In the case of Michael Brown’s racially charged murder, not many black celebrities spoke out. One would see Missouri native and rapper Nelly on the streets of Ferguson showing support for the cause. R&B artist John Legend took to Twitter to express his feelings on the situation, and rapper Talib Kweli followed suit by traveling to Ferguson and live tweeting everything that he observed. He also gives an interview on CNN. But this leads one to wonder: Where’s Beyoncé on the matter? Where’s the outspoken Kanye that we all know and love? Where are the highly influential people of the African-American community?
This apathetic attitude from the black community temporarily faded when 14 of today’s biggest names in hip-hop collaborated on a track dedicated to Mike Brown and the civil turmoil in Ferguson. Entitled “Don’t Shoot”, the themes of the track involves racial injustice and the deaths of other young African-American men such as Trayvon Martin and Emmett …show more content…
But as time went on, it has also perpetuated and contributed to the reestablishment of certain social issues in black spaces. With sexism and homophobia being perpetuated along with violence, it still raises the question of whether black spaces have improved or worsened as a result of hip-hop.
Hip-hop has always been a form of resistance from ‘normative’ American culture, but it backfires when that same normative culture uses the implications of hip-hop to justify wrongdoing. American culture sees hip-hop as something that afflicts the black community with violence and causes occurrences such as “black on black” crime. That is exactly what happened with “Don’t Shoot”: its message was overshadowed by the existence of “blacks killing each other all the time” and the rappers who promote such violence in their music.
Despite this effort from the hip-hop community in dedication to Mike Brown and the young black youth who were murdered before him, this effort was the only public one. No form of support or awareness was made from any of the featured artists before or after the song was released. The purpose that hip hop originally had was not being