Sometime in 1999 or maybe it was early 2000, Mos Def & Talib Kweli ( commonly known as Blackstar) released an EP titled “Hip Hop for Respect” in response to the death of Amadou Diallo, who was shot 41 times while reaching for his wallet, by New York City Police. A decade later both artists still continue to stand up for equality and social justice.
Recently my otha mother Judge LaDoris Cordell (ret) invited me to an Inforum discussion she would be having with Kweli in San Francisco. I jumped at the opportunity to see two people I truly admire meet and discuss hip hop, rampant police brutality, social injustice and the role of the artist within such a paradigm.
Ultimately, I was unable to experience the conversation in person due to a prior engagement ( I had tickets to see KRS ONE). However; it didn’t stop me from enjoying this well researched, encouraging, relevant and often funny conversation online, due to efforts made possible by The Commonwealth Club of California.
Join us now in revisiting this refreshingly honest discourse on race, justice and hip hop. Thank you Judge Cordell for making this available to us and for your continued support, encouragement and example of black excellence. This is why we’re here!
* Editors note. Due to some technical difficulties at the beginning of the video we recommendation you fast forward to the 9:07 mark and then press play. You won’t want to miss the HBG shout out that happens right around that point either! Enjoy~
Devoya Mayo is Co-Creator of The Happy Black Girl
Get To Know An HBG is her favorite column to write.
You can contact her directly at email@example.com