Armed protesters peacefully march on Oklahoma Governor's Mansion

So there’s a lot to unpack from your response.

Okay... Honestly, all parties ought to take some responsibility. Look at the inner city and the music that gets glorified and the behavior it promotes? Who produces and markets that shit? It often glamorizes drugs, misogyny, violence and all sorts of trash.

That is a pretty generalized statement. I’m a white dude in my 30’s who use to make this same argument in my teens. It wasn’t until I moved out to college and had a diverse group of friends that my narrow world view expanded. A friend of mine got me into Lupe Fiasco and from there, I started opening my mind to more rap/hip-hop artists.

At this point, for every artist you can name that glamorizes drugs, and violence I can name five artists that don’t.

Make no mistake, drugs, violence, and misogyny are a subject of many rap songs, because a lot of artists rap about what it’s like growing up in the ghetto. It’s in the lyrics, as it is part of their stories. In fact, a lot of rap songs tell stories of social complexities that go far deeper philosophically than any other genre, simply because they have much more profound experiences to draw from that other artists were likely shielded from for their entire life.

There is absolutely a systematic oppression of black people, but it is a cycle and it comes from both sides.

Systematic racism is deeply rooted in the history of our country and has compounding effects that make it what it is today. To even act like it’s a question of just today’s left or right is incredibly short sighted. The only thing that is relative about today’s politics is that one side pretends it doesn’t exist while the other side barely understands it and has idea on how to address it but at least acknowledges it because they don’t want to be racist.

Racism has been around in this country since it’s conception, but it wasn’t until the 1900s that racist and discriminatory policies were intricately woven into our economy, culture, and government in ways that have had compounding effects that still ripple through our black communities today and play much more of a role to the state of these communities than the “hippity hoppity rap music”.

Throughout the 1900s, the century in which the middle class of America grew exponentially and largely has influenced the lifestyles people enjoy today, black people were repeatedly denied opportunities to advanced with everyone else.

In the 1910s racial zoning laws became a thing, segregating black and whites. Supreme Court would later rule it unconstitutional. Tax policy allowing Deductions for interest paid on mortgages is passed, a financial benefit that is an overwhelmingly disproportionate advantage to white people. Black people in large were denied any opportunity to own property.

In the 1920’s states across country began getting creative with zoning laws that would keep black and white people segregated without explicitly stating so. In doing so, they then under funded parks and schools in black communities and put it all towards the white communities. Nuisances and undesirable industries were moved into the black neighborhoods such as garbage dumps.

In 1921, the wealthiest black community in the country was bombed and massacres in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Completely dismantled the most successful black community leaving them with nothing. No real arrests.

In the 1930s during the Great Depression, the Federal Housing Administration is created as part of Roosevelt’s New Deal to stimulate the economy. FHA backed loans are created to insure mortgages to homeowners but only white neighborhoods. This leads to redlining of black communities, which is the when lenders withhold credit. The new deal focuses on suburban growth which attracts white people to move outwards where new investments are being made, leaving black communities behind to be ignored contributing to the decay of urban neighborhoods.

I’m not even going to bother continuing through the timeline. This was just how racism became institutionalized in the housing market. We are still 30 years out from the civil rights movement in this timeline and have to go back to the beginning to start the institutional racism of the justice system.

Imagine living as a black person today in a time where America has a booming middle class, that was achieved over a century of growth and opportunity that your ancestors were intentionally denied, and then the white people today who are living the reward of all those opportunities tell you that your own community is the problem and that you guys have done this to yourself.

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