Memphis, Tennessee–Following the news of rapper Young Dolph’s death in his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee, simply writing a post about the death of another rapper would not be adequate. There are apparent, pressing issues in our community that we continue to ignore–which is the role that negative rap plays in the never ending cycle of inner city violence.
“Memphis Police said in a release Thursday afternoon the man found shot on the floor just before 12:30 p.m. inside Makeda’s Cookies in the 2300 block of Airways has been positively identified as Adolph Robert Thorntown Jr., “Young Dolph.” The 36-year-old died at the scene.
Investigators said video showed the two suspects get out of a white two-door Mercedes Benz armed with guns. They approached Young Dolph inside the store and shot him several times, then took off. Investigators have not said what led to the shooting. Anyone with information is asked to call Memphis Crime Stoppers at 901-528-CASH.”
What do you think is being played on the radio, when people are on their way to do drive-by’s and other illicit crimes? It definitely isn’t bach. It is rap music with death omens spoken over beats by some of our favorite rappers. How many rappers have been killed in the last few years? From Pop Smoke to Nipsey Hussle. To Mo3, who was chased and gunned down in broad daylight on a freeway–to now Young Dolph who was preparing a turkey giveaway in his community.
This is not to say that these rappers were indicrectly responsible for their own demise. May the dead rest in peace. It is more of an open letter to rappers who are alive, that make RIP posts, but the next day, are back in the studio rapping nonsense over “dope beats.”
How long are we going to say in our community, “yea they are not talking about nothing but I like the beat.” How is a beat acceptable for continuous negative messages that perpetuate cycles of death and violence?
Are we not tired of some of our brightest and polarizing Black men from our inner cities being gunned down in their communities and their genius abruptly snatched from the world? What about their families and the generational trauma that murders inflict upon loved ones? With the continuous murders of Black rappers, I hope that we take the time to really address these issues that have our communities in arrested development.
Black rapper’s lives matter too. My condolences to the family of Young Dolph.