Third Eye Opened.

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Growing up in North Philadelphia, music was essential in the Glover household – during the week, my father would play everything from Stevie Wonder to Gil Scott Heron. Saturday nights and Sunday mornings, my mother saturated the walls with gospel music. I loved all of it, music got us through many tough days. Even with my father’s passing in 1992, songs that he would play over and over seemed to carry more significance–almost a message that we couldn’t understand prior.

Rap music and hip-hop has always been in my life, it made me laugh, it made me dance, it gave me my B-Boy stance, it made me a beatbox king in Junior High School, and it gave me a crew.

Upon hearing Public Enemy in 1987 – rap music gave me a purpose.

Public Enemy made me angry, by making me conscious of “the system” designed against us, most of all Public Enemy made me think. At 15 years old, in what I now call my “definitive years”, prayers and Chuck D kept me on the straight and narrow.

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Yo! Bum Rush The Show was P.E.’s first album, unbeknownst to many at the time of release many wanted the album banned for its content. Yo!, was part street education(Sophisticated B**ch, Too Much, Posse, Megablast) part Black Panther Party meeting(You’re Gonna Get Yours, Rightstarter, Raise the Roof). With just enough political rebellion to jump start my untapped militant consciousness.

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It Takes A Nation of Millions To Hold Us Back is the Autobiography of Malcolm X on wax, no book(other than the Bible) has had a greater impact on my life. And the album was having the same effect. Countless times I’ve listened to the album and it turned into a research project. Rebel Without A Pause gave me insight into Joanne Chesimard (Assata Shakur) and later the Soledad Brothers. Allowing myself to be absorbed into the music led to an endless wave of knowledge that opened up a whole new world of consciousness that I found to be priceless. Don’t Believe the Hype allowed me to see how the media can control the masses, in Caught, Can We Get a Witness? Chuck defends the accusations of sampling music. My personal favorite is Black Steel In The Hour of Chaos, where Chuck D gives his insight why NO Black man or woman owes Amerikkka anything in the form of military service.

Show ‘Em Watcha Got, is a role call to our great leaders and innovators (more research). It Takes A Nation, was the elixir that I needed to consume in order to gain knowledge of self, remove the slave mentality and use my third eye.

It is easily the greatest rap album ever and one of the most important albums ever made.

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If It Takes A Nation of Millions, gave me consciousness, Fear of a Black Planet gave me my social swagger. It gave me the confidence to walk into a room, knowing that equipped with a sense of knowledge I was a feared young man. The beauty of Fear of a Black Planet openly acknowledged that “every brotha ain’t a brotha” (i.e. Jason Whitlock), it talks about how “some of us would rather switch than fight”. It puts us all on guard letting us know that some of the devils we will encounter look just like us. At the end of the album Fight the Power reminds us that we’re fighting the same battle.

P.E. albums all carry significance, but it is these three that changed the way I see the world. Yo! Bum Rush The Show lured me away from the streets and showed me where I stood in this country’s social makeup. It Takes A Nation of Millions put me in the classroom and taught me to think outside the box and read in between the lines. Fear of a Black Planet was like a graduation from the first two albums. Giving me the courage, willpower and confidence to meet the freedom oppressor head on. It wasn’t always the music, at times it watching Chuck D in an interview speak with the baritone voice that knew no fear only redemption. One image that I’ll always remember is on the inside flap of It Takes a Nation of Millions – the entire P.E. crew was in a jail cell standing on top of the Amerikkkan flag (see opening photo). That image made me a believer.

The next time you read a Jason Whitlock column claming the ills of the world on hip-hip point him in my direction

It’s no mistake that 20 years later Public Enemy is still impacting lives, changing lives and most importantly – saving lives.

Brothas Are Definitely Gonna Work it Out!

41 Responses to “Third Eye Opened.”

  1. PE is too hold for me, but if Chuck D really believes that blacks shouldn’t join the military, he is no more than a elitist liberal minded idiot.

    Military service, excellent service, is one of the jobs that propelled blacks in this country into getting a better life for themself and providing them the means to further their education.

  2. Sportsdiva Says:

    I don’t think anybody should join our military personally and DMac you must’ve forgot about blacks fighting for a country where they weren’t even considered equal, fighting for a country then being forced to endure indignities like sitting at the back of the bus when they returned home, or fighting for a country and then coming home and being denied the benefits of being a veteran, especially housing after WWII that allowed the middle-class and the suburbs to exist and explode.
    You know the Ali quote about Vietnam….well, that says it all.

    He is far from an elitist or idiot I can assure you that.

