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This is a picture of a 13 year-old boy in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. 
Last night my internet was down so I threw in an old DVD, “City of God.” On the bonus features of the DVD, there’s a documentary about gang warfare in Brazil called “Memoirs of a Personal War.” I had seen the documentary a long time ago, but I had forgotten it and last night it really made an impact on me. First I will say that it definitely made me feel aware of all the privilege I have as an American, and as someone who grew up in a household that was, for the most part, economically stable- but even living in the worse projects in the US is better than living in the slums of Brazil (favelas).

This documentary shows kids as young as 11 talking about committing horrible acts of murder and feeling no remorse. Drug dealing gangs are either shooting at each other, or the police. Life in the favela is equivalent to life in a military warzone. There is footage in this documentary of police shooting at these youth with high-powered weaponry and using tactics that are straight out of an army training course. While I was in college I was taught about an international movement that wanted to officially classify police violence in Brazil as genocide. In the documentary, even a police captain admitted that the system does not work and that the police are corrupt. When the police aren’t killing, they’re arresting people and taking them to prisons that make San Quentin look like a picnic. The documentary showed footage of the prisons and each cell is packed full with black and brown youth. Honestly I had an emotional response to seeing that and getting a reminder that the issues we face in the black and brown community in the US are the same ones being faced by our people all over the world. Unless you subscribe to the racist belief that African, Indigenous, and Latino people are naturally criminals and inherently geared towards evil, this should make you realize how intentional and deliberate all of this is. We still have yet to move on from slavery.

When you really think about it, the US and Brazil are actually not that different. Right now in Chicago there is an epidemic of street violence, particularly amongst black youth. It is not uncommon for there to be weekends where the number of homicides is almost in triple digits. Also, every 36 hours a black or brown person is murdered by police in the United States. Recently we’ve been seeing more and more cases where these murders have been recorded on film- yet they continue to happen. This is thrown in our faces for us all to see and yet the police and government keeps killing unchecked, as if they couldn’t care less about their misdeeds being exposed- they’re going to keep doing what they want and we are powerless to stop them. Even if they aren’t saying this directly, the message is very clear. 

The biggest difference I see between the US and Brazil is that over here, the circumstances that I described above are marketed as entertainment. The American DVD “Hood 2 Hood” basically shows the same thing as the Brazilian documentary, yet it is sold to entertain while the latter is meant to educate. I still don’t see how watching young black men in miserable conditions and short life expectancies is entertaining. “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas” is a video game where the main character is a gang member and the player earns points and advances for committing robberies and drive-by shootings against other black and brown people. Chief Keef is a celebrated rapper whose lyrics personify every issue I’m talking about. He’s been in the news for being connected to another teenage rapper’s death and shooting at police. The fault does not lie within Chief Keef but the people spending millions of dollars on marketing him and his pain as entertainment. I believe that this form of entertainment has desensitized us as a culture and helped make this type of poverty, violence, and misery acceptable. Don’t forget that most of this media is consumed by white people (they are the majority in this country, after all) who are far-removed from the places where this violence occurs, not just physically but culturally. However I am convinced that if we only saw this violence in our communities and on the news instead of MTV and WorldStar Hip-Hop, the people would be more motivated to make a change. 

Just some food for thought. One day I would like to travel to  Brazil and do some organizing and workshops with the youth there. Hopefully, if keep pushing my form of entertainment I’ll be able to get the resources to do that. But that Chief Keef is some heavy competition…
( Another interesting note is that the guns in this picture are made by Israeli and American companies. With all this recent talk about gun control, I’m surprised that the finger has not been pointed at the people MAKING the guns. Even though these weapons were obtained illegally, if you follow the paper trail far enough you’ll see that every single bullet fired in the slums is profit for these companies. )

This is a picture of a 13 year-old boy in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. 

Last night my internet was down so I threw in an old DVD, “City of God.” On the bonus features of the DVD, there’s a documentary about gang warfare in Brazil called “Memoirs of a Personal War.” I had seen the documentary a long time ago, but I had forgotten it and last night it really made an impact on me. First I will say that it definitely made me feel aware of all the privilege I have as an American, and as someone who grew up in a household that was, for the most part, economically stable- but even living in the worse projects in the US is better than living in the slums of Brazil (favelas).

