Music Review: Joyner Lucas Raps the Truth

By Josh Cowden, reporter

Joyner Lucas, a rising hip-hop artist from Baltimore, Maryland, ruffled some feathers last week with his powerful new video called I’m Not Racist, which begins with Lucas rapping from the perspective of a blue collar white man sporting a “Make America Great Again” hat.

He begins his verse saying Screamin’ “Black Lives Matter” / All the black guys rather be deadbeats than pay your bills.

He then continues with a list of complaints and grievances on what he feels helps fuel the negative stigma surrounding black men.

He gets down to the root of the problem, which can be summed up in another quotable line from the song:  It’s like we livin’ in the same buildin’ but split into two floors, I’m not racist / But there’s two sides to every story, I wish that I knew yours.

The video does a great job at portraying both sides of the political spectrum in America. Whether it boils down to black vs. white or Democrat vs Republican. Either way, both sides have a voice and want to be heard.

Videos like this are extremely important in today’s hyper-vigilant political atmosphere and do an amazing job at starting discussions. These important talks between the differing perspectives of blacks and whites have been quietly discussed in our own social circles, but the conversation has never really taken a culturally stage.

With more tension than ever in the political atmosphere, a real conversation between the left and right is severely needed. It’s often so easy to pick one side and let the extremes of both parties fuel anger towards the opposite.

Humans are intrinsically built to want to be on a team or a tribe, so the political atmosphere is the perfect breeding ground for attacking the opposing side. Regardless of what, who, or why the action is being done, the other side will always see it as an attack.

Both verses end with the same words of advice. They point out the fact that there are two sides to every story but the opinion is seemingly only formed from one view point. If the world can possibly get into a place where it’s easier to see one’s self in the shoes of another and really understand their plight and struggles, then hope may still be salvageable.

If the political climate continues as a one-sided yelling match with no intent to listen to the other side, I fear for where the country is headed.

The black man in the video responds with some powerful words of his own. I’m sorry you can never feel my life / Tryna have faith, but I never felt alright / It’s hard to elevate when this country’s ran by whites / Judging me by my skin color and my blackness / Tryna find a job but ain’t nobody call me back yet.”

A conversation is clearly needed and it won’t be solved by one video. That being said, this video did an amazing job at really trying to start that conversation and help progress us further as a culture.  Watch the video here and let us know your thoughts.

 

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