Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Forsaken City

The culture of deceit rises high 
High enough to touch the grimy sky 
Filled with the cries of the forsaken, the forgotten, the cursed 
Misery coats the city streets with greed and depression 
The people no longer care 
Numb to any positive light that might shine upon them 
Beautiful people 
Masked by the ugliness of the environment that preys upon their sanity 
Forsaken, defeated, trampled by the rising cost of living 
The lights struggle to stay lit 
The water comes out in chunks 
The leaders of the city are but figureheads with a status 
They don’t know the struggle of the people 
Or they do but do they really care 
As long as they can sit fat at the table of success 
No one else in the city matters a bit 
So the crime rises and takes hold 
The drugs become bold and strangle the life out of the youth 
Good friends turn to enemies 
And the people forget their own kind 
They just exist, not truly living 
Working but not succeeding 
Liking but not loving 

Tony L. Jefferson, Jr. 2009

Willie Lynch letter: The Making of a Slave

This speech was said to have been delivered by Willie Lynch on the bank of the James River in the colony of Virginia in 1712.  Lynch was a British slave owner in the West Indies. He was invited to the colony of Virginia in 1712 to teach his cruel and unusual methods to slave owners there.

Willie Lynch letter: The Making of a Slave

Friday, February 15, 2013

Hip Hop is Dead and there is no Rebirth

It is a sad state of affairs when the art of music becomes the art of destruction. A nice beat and thought provoking lyrics use to be the cornerstone of Hip Hop, now we have nice beats hijacked by terrible lyrics that shine a negative light on us. In public I am a fairly young man, some would say highly intelligent and of good moral standing. What is seen, however, is a thug who’s English is terrible, pants must be sagging, probably going to steal or kill, militant black person, whose sole objective is to mooch from the Government and spread an agenda of violence and depression.  When I listen to some of the hip-hop of today and see the videos accompanying them, while some are entertaining most seem as if no intelligent thought went into it. What’s worse is it’s destroying young minds making them think that the garbage peddled in these videos and music is what’s right in the world. 
 What happened to rappers taking a stand, being socially conscious, having intelligent lyrics backed by a nice beat, creating a rhythm that moves a people onto a positive path? I’m ashamed to go in public as a black man, for fear of being labeled as a young degenerate and it’s all because of this destructive blasphemy called Hip Hop today. This isn't hip hop it is ashes of a former greatness being mixed with the dirt of irrelevance. Nas was right when he said Hip Hop is Dead, it is dead and there is no rebirth. Glorifying the hood, drugs and the like isn't representative of actual hood life because we want to get as far away from that life as possible. 
 Being a product of poverty, hood, ghetto and street, the influence was around, the songs they so thoughtlessly produce is a reality we strive to get away from, well some of us at least. We shouldn't want our image in the world to be what is portrayed in those songs. As if we needed anything else to make life harder, producing crap and calling it music and branding it as Black Culture isn't the right way to go about things.  
 I’m focusing on the hip hop community, but there are many instances where we purposely misrepresent ourselves in public. We act exactly the way they want us to like puppets in a bad play. We shuck and jive for a few pennies and go to sleep soundly at night. We don’t think of the young, impressionable minds we've just destroyed. We make a dangerous drug like “Molly” seems like the cool thing to do, when in reality that little pill contains the purest form of ecstasy (MDMA) among other things like cocaine, heroin and etc. We make the act of sagging seem cool when in reality it comes from the prison culture of sexual invitation. 
 As a lover of music, I am asking for Hip Hop to do better. You were the torch bearer for many in the younger generation until your socially conscious words turned into mainstream garbage. You've infected this new generation with drug abuse, disrespect, and no self-respect. We want a rebirth, but until the music gets better you’ll remain dead to many and buried into a troubled and bottomless grave of irrelevance. 
 Save Hip Hop! 