This documentary shows kids as young as 11 talking about committing horrible acts of murder and feeling no remorse. Drug dealing gangs are either shooting at each other, or the police. Life in the favela is equivalent to life in a military warzone. There is footage in this documentary of police shooting at these youth with high-powered weaponry and using tactics that are straight out of an army training course. While I was in college I was taught about an international movement that wanted to officially classify police violence in Brazil as genocide. In the documentary, even a police captain admitted that the system does not work and that the police are corrupt. When the police aren’t killing, they’re arresting people and taking them to prisons that make San Quentin look like a picnic. The documentary showed footage of the prisons and each cell is packed full with black and brown youth. Honestly I had an emotional response to seeing that and getting a reminder that the issues we face in the black and brown community in the US are the same ones being faced by our people all over the world. Unless you subscribe to the racist belief that African, Indigenous, and Latino people are naturally criminals and inherently geared towards evil, this should make you realize how intentional and deliberate all of this is. We still have yet to move on from slavery.

When you really think about it, the US and Brazil are actually not that different. Right now in Chicago there is an epidemic of street violence, particularly amongst black youth. It is not uncommon for there to be weekends where the number of homicides is almost in triple digits. Also, every 36 hours a black or brown person is murdered by police in the United States. Recently we’ve been seeing more and more cases where these murders have been recorded on film- yet they continue to happen. This is thrown in our faces for us all to see and yet the police and government keeps killing unchecked, as if they couldn’t care less about their misdeeds being exposed- they’re going to keep doing what they want and we are powerless to stop them. Even if they aren’t saying this directly, the message is very clear. 

The biggest difference I see between the US and Brazil is that over here, the circumstances that I described above are marketed as entertainment. The American DVD “Hood 2 Hood” basically shows the same thing as the Brazilian documentary, yet it is sold to entertain while the latter is meant to educate. I still don’t see how watching young black men in miserable conditions and short life expectancies is entertaining. “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas” is a video game where the main character is a gang member and the player earns points and advances for committing robberies and drive-by shootings against other black and brown people. Chief Keef is a celebrated rapper whose lyrics personify every issue I’m talking about. He’s been in the news for being connected to another teenage rapper’s death and shooting at police. The fault does not lie within Chief Keef but the people spending millions of dollars on marketing him and his pain as entertainment. I believe that this form of entertainment has desensitized us as a culture and helped make this type of poverty, violence, and misery acceptable. Don’t forget that most of this media is consumed by white people (they are the majority in this country, after all) who are far-removed from the places where this violence occurs, not just physically but culturally. However I am convinced that if we only saw this violence in our communities and on the news instead of MTV and WorldStar Hip-Hop, the people would be more motivated to make a change. 

Just some food for thought. One day I would like to travel to  Brazil and do some organizing and workshops with the youth there. Hopefully, if keep pushing my form of entertainment I’ll be able to get the resources to do that. But that Chief Keef is some heavy competition…

( Another interesting note is that the guns in this picture are made by Israeli and American companies. With all this recent talk about gun control, I’m surprised that the finger has not been pointed at the people MAKING the guns. Even though these weapons were obtained illegally, if you follow the paper trail far enough you’ll see that every single bullet fired in the slums is profit for these companies. )

BAY AREA! Get involved and give back this holiday season:

I am thrilled to announce that I will be participating in several charity drives this month. I’m working with several different people and organizations to try and raise toys for children and winter coats for the needy. If you’re in the San Francisco/Oakland area your support would be greatly appreciated. Here are some events going on THIS WEEKEND:

The homie L*Roneous throws toy drives every year, and this year he’s generously decided to throw one for the formerly-homeless families I work with in the Tenderloin. The goal is to collect 50 toys for boys and girls of all ages.

The SF chapter of the Universal Zulu Nation is celebrating its 7th anniversary by holding a coat drive. Their goal is to receive 300+ donations between now and January.

Break 4 Tots is an event sponsored by the Zulu Nation/Cloud 9 Tribe/Daily City Teens program. They are holding their 7th annual  dance competition and canned food/toy drive for Daly City families.

This a complete list of when, where, and what you can donate- the cool thing is that they are all awesome events:

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 7th:

Molotov’s

582 Haight Street, San Francisco CA

DJs Deeandroid, Koo-C, Tay, & Jusone will be spinning classic hip-hop and punk rock to examine the history between the two genres.