  3. thebrotherreport Says:

    A better life at what cost? Lost limbs, not being able to cope with the horrors of what they’ve seen so they become dependent on alcohol or drugs. Unable to get a job? The military and Hollywood hardly acknowledges the existence of Blacks in any wars except Viet Nam. You never hear about how many Blacks died on the beaches of Normandy, Pearl Harbor, Iwo Jima, etc. Blacks came home and got the same treatment if not worse.

    As far as a means to further education you have to do a certain amount of time in active duty before that money becomes available, the G.I. Bill is a trap and waving a college education in your face is carrot on a string what do they give you $30,000? At the rate of the situation in Iraq the gov’t will be paying for your funeral before they pay for your education.

  4. Better to sit in the back of the bus in the US, than be a king in Africa.

    Blacks being here put them in the position to now, the most wealth among blacks in the world is held by the black in America.

    I really do not care what the adulter Ali has to say about anything, the US provided him with a means to earn the great living he had, and the least you could do is fight for your country. If someone invaded this place, they wouldn’t spare your dumbass because you are black, they would kill you because you are and American. If you don’t believe that ask the families of the black Americans who were killed on 9/11.

  5. thebrotherreport Says:

    If you want to know how the United States Military takes care of their own read about how Joe Louis donated his own money to the war effort, fought in exhibitions while overseas and in the end the IRS broke the man.

  6. David Mac…Uncle Ruckus Jr (no relation)

  7. @thebrotherreport

    A better life in that they have a stable job that provides set avenues for promotion, and gives them training and hands on experience in the job filed they are assigned to.
    If you think all soldiers are alcholic or drug addicts you need to stop watching Vietnam movies and step into reality, most soldiers are far from that. As for Hollywood, who cares they are there to make entertainment, if you want facts read a book.

    The G.I. bill isn’t a trap, it is a benefit to those who are enlistedmen, and provide them a way to increase their education. If you want to go to college, you have ROTC, which if you apply early enough or if you maintain an acceptable GPA, might grant you a scholarship to cover your school cost. So cut the crap and stop talking about things that you obviously do not know.

  8. thebrotherreport Says:

    “I really do not care what the adulter Ali has to say about anything, the US provided him with a means to earn the great living he had, and the least you could do is fight for your country”.

    When he came back from the Olympics with a gold medal, he couldn’t eat a burger in a damn soda shoppe.

    But I guess you’re thankful for the white man’s infinite mercy huh?

  9. @thebrotherreport

    Joe Louis was a simpleton. He could have contested the IRS, no relation to the military by the way, but he didn’t. He just paid what they said he owed, instead of standing up for himself. There is nothing admirable about stupidity.

  10. thebrotherreport Says:

    I have read books and during the Viet Nam Conflict 1/3 of the soldiers in combat had either used or experimented with some kind of drug. The G.I. bill is a trap for anyone at a financial disadvantage that wants to further their education. You name me someone that got the full benefit of that bill?

  11. thebrotherreport Says:

    I’m not relating it to the military. But it’s all intertwined. Bottom line he was ok as long as he was an asset to their cause.

    Were you ever in the military?

  12. DavidMac’s Mother, Father, Uncle, Sister, and Cousins have all benefitted from the G.I. Bill. My oldest sister benefitted from an ROTC scholarship. I currently benefit from my father’s service by being able to attend any college in the state of Alabama for free. Thats what the military has done in just my family, I know a great deal of other military families enlisted and officers that have benefitted education-wise from the military.

    As for the 30% figure I want to see a citation for that.

  13. DavidMac, you’ve allowed your privilege to cloud your judgement.

  14. Very nice piece, thebrotherreport.

  15. thebrotherreport Says:

    You can google that information.

  16. thebrotherreport Says:

    Good lookin Paul.

  17. PE, boy we could use Chuck’s wisdom now. This generation is completely lost. David M. is an idiot.

  18. “Better to sit in the back of the bus in the US, than be a king in Africa.”

    There it is in a nutshell! The more this dude talks, the more shit comes out.

    “DavidMac, you’ve allowed your privilege to cloud your judgement.”

    Paul, this is more than just privilege speaking, this is the elitism he accuses others of exhibiting. You know what DavidMac…you’re the fucking idiot and simpleton. The military back in your fathers time may have given your family an opportunity, kudos to them.

    The military is an abuser and user of young men and women. If you don’t or refuse to accept that, that is your outlook, I will respect that, I don’t have to like it.

    But you come here all hard core with your right wing Kneegrow bullshit dissing other who have had more social impact on people than you will ever have indicates your soul is dead and all that’s left is dumping your ass in a deep grave!

