#SpeakBlack : Happy Birthday Jay Z

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Music: Jay Z,  “Minority Report”, Kingdom Come 

I woke up remembering what December 4th meant before Eric Garner—today marks Shawn Jay Z Carter’s 45th Birthday and I am yearning for him and his constituency to make noise. Where is Kanye when you need him most? Where are all of those Millionaires and Rock Stars who profit from Black Music and Black Struggle in the wake of Eric Garner?

For hours I strolled up and down my twitter, facebook, and instagram newsfeeds looking for something from someone that would lead me in the direction of clarity… And there I found the answer:


America doesn’t give a fuck about Black People, White People, Indians, or Color period; they care about the source of MONEY. And Niggas around the world, if you haven’t gotten the memo, the Hood is that source— not your opinion. No matter how hood you are, no matter how much Ebonics you speak, if you can do something good enough to make a million-dollar profit worth grabbing your balls, you are worthy of respect and ears. And because of that, without realizing, we search for Jay Z in times like these because he has successfully and respectfully earned America’s attention in a language that WE understand.

Although we naturally look to our heros— Oprah, Beyoncé, Obama to make a significant impression on the final outcome of this tragedy; they still cannot do it by themselves. They cannot continuously be the representation of the Black voice because that perpetuates marginalization. We all know that there are a million Mike Brown and Eric Garners. Some choose to keep quiet about their fallen soilders because we are trained that weaping may endure for one, but joy comes in the morning. We endure. And thusly, we have been trained to believe our voices don’t matter. But in this democracy, in this skin, we matter more than we may collectively understand.

We, together, must do all that is necessary to hold the justice system accountable.

We, together, must talk about it until our tongues quote Illmatic as if it were scripture.

We must protest until our limbs are numb. And when we get tired, we must rest knowing that we did everything in our individual and collective power to dismantle the traditionally systemic mistreatment toward people of Color.

Eric Garner, Mike Brown, and Oscar Grant, were fathers, sons, and brothers but most importantly they were all YOUNG. Although we can debate the semantics of these cases, we ALL saw Eric Garner’s last waking moments:

Standing. Unarmed on his corner, he speaks up,

 “I’m tired of ya’ll always messin’ with me—This STOPS Today!”

Hands Up. “I can’t Breathe.”

“I can’t breathe.”

“I can’t breathe.”

“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t breathe.”
“I can’t b…”

We Can’t …

Be Quiet. We don’t understand your language.

We #SpeakBlack … We #SpeakBack