In Kanye West’s interview on Big Boy TV, he made some points I want to elaborate on. He discussed the idea of him turning his back on the culture. Actually, he was asked about how people perceive him turning his back on his “culture”. His response was brilliant.
Essentially Kanye said he was turning his back on victim-hood culture. Victim-hood culture is the set of cultural norms that inform people to first identify problems in their lives, then identify the systemic “oppressors” who are heaping these unfair and undo burdens upon them. After the “oppressed” identify their “oppressors”, they try to tear them down to make the system more “fair” and “equitable” – whatever that means.
Kanye decided he was tired of focusing on who to blame. He noted that everyone wants to the blame white people for their problems, but no one wants to talk about the opportunities people have to become financially successful. In fact, he noted that in hip-hop culture the most glorified behavior is not productive to improving their lives. For example, he noted a few times in the interview that rap and hip-hop glorify crime, and spending money on things like foreign cars, jewelry, and shoes. Instead, Kanye believes people should be learning about personal finance and land ownership.
Kanye spoke about land ownership more than once in this interview, and he pushed it as a means for black people to begin accumulating real wealth. His message sought to turn people away from what holds them back to what they can still achieve in spite of any inequity they have encountered. This type of message is true empowerment.
Many people, including myself, can attest to the value of thinking forward as opposed to finding reasons for why you are not successful. There is also a movement within the black community on Twitter called the Hotep Movement. The aim of the Hoteps, or what I gathered from listening to Hotep Jesus on Rogan and Michael Malice’s show, was that Hoteps are about black empowerment through education and business.
The Hotep movement focuses on learning about history, economics, business, and government so they can build wealth. The wealth they build can be used for business creation and inter-generational improvements in living standards. This type of focus is what I heard Kanye talking about.
He is not focused on who to blame for his problems. He is focused on true self-empowerment, and allowing God to show him the way.