Obama: Our first hip hop presidential candidate
Several months back, I happened across an interview with Obama on BET entitled, "What’s In It For Us? Barack Obama And the Black Vote." What really stunned me was when Barack started talking about being a fan of hip hop, including Jay-Z's new album, American Gangster:
I love the art of hip hop. I don't always love the message of hip hop. There are times when even ... with the artists I named -- the artists I love, you know -- there's a message that is not only sometimes degrading to women; not only uses the n-word a little too frequently; but also something I'm really concerned about, it's always talking about material things. Always talking about how I can get something. How I've got more money...
This was in stark contrast to most politicians, who can't denounce hip hop fast enough. I thought this was truly a revolutionary moment--our first hip hop presidential candidate. To me, it represented Generation X penetrating the political establishment, much like JFK was for the baby boomers.
I was reminded of that yesterday when I was watching TV and saw Obama mime Jay-Z and brush the dirt off his shoulder in reference to ABC's embarrassingly shallow debate.
Apparently, I wasn't the only one who picked up on the reference, because there's now this amazing YouTube mashup that features Jay-Z's Black Album banger as a soundtrack:
I love the bald black dude over Obama's right shoulder who gets the reference immediately and starts pointing like he's in the front row of a hip hop concert.
Obama's got 99 problems, but Hillary ain't one.