Happy Born Day Tupac Amaru Shakur
Let me get it out of the way: I wasn’t the biggest fan of Pac’s music. I am the dude who loved “Me Against the World” but didn’t feel “All Eyez on Me.” Despite this, I really appreciated Tupac as a thinker and Hip-Hop icon. He really pressed the limits of our understanding of Black Power, urban decay, and the voices of the youth. While so many glomed onto his Thug Life persona, they missed his deeper analysis and critique of social conditions, generational divides, and his raw honesty.
I have said before and will say again, Tupac was a living metaphor for the Black man in America. Brilliant and Ignorant. Powerless and Powerful. Loving and Abused. Oppressed and Oppressor. Tragedy and Triumph in real time. To many, Pac’s approach was hypocritical, dissonant, even schizo. But if you listened with love, then you understood Pac was truly the rose from concrete. There was/is much to be learned from our brother Tupac Amaru Shakur.
Beneath is a video of one of Pac’s speeches at the Atlanta banquet of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. Free the Land! Rest in Power and thank you for your honesty and the lessons that you’ve left behind Pac.