Published in Jan 2018

Music: Money is the #1 weapon that white supremacist systems use to destroy the morale of black people

As you might know, I'm a big fan of hip-hop music. In fact, it's pretty much the only kind of music I listened to for most of my youth and beyond. As a black man, I've seen how our culture played a seminal role in creating one of the most powerful artforms in the history of the world.

As a Financial Scientist, I've also noticed how our community has been misled through some of the economic messages in hip-hop. Every other song pushes imagery of money, material possessions and enough consumerism to drive even the highest-paid person to bankruptcy court.

Here's what's so ridiculous about all of this: I hear a million and one songs in which the artist is telling our young people that there is nothing more important than money, but you don't hear a single lyric on how to actually obtain it. You don't hear artists rapping about how to make investments, how to buy a home, how to start a business. All you hear is that they magically received a truck load of money from some random white person and that they plan to give it all right back in the strip club or at the car dealership.

At what point are we going to realize that this mindset is both ignorant and destructive? Poverty has devastating effects on our community and people are dying over crumbs every single day. The last thing we need in the midst of this economic chaos is for us to celebrate media personalities who boast about how much money they are donating back to our oppressors.

Also know this: Saying that you love money and want money without learning how to invest is like saying that you plan to drive across the country but have no interest in even looking at a map. Investing is the map that guides you to the land of wealth, yet, for some reason, people expect to receive the benefits of having money without learning the tools to obtain it.

That's really, really stupid. We are smarter than this, but racist media dumbs us down and makes us think it's OK to be financially illiterate. At the same time, money is the #1 weapon that white supremacist systems use to destroy the morale of black people.

What gives?

By Dr. Boyce Watkins