Man oh Man.

What a way to summarize Black Music Month 2016.

If anyone had the chance to watch the 2016 BET Awards, on a deal by those that can upstage Madonna in a sense of who can do a better tribute to Prince, yes I will admit, the BET Awards put their monies where the mouths are. Just admit it, they had to do it on their word. And yes, the main portions of the show was dedicated to Prince. Artists from The Roots, Bilal, Stevie Wonder, Janelle Monae (with the outfit that had her butt cheeks shown – HEY PRINCE DID IT 25 YEARS AGO!) and others all paid homage to the Purple Artist.

Of all the artists whom paid homage to Prince the most to me I would think that would belong to Shelia E. Her mixes from HouseQuake to A Love Bizzare were definitely on point. Even Mayte made an appearance along with Jerome Benton. If that mix didn’t do justice I don’t know what will. And the look on Sheila’s face says it all toward the end. It was a job that had to be done. And a job done well that the group did. Hope Prince is happy. Now they  need to take that craft and continue to generate new artists that can follow that MPLS and Midwestern sound that Prince laid out in the beginning.

Another highlight of the event: Jesse Williams winning the BET Humanitarian Award.

If anyone had NOT had a chance to hear what Jesse said, I’m sorry to say that it was a MUST HEAR SPEECH! It was probably that MUST HEAR SPEECH that every single one of had to listen. Why? because it was the truth. And apparently he got some folks mad after what he said. You know what,let them be mad. Let them get pissed.

Here is the full context of the speech straight out of Time.com:

Peace peace. Thank you, Debra. Thank you, BET. Thank you Nate Parker, Harry and Debbie Allen for participating in that .

Before we get into it, I just want to say I brought my parents out tonight. I just want to thank them for being here, for teaching me to focus on comprehension over career, and that they make sure I learn what the schools were afraid to teach us. And also thank my amazing wife for changing my life.

Now, this award – this is not for me. This is for the real organizers all over the country – the activists, the civil rights attorneys, the struggling parents, the families, the teachers, the students that are realizing that a system built to divide and impoverish and destroy us cannot stand if we do.

It’s kind of basic mathematics – the more we learn about who we are and how we got here, the more we will mobilize.

Now, this is also in particular for the black women in particular who have spent their lifetimes dedicated to nurturing everyone before themselves. We can and will do better for you.

Now, what we’ve been doing is looking at the data and we know that police somehow manage to deescalate, disarm and not kill white people everyday. So what’s going to happen is we are going to have equal rights and justice in our own country or we will restructure their function and ours.

Now… I got more y’all – yesterday would have been young Tamir Rice’s 14th birthday so I don’t want to hear anymore about how far we’ve come when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on 12 year old playing alone in the park in broad daylight, killing him on television and then going home to make a sandwich. Tell Rekia Boyd how it’s so much better than it is to live in 2012 than it is to live in 1612 or 1712. Tell that to Eric Garner. Tell that to Sandra Bland. Tell that to Dorian Hunt.

Now the thing is, though, all of us in here getting money – that alone isn’t gonna stop this. Alright, now dedicating our lives, dedicating our lives to getting money just to give it right back for someone’s brand on our body when we spent centuries praying with brands on our bodies, and now we pray to get paid for brands on our bodies.

There has been no war that we have not fought and died on the front lines of. There has been no job we haven’t done. There is no tax they haven’t leveed against us – and we’ve paid all of them. But freedom is somehow always conditional here. “You’re free,” they keep telling us. But she would have been alive if she hadn’t acted so… free.

Now, freedom is always coming in the hereafter, but you know what, though, the hereafter is a hustle. We want it now.

And let’s get a couple things straight, just a little sidenote – the burden of the brutalized is not to comfort the bystander.That’s not our job, alright – stop with all that. If you have a critique for the resistance, for our resistance, then you better have an established record of critique of our oppression. If you have no interest, if you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions to those who do. Sit down.

We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold, ghettoizing and demeaning our creations then stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit. The thing is though… the thing is that just because we’re magic doesn’t mean we’re not real.

Thank you.

I’ll bet many have probably said the same thing. But couldn’t get it out. But Jesse Williams did. And I’m glad that he said the words he said. You can call it powerful, real talk, on point, whatever. The fact of the matter is, it is happening. It’s not just denial. In the words of my former pastor, “they know its the truth, but they just don’t want to hear it!”

Speaking of that: of  course there are some “haters” that had to clap back with denial or anguish. Like Stacey Dash whom wished the death of BET and Black History Month back in January. Didn’t work Stacey! You have been exposed. If she hated BET or anything that pertains to African-Americans, why was she getting paid BACK THEN? And this millennial Tomi Lahren, she had to “clapback” about what Jesse said and having the gaul to call the BET Awards racist. LITTLE GIRL: GO TO YOUR ROOM AND SIT DOWN! She is a non factor trying to be paid like the likes of Glenn Beck on his Blaze TV  Program or whatever. She knows nothing! All it is, she is being played to say the things she does. She already got the Donkey of the Day by The Breakfast Club anyway.

CALLOUT: Should Stacey Dash and Tomi Lahren should have that “Come to Jesus Meeting” after all? My case is yes! And many of those like them and we know who they are better have those tickets punched for those seats! And this goes for those black men and white men who got mad after what Jesse Williams said also. If those men ACTUALLY got the balls to say what he said, in public, or on a Black Network, then why they mad? Even they need to go in the corner and SIT DOWN!

Or in this case: sit down and shut up!

Yes it was powerful. Straight up.

And a sidenote: the BET Awards also acknowledged one of my hometown residents Marcus Duke out of Milwaukee. He is the owner of ClubKids414 and has great things for the city in terms of Milwaukee’s youth and kids. If those have not checked this out, please do so.

 

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