(minus the slanguage part because I’m a terrible sketch page engineer)
How much of the blame for cultural appropriation falls on the creators of the culture? Is it up to the givers to recognize a person/people as mostly takers? If they are recognized, should the creators allow their culture to be exposed to the takers? Is that a form of discrimination fueled by self-preservation? I feel all forms of creativity come from the same pool, and an individual or group’s circumstances determine how that creativity manifests itself in this physical world. Why are certain groups of people better conduits for this flow of creativity than others? If you take these creations and dilute them so other less creative, unimaginative people can consume them, are you going against some universal law? Is your punishment for breaking down and capsuling your creations — so others can swallow the metaphorical pill with more ease — the possible appropriation and abuse that follows? Do you have the right to complain about thieves and the misuse of intellectual property when you don’t cherish and respect what you feel has been stolen from you? I was listening to Beats, Rhymes and Life (in the whip, on repeat) about 2 weeks ago. Odd that it was prior to the passing of Phife. RIP. But, Get A Hold is one of my favorite tracks off the album. Q-Tip is one of the unsung kings of slanguage. In my opinion, he spits some rather straight to the point, “I’m gonna say this so you don’t miss it” lyrics on that particular track. BUT, I also feel that if you aren’t from or can’t relate to the environment that spawned the emotions and ideas that those lyrics came from, a lot of the shit he is saying would probably go over your head. A person may not even be able to understand what he is saying, textually. And if they do, they might not have any idea what the fuck it really means. “We slim with disabilities and thick with possibilities”. There’s a 50 year old man who sells John Deer mowers who might not be able to decipher that lyric. But now it can be googled. We have break-dancing and twerk classes. We have graffiti tutorials and college courses on 2Pac. Once you monetize your ideas, abilities and output, how strong is your claim of appropriation? In this “sorta” advanced technological age, are we witnessing the true birth of global collective consciousness (culturally speaking) — where everybody can experience almost any and every thing, together? Where you can pick and choose what parts of varying cultures speak to your spirit and participate in that? When the creators(who consequently happen to be at the bottom of society) accuse the takers(who happen to be at the top) of appropriation, is the fault single sourced? Does recognition for birthing something make you a better, more advanced human? Once you begin to realize that certain things only flow through you out into the world, is that some sort of destiny fulfillment? And if so, what value do “props” and “big-ups” now have? Does the soil resent the mountain top for being on Getty images so much? We’ll never know. It’s too busy continuously birthing things to complain.