Rap Decoded by the Overthinker
Apparently, the “rapper-slash-actor, more powerful than two Cleopatra’s” did the unthinkable. Lauryn Hill declined an invitation from talk show giant Oprah Winfrey. The media herald attempted to reach out to L. Boogie for OWN’s “Next Chapter” and was unsuccessful. Of course, this is not news fans wanted to hear. Twitter went rampant, blogs painted the headlines in red….But, why do we care that Lauryn Hill said no to Oprah?
Culture is a funny thing. Hip Hop culture and Black culture are somewhat joined at the hip. We often become ethnocentric by failing to accept certain behaviors within our culture; in which, we deem unacceptable by our own internalized ideas of culture. Hip Hop culture and Black culture, alike.
Oprah, a name in entertainment synonymous with previous show guests: 50 Cent, Jay-Z and Kanye West. A talented, revered member of Black Culture. Created a direct, media relationship between Black culture and Hip Hop culture and a modeled behavior we have learned to accept.
I too was shocked by Lauryn’s decision to bypass Oprah. “She must have had a really good reason…I mean it’s Oprah!” Was the sentence that began playing in my head. But, what if she didn’t? Why should she need a good reason to decline an invitation…? After all, it was Lauryn’s invitation followed by her decision…
It was not that Lauryn Hill said no to appear on OWN’s “Next Chapter.” It’s that Lauryn Hill said no to Oprah. An unacceptable behavior that forced a separation in Black culture and Hip Hop culture; that is, a joint pain in our side (…earlier I said Black culture and Hip Hop culture are joined at the hip…eh, eh? Forget it).
Ultimately, it’s easier to accept behavior from another culture than within your culture.
If Taylor Swift declined an invitation by Ms. O, would Hip Hop care?