In his weekly column, rapper John Brown'the self-proclaimed "King Of Da Burbz"'will be offering his insight into politics and current events to the Complex readers. Check out "Politickin With John Brown" every Thursday.
As the American Dream is undergoing triple-bypass surgery, it feels like some things slipped off our cultural calendar. Take for example "Black History Month". Yes, it's a largely superficial commemoration that suspiciously runs during the year's shortest month. But this is the first year it seemed noticeably absent in the national dialogue. So in the words of KRS-ONE, "Why is that?"
#5: CELEBRITIES HAVE BEEN HOGGING ALL THE ATTENTION
Phelps definitely set it off at the top of the month. But damn, Chris Brown and A-Rod really hit it out of the park in terms of sensationalized publicity. Uplifting biographical profiles are hot, just not "hot hot".
#4: THE FINANCIAL CRISIS
Maybe it was the $41 billion deficit in Cali or the $787 billion "let's-get-it-started-in-here" package that had our collective attention occupied. Perhaps when we're secure about having a future we'll spend more time reflecting on the past.
#3: THE MEDIA IS HATING
Between the recent disturbingly racist NY Post cartoon and Rush Limbaugh's continuous evil calls for Obama's failure, it's quite possible that the Rupert Murdochs are hoping to ignore and eventually bury "Black History Month" altogether. They're still bitter over the election.
#2: THE FIRST AFRICAN-AMERICAN RNC CHAIRMAN
You know things done changed when the chairman of the RNC is talking about how the GOP PR campaign will be "off the hook" as they target "urban-suburban hip-hop settings", while referring to the stimulus plan as money for "bling-bling". Totally surreal and awkward? Yes. Genuine cultural progress? Not so much.
#1: MY PRESIDENT IS BLACK
Now I'm not saying that Obama's victory makes Black History Month any less significant for a nation understanding its identity. But, it's safe to say that Barack made history, not just black history. And that lasts more than a month.