Below is a short letter I wrote in respone to the article "Hard Knock Life and Honorable Hustling" http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/chi-0508280001aug28,1,5835965.story written in the Chicago Tribune by John Balz 8/28/05
In todays world it's hard to find someone who use their talents to cultivate their culture, race, country or world. And the ones that do are most often the ones ignored. I was shocked to see the article about Jay-Z (Hard Knock Life and Honorable Hustling by John Balz section 2 perspective.) not just because of the glorification of "hustling" but the way it and Black culture is being misrepresented. Although the rap artist, Jay-Z does deserve recognition for leaving his drug dealing life and turning hip-hop into an enterprise, where are the stories about the talented musicians that rap, sing and play about the positive? The ones that don't commend drugs and prostitutiion but teach others to rise above, hold on to faith and to put the gun down? To me, honorable hustlers are the ones who take the risk to speak out against the sins of this world. The ones that make their money adding to the welfare of their society. It's about time more talented African-Americans stop being the comedic vaudeville show for others to watch, point, laugh then leave to their "homes of White priviledge," (As Mr. Balz so eloquently put it.) while degrading the minds and the views of their own people.