Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Nothing Is Certain Except Death And Taxes

So I sent the JW Marriott anti hip-hop campaign to a handful of people, and looking at some of the comments and e-mails I've received, there seems to be a good faction of people shrugging their shoulders, and wondering why this campaign in particular needled me so much.

I don't know, maybe there's some muscle reflex there. I understand that it is ok to not always want hip hop around. But like Copyranter said in the comments, it's the visual/text combo that makes it sketchy. Plus "hip hop" for me is about the spirit of independence. Freedom, if you will. Like rock & roll, when it first hit the scene.

And I haven't seen any "rock without the roll" ads. Whatever.

Anyways, here's a link to a video someone sent in to me for a documentary called America: Freedom To Fascism. The promo vid runs a little long. And sometimes the anti-government propoganda is hard to digest without Michael Moore serving it to me like applesauce. But I think they're saying we don't have to pay taxes?? Correct me if I'm wrong.

America: Freedom To Fascism

(sent in by Viper at 7 and a Crescent, a name I havent heard since Digable Planets, he also has a bunch of old school R&B and hip-hop videos posted)


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Is Viper a Five Percenter? "7 and a crescent" was the symbol of the Five Percenter Muslims, I used to be heavy into the Five Percenter Mathematics when I was younger. The Digable Planets were 5 Percenters. Back then just about everyone dabbled in it.

    Honestly, even though I grew up with hip-hop and all and I enjoy it, I can totally understand why people don't want it around and why it wouldn't appeal to some consumers. When events or venues focus around hip-hop, things tend to get ugly, crass and belligerent in a hurry. Do you know anyone who has been to South Beach during Hip-Hop Fashion week? I know people who were barricaded into thier hotels because of craziness in the street, fights breaking out, people coming into establishments with big entourages and wreaking havoc. Not all of hip-hop's bad reputation is undeserved. If you don't grow up around it, it's horrific. And rock? That's so mainstream and neutered now that it's nonthreatening anyway. Punk nowadays is Avril Lavigne and Good Charlotte for Pete's sake.

  3. Hi! Came over via Liz @ Granny Vibe. I want to gush like a teenager. Thoughtful (thought provoking!) and side-splitting funny. Thanks for sharing your awesome talent. ~LA

  4. adgirl7/19/2006

    I work at an African American advertising agency and I sent this ad around and my colleagues agree that the degree of subtlety employed in the language of this ad can be equated to the person that stands behind their curtains watching the cross burn rather than the overt racism of the cross burner. Although there are times when we may be sensitive I don't think this is one of them. While hip-hop has some serious issues at this point in its history; hip-hop has not bashed other genres/mediums in the way other genres/mediums have bashed it. I think something to consider is: where rock and jazz were co-opted by others and the world has to be reminded they were born in black culture hip hop (despite eminem) is still unabashedly Black and there in lies the "blessing" of larger society to bash it at will. But that's just my 2 cents.

  5. I'm a bit torn about the whole ad thing. Part of me cringes at the whole 'no blacks please, we're on vacation' implications here. The pointed dismissal of hip hop doesn't sit well either but overall I'm not Jay-Z vs. Cristal irritated. I'd put it on the irritation level of the clerk who puts my change on the counter when my hand is held out. Or someone who asks me if I, and by extension other brown people, tan in the sun. Ultimately, I feel sad for the ad kids who think they did something really clever.

    Re: the video. Wow. I suppose it's no more scary than The Handmaid's Tale and the like but it makes me consider following Thoreau into the woods.

    Apparently you can excuse yourself from taxes by saying you conscientiously object to the government and its current policies. Give it a try and let me know how it works out. I've got your bail money all sorted out.

  6. Devils Advocate: If you don't embrace hip hop then does that mean you don't embrace African Americans or.....people of color period...911 says I don't like the verbiage but its just an ad, but they also just got stashed in the Tommy Hilfiger myth file so no visiting by me...funny how that works, realizes that people do it to him and others all the time.....1

  7. Anonymous7/20/2006

    Notice the admonition against the uncessary posturing, that is the ad says come cool w/o posturing. Translation: you will not see any Negrodian swagger at our fine establishment, only hip folks, like the happy white couple in the picture.

    The ad appeal is to a group of Whites who want to feel in the know, want to feel connected, want to act hip w/o any acknowledgement of where they got the cool from. They want to give the impression that they birth cool. (just as Blacks birth jazz and most music forms). They want the cred w/o the street i.e. Justin Timeberlake.

    So Just Whitey want the hip w/out the hop. They want to appear cool.

    Odd indeed. This is the very cool and hip that Just Whitey has appropriated from us for centuries.

    Yeah, I am not going to book a room at Just Whitey's house.

  8. Anonymous8/07/2006

    Just Whitey? And here I thought it was exactly that kind of racism that was the problem. "They said it first" is not a defendable argument.


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