Hip Hop and it’s influence on gang violence in America


It started from the days of superior Hip Hop groups containing influential leaders possibly more powerful than any law enforcement official, Public Enemy, NWA, Dipset, and the list goes on. It seems as if the early dream to teach children to standup against wrongful police violence has finally come back to bite our early talented philosophers in the ass.

Gang violence has become widespread throughout the fifty states and in some, you don’t need to watch gangland to see it for yourself. Growing up in Harlem, its become easily relevant to understand why everyone out here wants to bang some type of red, Dipset. It’s a child’s dream to idolize someone at some point in life, most children out here grow up without father figures, so they jump to the next male figure they want to imitate, and in this case it’s possibly the most outspoken rappers in all of hip hop. Jim used to be seen locally on the corner of 116th or 115th and lenox, Cam used to ball in the back of 145th street park and is a regular on 140th and lenox alongside Max B, and Juelz would always be found somewhere up the block on Amsterdam or Broadway. With that being said, you’ve seen the videos, the blood gang affiliation even if they are fake gangsters to a certain degree, but how do you think they affect the kid going to the store who sees them and receives some sort of dap or Harlem love? It’s almost a sure thing that a fatherless child will be involved in gang violence by the time they are 14, simply because when you don’t receive love from the one who helped make you, the streets will always be there to pick up where he left off. What these children aren’t being taught at a young age is that, the streets doesn’t have a heart. Gang members turn on their own family members at times, and this is something seen all over the map.

Hip Hop has an effect on our younger generation that possibly no parent can match at this day and age. Hip Hop Icons such as Lupe Fiasco and Nas are publicly outspoken in regards to how the state controls what these labels put out on airwaves and videos. Perfect example, YouTube showed no fear in blocking The Game’s R.E.D video due to ridiculous amounts of gang affiliation and I don’t blame them, but why is no one asking why the label signed off on the production of this video, knowing millions of kids are just going to watch and imitate? Generally the problem starts at the head of a corporation, if labels really cared about the generation on the uprise, most hip hop videos would fail to hit production. After all, children or teenagers are still people with access to buy CDs at your local record store or best buy. I don’t remember being told I needed to be 18 to buy The Eminem Show when I was in jr high. So in essence, labels are using these African-Americans as test dummies to generate money and lead to destruction in urban neighborhoods. Yet what baffles me is how the Nigga Nation channel, B.E.T never blocks viewing of these gang affiliated videos(lord knows hell will freeze over before they block a Lil Wayne video), but blocked a Keri Hilson video out of all people for sexual related reference. So are we saying that we’d rather prohibit sex than gang violence nationwide?

The most disappointing feature of this to me is that children aren’t being swayed away. Often influenced by stories of rappers shooting someone, smoking weed in the court room, and doing X, Y, and Z with some bitch then passing her to your mans, hip hop is definitely winning. In more negative ways than possible, because a child dies every day from gang violence. Yet we don’t hear the unreleased songs our most beloved rappers put out in relation to this.

Anyone can be a follower in life, and followers are the most disloyal, like the 12 disciples Jesus had. Its time for children, teens, and everyone else to stand up and become leaders. If you wouldn’t listen to your own father, why go join a gang to listen to the next man tell you what to do and when to do it, you might as well volunteer for a jail sentence because that’s the only thing in your future. In closing I’m curious just how many of you believe that hip hop is the leading cause of gang violence, please vote on the poll below:

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6 thoughts on “Hip Hop and it’s influence on gang violence in America

  1. It’s a tough call on where the finger should be pointed. Hip-hop artists that depict these things certainly are imitated by children, but It starts with the family issues at the core. The expressions of hip-hop, and all music for that matter, is largely an artistic depiction of societal themes. In this case, those themes tend to be how those fatherless children themselves turned to the streets (and in the case of some, made it big). Media imitation is a hot button topic now-a-days, and while I do not agree with all the things depicted by these artists, I can’t bring myself to fully call for regulation. Free will is a beautiful demon for sure, but there are larger problems to be assessed behind the artists.

  2. I blame parents, they’re the ones who should be teaching their kids not to follow everything they see or hear on television or the internet. Just think Scarface is the average hood nigga favorite movie, that movie isn’t really something to look up to but niggas do. Its the fascination of getting rich easily or quickest way as possible, why most niggas wanna ball, rap or slang coke.

    Overall most of the hip hop community are followers and swagger jackers. No one was saying no homo until Cam said, no one was rocking dreads till Wayne shit grew out, swag is the most overused word in hip hop today. Niggas forgot about originality.

  3. Blaming hip hop like blaming video games for violence. Eveyone knows the elements of society, nothing can brainwash you into doing anything you were tempted to do from jump. I think parents have to step in and get their kids out the streets but most parents today around the same age as their kid so they just as bad of a influence. With that said, we need more positive music in the forefront , great read by the way .

  4. Hip Hop markets it and profits off of it along with televison and movies. We the ones that support it, once we stop support this negative aspect of our culture it will die.

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