  19. Oooh….Damn brotha!

  20. thebrotherreport Says:

    I’ll bring the shovel!

  21. If DavidMac likes the military so much what’s he doing here with us. David they are giving out great bonuses, and there is plenty of work to do.

    It’s better to be in any part of the world dirt poor without the slightest possibility of financial success, than in a thriving economy living the life of an ignorant self loather.

  22. I’m serving the public as a contractor Johnny. ;) I should be going to Iraq next year for my job. What are you doing for your nation?

  23. DavidMac isn’t completely wrong on this, though he pisses the rest of you off.

    I too joined the military, grew up in the military, and have benefited from the GI Bill. Of course I had the good fortune to time my entry between the Gulf War and 9/11, so my 4 active were done, and my 4 inactive reserve years were coming off the books as 9/11 hit. Would I go in now? Probably not, because I’m no fan of lost causes and lost limbs, but it is a good place to start off at 17-18 yrs when you don’t have the money for school (or if you were too much of a procrastinator to blow off all the colleges sending you info).

    Both my wife and I have taken full advantage of the GI Bill, I just blew the last of mine last month. She’s a nurse now and I’m…. well, I work and pay the bills. Only reason I managed to get through school is because I was able to treat it as a part time job, as I got paid to go, otherwise I’d have quit years ago since I was already making enough to pay the bills. Kind of wanted my wife to be my sugar momma… she just won’t oblige.

    Does the military prey on the poor? of course, who else wants to throw away 4 yrs of their life? Sometimes though, you have to do shit you don’t like in order to escape situations you’re stuck in. I think that is where DavidMac is coming from. And while I was in, I met plenty of people doing the same thing.

    Doesn’t mean I agree with wars in Iraq, in fact I despise the way our government uses its soldiers. I don’t really want to get into all that. I don’t agree with all of his comments, but just because he has differing (wrong) opinions about 90% of his stuff doesn’t mean he’s always way off base.

  24. BTW, on the PE thing, that was a bit before my time, but I went back and picked up some of their albums recently. I came on to rap when my roomate (in Saudi, working off of previous post) introduced me to Wu Tang in 96… so I’ve had to go back in fill in my collection with the ‘classics’ as time has gone on.

  25. thebrotherreport Says:

    As far as the Wu-Tang Clan goes grab the early work, Enter the 36 Chambers came out I believe in 1993, Only Built for Cuban Linx, Ironman, Liquid Swords, Tical, Return to the 36 Chambers and others alot of their later work you have to scan through the album to find that original hunger that they had back in the early days but I’ll still listen to them more than I would alot of music that is out now.

  26. I wouldn’t join the military, but I think it’s the best solution for some people.

    But, the idea that living in America under any circumstances is better than living well in Africa is so stupid it should have gotten David Mac banned. Seriously, that is one of most disturbing comments I’ve ever heard from a black person who claims to be intelligent.

  27. Brother-

    Trust me when I say you don’t have to break down Wu to me. I may have joined the game a bit late, but I had money when I came back from the desert, and it didn’t take long for me to get it all hooked up. ’97 was when Forever came out, so I came in on the first wave, albeit late.

    Plus I think Enter the 36 Chambers is the best rap album ever… but it was my first rap love… you always remember your first? Anyway you’re right with the hunger, they actually sounded physically hungry on 36 chambers, and not so much on Forever on, but whatever, seems to happen with most musicians. First albums tend to be more raw, later albums generally more musically proficient, but without that same edge. There are plenty of exceptions, I’m dealing in generalities.

  28. thebrotherreport Says:

    Allen,

    I agree 100%. I’m done on this one. Just like Chuck said, “Every brotha ain’t a brotha”.

  29. Sportsdiva Says:

    ‘Only Built for Cuban Linx’ is such a classic, I’m still waiting for the OBFCL II (with some production from the good Dr.) which keeps getting delayed.

    Damn DMac a dumbass?? That was unecessary.

    And the statement about being in Africa was sad and scary.

    There are some pivotal points in history that could’ve exhibited the 80/20 rule where you get a major outcome from a minor input and these critical moments could’ve done a great deal to rectify the wealth gap that resulted from govt sanctioned slavery and jim crow. The veteran benefits that existed in a booming post WWII economy could’ve put so many more people of color in a better economic situation. Instead we got discriminatory practices and redlining strategies that reinforced the status quo. Sure it’s a good option for some, but overall it follows the same pattern of sickness that invades every instituion that makes up this oligarchy.

    I am more than my so-called nation, but I am trying to stop it from crippling the world as it’s empire inevitably crumbles.

