This morning as I was on my way to work I had The Russ Parr Morning Show on my radio, and at that point in the program it was time for DJ QuickSylva‘s mix. I noticed almost immediately that the segment was a tribute to “conscious rappers”: Tupac, Nas, Common, Talib Kwalei, etc. A running subject in all the lyrics were drug distribution, drug use and drug impact on a people (mainly Black people).
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I come from an African American & African studies background. The idea of a “generation of crack babies” came back to mind. I started thinking again about the era in which I live. I’ve grown up in a time where my friends, family members and young adults in America altogether are survivors of what we know as the Crack Epidemic. From the late 70’s to about the early part of the 90’s when it was overtly problematic, there were children born as a product of this disease. Whether physically ingested in the critical stages of a mother’s wound or emotionally and mentally disturbed be broken homes (with all the chaos that entails), my generation as been shaped by the culture.
I won’t go too deep, because honestly I’d like to read more literature based upon research which explains how crack has impacted America. However, I do come from the P.O.V. of a black woman who’s been a witness thereof, so I can speak for the African American communities in which I’ve lived. I find myself disheartened and bothered when I hear in the news another young person has committed a crime; then they portray that young individual as crazy or uncivil. Does not the crack epidemic speak to, and not completely accounting for, present behaviors? Just something to keep the conversation going…