D.L. Chandler's frequent thoughts on the world of hip hop and beyond

Friday, October 01, 2004

Time Keeps On Tickin': Voting Deadlines, Hip Hop, Politics & You

I don’t want to bog down my week’s blog with discussions of the already heavily discussed Presidential Debate. However, just moments after the debates started I happened to enter an apartment lobby where a heated discussion between a female Kerry supporter and an apparent fan of Bush, a young man. I was never clear on the gentleman’s angle as he was leaving as I entered, but the woman (an attorney, she said) vehemently discounted Bush to anyone within earshot. She raised an interesting point of tracing the transmission of terrorist websites and why they haven’t been located using our “vast IT resources and skills‿. I’m sure, as I said last night in that brief conversation, efforts of that sort are certain to be made with immediacy. I cannot imagine, as this attorney believed, that Bush and the rest of his party leave these sites up as a form of wartime propaganda. What agenda would it serve to torture the public with these beheading websites that taunt our so-called incompetence? Why would anyone use that tactic to insure votes or galvanize troops and the public? As much as I support anyone’s right to voice his or her views, I can’t say I agreed with that at all. Living in the D.C. area, you’re bound to any number of these types of political firefights. It’s good fodder for discussion at the bar at any rate.
With the voting deadlines all but passed, the movement now is focused on insuring voter turnout. We’ve had a number of national and local summits – a summit is taking place today at the University of Pittsburgh – that seem to have gathered the number strength necessary to make a difference. The Hip Hop and youth political movement is now a weekly news item in many papers across the country. Just as it was in 2000, the melding of movements and cultures is a hot topic. There was even talk of a month-long event kicking off in D.C. today but I can’t seem to find any links on the subject. It’s encouraging, it’s exciting and it’s definitely necessary.
But it’s nearly not enough.

I try so hard to not sound like a broken record but I was right in the midst of the media hype in 2000 surrounding this new Hip Hop and politics movement. I was a part of it as well and I’ve been let down by the lack of sincerity shown since then – even by people who know are the main voices representing the movement. I’m a big skeptic, I realize it now more than ever but I have to be in order to keep myself aware of what is to transpire. I’m not sure what’s going to happen next month but form here on out, I’m making sure everyone I know isn’t just satisfied with sending in those registration cards. I’m going to annoy the hell out of them to get to the polls and finally make a change. After the election, I intend to check up on all these Hip Hop political fusions and PACs to see if they’re really serious about empowering people through the power of voting and democracy. Focused political education and awareness shouldn’t just be a necessity; it should be an expected right.

It’s not about the numbers anymore. It’s preparing future generations to understand it’s more than just picking one over the other. Educate yourselves and inspire others.


Post a Comment

<< Home