Tony L. Jefferson, Jr. 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Commercialized Love

Should I buy you the candy chocolate and sweets, maybe a big balloon and a dozen roses? I guess the Love we show daily isn't enough for ole Saint Valentine; he wants to buy, sell and market our guilt. The guilt some feel if they haven't loved enough, the guilt of a cheater, the guilt of an abuser or the guilt of an absent lover.  
 Money can't buy love it only buys you a day of bliss and the sting of betrayal at that goodbye kiss. 
My Love gets to stay forever, not temporarily on one day. I get to see the highs and lows of one instead of dealing with many.  
 Commercialized love is not real love, real love can never be duplicated. Real love is a mother’s touch, a father guiding hand, a wife’s commitment, a husband’s sacrifice, a girlfriend’s promise, and a boyfriend's care. Real love lasts a lifetime, no special days needed, it grows, blossoms and matures. 
 Valentine’s Day isn't an evil day, it’s for those who don’t understand love, it’s for those temporary couples, that transient love, the love that lasts a month maybe and not 50 golden years or more. Valentine’s Day is a day to explore if you truly love the person you're with, to see if they have the potential. So it is good for something, but there isn't a need to go waste huge sums of money, the love you show daily builds from yesterday, there is no peak with love, there are mountains to climb and valleys to climb out of. 
 So if you haven’t started that real love, today is a good day to start. Break away from Commercialized love and step into Real Love. 
 Oh and Happy Valentine’s Day 

Tony L. Jefferson, Jr. 2013

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Continue a Legacy

“Death is not finite, it is but a continuation of life” ~Tony Jefferson, Jr. ~

I realized something while being a part of my Grandmas funeral, I can still feel her alive in my heart and she continues to live through all of her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. For years I never truly understood death and I suppose no one ever will, but the thing I gained from this experience is that death is not the finality of life, its life amplified depending on the legacy you left behind. Grandma or “Madear” as she was affectionately called left a huge legacy and it is up to the living to continue that legacy. 
 Mourning is a natural part of life and we will mourn our loved ones when they leave the earthly realm, but if we want to honor them, we must celebrate shortly and live abundantly. Funerals are a celebration of a life lived not of the ending. As the living loved ones continue to dwell on the earth, it is our duty to better ourselves and continue and strengthen the legacy left behind for us. A legacy is never complete, it is a book filled with many chapters, let your chapter of the legacy be the best reflection of you as best as you can make it. 
 Before your chapter ends on earth and begins in another time, make sure you build a good chapter to a legacy, carving your own niche in the ever expanding Tree of Life. Make your particular branch fruitful and fulfilling.  

Tony L. Jefferson, Jr. 2013

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

After The Storm

The road is not always paved with diamonds and gold, but at the end of a long journey on rocky roads, you tend to sometimes reach a goal. After the rains have passed and the sun is shining brightly once again, not a cloud in the sky can ruin the light. As we come to certain junctures in life, certain forks in the road, we know we have options, we have choices to make about how we want to live and how we want to continue after loss or fail. We don't always win, but even in our loss we see glimmers of hope breaking through like sun rays through the clouds. 
 Our time on Earth is short and precious, but when God calls us home it's our time to go, we have completed our goals and if we are blessed enough our legacy will echo in the walls of time. The storm left behind after a loved one dies isn't refreshing, it isn't comforting, it isn't renewing. It's painful, with stinging rain and loud thunder the freezing cold chills you numbing what once loved, dampening your soul as the heartless pools of sorrow puddle around your heart. 
 We find salvation in our own ways, mine was when the sun parted the clouds on a dreary day filled with fog and slight rain when another soul entered heaven's realm. We find peace in not necessarily by knowing, but by feeling. It's a feeling you feel that lets you know that all is good, not knowing if it is in reality. Love heals all but sometimes we reject it because it hurts to try it again, but we know we must in order to feel normal. It's all about feelings. 
 Feelings are the one true emotion, all of the words and emotions combined into one true form. After the storm after all of the rain has passed, the sun shall shine again. 
 Death isn't the end, it's the beginning of another life. 

Tony L. Jefferson, Jr. 2013