  30. Why should I be banned for what I said about Africa. Look at the North West coast line of Africa. There are no stable, economically prosperous countries there, and that is all because of the people there. I’m sure some of you must think that is the white man’s fault, but talking to a great deal of my Nigerian born and raised professors, they said a lot of the problem is not because of whites but the people there.

    Leaving that subject, can you tell me brotherreport what you are doing for the country, in which you enjoy all these rights?

  31. thebrotherreport Says:

    Other than pay taxes that fund the military in the search for weapons of mass destruction, I’m mentoring the young Black youth not to fall victim to the tricknology that no one warned you about.

  32. I’ll pray for those kids.

  33. thebrotherreport Says:

    And I’ll pray for yours.

  34. GMP

    I too have a military background. I fell in a shituation where survival necessitated me putting my rebel soul off to the side and considered taking care of my family. As a student of military and warfare in general, I understand what the military gives a young person in the way of discipline and concurent training.

    I have often suggested that in loo of African organization lacking the proper structure to create a manhood/womanhood training program for the youth, that they join the cadets or at most the reserves. I stop short of suggesting they go reg force.

    This thing about defending your country is a crap shoot, if you overstand that oldmen and politicians start wars and then send young men to die in those theaters.

    The fact that DavidMac would through out these anti-African statement is what’s making even Boney palatable. At least sometimes Boney seems to make an honest attempt at dialogue. This dude however is BITTER!

    A bit of my-story for all these edumacated Nigerian professors that DavidMac cites. Just like here in America Inc. there are anti-Africans from Africa, who would go out of their way to blame the victims than see the colonialism and neo-colonialism currently practiced by everyone as they scramble for African…..again!

    His only response to thebrotherreport is “I’ll pray for those kids” is indicative of his dis-connection from reality. Not even faint praise or better still say nothing, just bitterness.

    I would offer to school you son on my-story and his-story, including why you act like a N***er, but……

    He who knows not, and knows not that he knows not Is a fool—shun him.
    He who knows not, and knows that he knows not Is a child—teach him.
    He who knows, and knows not that he knows, Is asleep—wake him.
    He who knows, and knows that he knows, Is a wise man—follow him.

    I wonder which category DavidMac falls in? I’ll give you a hint…THE FIRST ONE!

  35. thebrotherreport Says:

    Sankofa – Don’t waste anymore energy on this guy.

  36. David,

    Serving the public as a contractor is not the same thing as military service. You were hyping up the military like it’s this great thing, if I thought it was that great, I would join.

    As for what i’m doing for my nation plenty, even more so I’m doing plenty for the whole world. I try not to limit the confines of my service and goodwill to arbitrary geographical boundaries.

    So once again David why have you chosen the life of a contractor over that of the military which you think is so great for other people. I’d really like to know why you advocate military life for other brothers, but contracting for yourself.

  37. D-Wac says

    “Joe Louis was a simpleton.”

    Talk about irony.

  38. Sankofa-

    I’m with you on pretty much all of that as well, especially the ‘I fell in a shituation where survival necessitated me putting my rebel soul off to the side’. People say ‘I could never join and be told what to do all the time’…. you’d be amazed what you can put up with when your options are limited.

    And yeah, I’m fully on board with you on the politicians using troops to further their agendas. I now live in the bible belt, and love how people like my asshole super conservative republican neighbor tell me they support the troops and ‘isn’t Bush a great president’. To me supporting the troops and supporting Bush are opposite sides of the spectrum.

    Also, being a contractor overseas is exactly the people that are using the system for profit, they aren’t helping the country. When I was over there (Saudi) making 12k a year (albeit in a time of peace, I shouldn’t bitch too much) watching contractors making 5x (at least) tax free, when basically you are there to protect them… that’s sort of jacked. And I say that even though my dad was working over there at the time as a civilian, and I work for a company with a heavy influence over there. So don’t tell me you’re serving the country or some shit because you’re a contractor… you’re serving yourself and your family.

    Would I take the 100k+ with a portion of that tax free to work in the middle east? It isn’t out of the realm of possibility, but I wouldn’t label myself a protector of the country, I’d call myself a sellout for the money.

  39. yeah I’m serving myself. Hey like my parents say, the military isn’t for everyone, but I’m not going to knock it, like the majority of you all seem to be doing.

    As for serving the nation, hopefully one day in the future, I’ll get a job for one of the alphabet agencies, but this helps me get my experience.

  40. Truth is consistant dispite opinions!

  41. nec trade shows…

    [...]Third Eye Opened. « The Starting Five[...]…

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