Sunday, July 28, 2013

"My Presence Is Charity"


So speaketh His Lordship JayZ in response to Harry Belafonte's scathing (and entirely appropriate) criticism that someone has to up the ante as far as being socially responsible and committed to the community from which they've ascended the regal throne. Mr. JZ Carter seems miffed that someone who actually risked both career, and life and limb (repeatedly) is actually calling him out to step up and represent- and not by throwing money at fellow (Presidential) royalty in DC. 

I have never been blind to the fact that ignorance and arrogance comes in all colors. And while I'd like to blame this on a lack of education, I'd be either wrong, or lying. This is deeper, more troubling; this is about the blatant self interest that infects us all whatever our color, the greed that blinds us to all, but ourselves.

Many of today's athletes, celebrities and entertainers of color pay homage to Ali; but how many would actually risk their millions, their fame, their livelihoods at the very pinnacle of their careers- to give it all up for something greater than themselves? The very thought would seem absolutely alien, foolhardy at best- they simply can't think beyond the prison of their own needs and desires.

Whether you're a desperate young man named Shawn Corey Carter growing up in the projects of Brooklyn, or the pampered son of a real estate mogul named Fred Trump, there's something missing in their very hearts, something they will never find an answer to in their next million, something we will never find peering into the light of our cell phones

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