"Elders, Youth, Saul Williams and Black Revolution"
Last Night I was at the Saul Williams poetry read/lecture @ the University of Pittsburgh. Saul was mad ill, I gained mad respect for the cat. During the lecture Saul began to talk about the struggle of the 60-70's compared to our generation. He began to say that the cats of that era's Pro-Blackness was neccesary at that time for us take on more Human issues of this day and age. He said James Brown said i'm Black and Proud so he didn't have to say, cuz He(Saul) IS THAT. He went to talk about more global issues and things. Someone in the crowd asked if he (as an artist) felt an obligation to the Black Liberation movement. He said he an obligation himself first. He said that he had argument about this wit' Amiri Baraka who said, you must be in an organization to be a Revolutionary, Saul said you must organize your damn self before organize other people. He then explained how we find a common humanity beyond race, gender, sexuality ect., he said that is our movement not a primarily black struggle but a more human struggle. He then criticized the 60-70's movement for being positive but very Homophobic and Sexist and centered upon the Black Man. He then talked about a workshop he had with Amiri who called a woman lost feeling like she had to deal with ther gender and sexuality as lesbian before she deals with her race. Amiri said, "in their eyes you'll always be black first." Saul said '"no Amiri you're lost as long you're concered with what you are in their eyes!" At this point an elder woman in the crowd jumped up and said your disrespeeting an elder and began a 10 minute tirade on Saul that ended in the woman being removed from the auditorium, She called him disrespectful, demanded he contribute whatver he got paid to speak that night to the reparations movement. Saul handled it mad well, he was caught mad off guard, the crowd was stunned. Anyway i was talking to an elder who there wit' me afterwards and he felt he dead wrong for doing that, he said "The Elders can't antagonize the youth!"
I say all of that to raise several questions... 1)Are Black artists obligated to a Black movement or a Human movement? 2)Should the Elders step out of leadership positions they've been holding since the 60-70's and let younger blood with new ideas take riegns. 3)Was Saul wrong?(Based on the limited info i gave you) 4)Is it wrong to point out the mistakes of the elders? 5)How can Hip-Hop generation continue to make progressive change?