laughing our asses off. And you know it. Just typing it and picturing him say it makes me laugh. I love Chris. that was the point i was making.
Now the points that you are making are much deeper. Much much deeper than i went. and i think its important that they are out there. I don’t know who you are, black or white, but you are educated and smart and you’ve brought up some things that I’ve never even thought about before. “black people didn’t even have hoes till white Europeans introduced it to them…” wow. i mean, you got me. i mean, you got me in a lot of what you said.
It’s tough because as an artist, we want to be able to just keep the machine running. you know? Just keep on chugging with whatever happens to shoot out of our mouths at the time and just go with the flow of our creativity. But thank god you took the time you did to write to me. I learned a lot. It will probably prompt another video out of me to take a look at some of the issues you bring up. Because trust me, i don’t think we are done with battling racism in this country. I think we have some work to do still. in a lot of respects. On both sides.
Perhaps another video to address the issues you bring up… I am also a big fan of Cornell West and Spike Lee who i see around town all the time. And I’m telling you, these men feel very strongly that we are still facing very strong racism and bigotry and unfair treatment to the black men of our society and i would tend to agree. I am sincerely hoping that once Obama is elected that that might change a little bit.
Alright enough of my ranting. Keep it coming if you got more. I’m open to your thoughts and to sharing them.
May 24th 2008
Here is another one that happened to catch my eye. Simple, but fascinatingly totally covered up information to most of us who live here in the US.
RE: Who Killed MLK?
May 18, 2008
En joyed your post on the King assassination, and really felt your spirit as a person who is committed to social justice and the pursuit of truth and justice. In your research, have you come across information about the deaths of MLK’S brother (AD King), and mother Alberta King? AD allegedly, was an “expert” swimmer, but drowned in his pool. Alberta King was shot and killed by Marcus Wayne Chenault in the early 70’s. Incidentally, Chenault was a native of Ohio, who was driven to Atlanta by an unidentified party and subsequently killed Mrs. King while she played the organ at church services. Chenault stated that he was recruited in a plot to kill ‘”prominent” blacks.
Stay in good spirits my friend, and continue your research.
Thank you for your email. No, i have not as of yet come across these somber details. Just more sad covered up American BS. Thank you for shooting me the details and for your kind words. I will start digging deeper. I’ll tell you what. we know JER didn’t kill MLK. And for the life of me I just can’t figure out how a whole nation of 300 people can sit back and let this just stay “status quo.” I mean the bullets out of his gun weren’t even found in MLK’s body. Why is it so few people care about this? Scary and very confusing to me. Keep the faith bro. And as a great man once said “Fight the power. We gotta fight the powers that be!”
May 14th, 2008
This one from Argentina. And I just have to post her words because I love her enthusiasm because she TOTALLY got IT – though I am not one hundred percent sure what she means by “very acid in a cool way” except well…. I had started the whole YouTube pro ject as a one-year only cultural experiment and it opened up a lot of doors for me creatively that I never even knew existed and it also taught me a lot. I am currently writing a book as some know and a lot of what we learned from my YouTube experiment we are using in the book. In a year I was able to film about 300 videos and post about 85 of them. It’s the editing that takes all the time… But I’ll tell ya, what a learning experience…. if you want to know America, start a YouTube channel and start posting and dialogging with others… it is fantastic experience. Both in the best of ways and the worst of ways.
Hey Ed Hale,
I’m from Argentina.
The Barbarian Rulebook was great. Really, really acid in a cool way. Hope Secret Service henchmen don’t show up in your apartment and send you to Guantanamo!
I’m with you. Not only did I totally dig making the Barbarian Rulebook series, but I also sometimes worry about the same thing… I have no idea if people realize that my deadpan sarcasm is real or not…. Either way, thank you for writing and thank you for tuning in!
Now perhaps the most controversial of all of them is this recent barrage of comments that began based on one comment made by a young guy who just got back from Iraq. He served with a buddy of mine over there who got killed. A guy we all went to high school with. He was responding to the song I have up up on YouTube called White House Jihad. One of our favs. Something we are damn proud of, both artistically and lyrically. Frankly i don’t know how we pulled it off. We are still sometimes pleasantly surprised when we go back and listen to the song and read the lyrics. Not only are we surprised that we wrote those lyrics, we’re surprised we haven’t been hung yet… lol.
But this person who commented became good friends with Stan when they were in Iraq together. And he posted a few nasty comments about the song etc… and frankly one gets used to that. You don’t really even notice it after a while. But i watched the back and forth attacking as is the usual on YouTube over comments for a few days and didn’t say anything… it really isnt my place. some people like what you do. Some people don’t. you can’t change that. But what struck me is literally just what he said… i will let him speak for himself by pasting his comments below and you can always go check out all the hubbub… eventually i decided to personally respond. I figured i owed to him. After all, he watched Stan get blow up in truck. I just cannot imagine what that must have been like… So, in the end, though we totally stand behind the song and its lyrics, I decided to remove our friend’s name from the details in the song description. Call it a gesture of diplomacy, or perhaps just out of respect for both of them.
“Hi there, Not sure what to call you, but perhaps “friend” since we both were once friends with Stan. This is Ed Hale. I don’t get a chance to respond as often as i’d like to all the comments. But i wanted to personally just come on and say thank you for sharing with everyone. I have spent some time watching your own videos here on YouTube and find myself agreeing with a lot of the things you say. I am going to pull Stan’s name off the details of the video. 4 u and 4 him.”