Accepting: Canned food & coats

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 8th:

Showdown

10 6th St. San Francisco CA

Dj Sake One in the mix all night long on his Frisco Jones alone! 10 pm - 2 am

Accepting: Toys

Grant & Green Saloon 

1371 Grant Ave. San Francisco CA

Venture into North Beach for some Troubleman… Dj Troubleman, that is. fresh tunes broadcast from 10 pm - 2 am

Accepting: Toys

Shine Lounge

1337 Mission St, San Francisco CA

SF All Tribes Zulu Nation 7 year anniversary party with DJs Apollo, Koo-C, Sake One, TD Camp, and Delrokz

Accepting: Coats


Chopsticks Urban Art Space

2201 14th Ave. Oakland CA

You like street art? How about stickers? This is a sticker party for all ages of “slap” enthusiasts. noon - 8 pm

Accepting: Toys

Luka’s Taproom & Lounge

2221 Broadway, Oakland CA

Dj Kevvy Kev & guests live in the mix for some funky “SMOOVE” rhythms. your favorite Dj’s favorite Dj. 10 pm - 2 am

Accepting: Toys

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9th:

Bayshore Community Center

450 Martin St, Daly City CA

7th Annual Break 4 Tots b-boy competition

Accepting: Toys and canned food

If you would like to support but cant make it out to any of the events, you can drop off toys or donations to the Solidarity Co-Op, 800 Larkin (at Eddy) - Monday thru Friday noon - 6 pm. To arrange to donate canned food or coats, please e-mail alltribessf.uzn@gmail.com

So there you have it! Three days to donate canned food, coats, and/or toys in San Francisco, Daly City, and Oakland! If you have the time to make it to at least ONE of these locations and the resources to participate, please come through!

3 minute+ freestyle at Balboa High School during their Youth Solidarity event 11/29/12.


Shoutout to the youth leader Oscar on the beatbox.

TOMORROW NIGHT! Please support the Solidarity Organizing Project (SOP) of Balboa High School as they host the Youth Solidarity Fair. I will be performing as well as many others, check out this video for more details.


For those that missed it, here is the recorded stream of my Hip-Hop & Activism Workshop, presented to the youth of Seattle Young People’s Project last Thursday August 23rd.The workshop is about hip-hop’s relation to the social movements of the 60s and 70s, how the government destroyed those movements and how they’re using those same tactics on hip-hop.

Check it out and let me know what you think!

This Friday I’m doing a benefit concert for the young people of Seattle. Watch this video to find out more and please support! Spread the word, donate to the youth organization, and if you’re in the area COME THROUGH!

Menace to Society: Why So Many Young Black Men are Accused of Being in Gangs (SF Weekly)

Read the article here: http://www.sfweekly.com/2012-08-08/news/gangs-police-race-sfpd-calgang-jeff-adachi-george-gascon-street-terrorism-enforcement-and-prevention-act/


to be young, black, and in san francisco you might as well have a target on your back… if the media/cops used the term “troubled youth” instead of “gang member” incidents like these would play out way different. don’t think this doesn’t go hand-in-hand with the elitists who run SFs plan to slowly eliminate almost any poor & people of color from the city. wake up.



rest in peace

rest in peace

This Saturday is Rock The School Bells, a hip hop conference for youth. I’m doing a workshop on Bay Area Hip-Hop History and also performing with dead prez, Rocky Rivera, and more.  Hit the link to cop your tickets for the concert and use this promo code to receive a discount: “dregs” http://rtsb5.eventbrite.com/ All proceeds made at the concert will go towards scholarships for our youth. With 500 seats at $12 each, we can potentially raise $6000 for tuition, books, and materials for our students.
This Saturday is Rock The School Bells, a hip hop conference for youth. I’m doing a workshop on Bay Area Hip-Hop History and also performing with dead prez, Rocky Rivera, and more.

Hit the link to cop your tickets for the concert and use this promo code to receive a discount: “dregs” http://rtsb5.eventbrite.com/

All proceeds made at the concert will go towards scholarships for our youth. With 500 seats at $12 each, we can potentially raise $6000 for tuition, books, and materials for our students.