By Fritz The Cat, Vice Magazine
While the whole of North America has wrapped itself in the stars and stripes over the last year in some fear-induced angry “U.S.A!” chanting haze, it seems even our once-critical-of-government hip hop nation has joined the (Republican) party. Even Ghostface, supposedly a Five Percenter, offered to give Bush a rest and take charge of the “war.” With KRS-One too busy making gospel albums and fighting his one-sided battle with Nelly, X-Clan’s Brother J mysteriously M.I.A., Ice-T getting his act on, and Chuck D having a difficult time reaching the kids, Oakland’s Paris has stepped up to take another swing at another Bush. The stockbroker/investment banker by day and self-proclaimed “Black Panther of Rap” by night delivers the science behind his upcoming Sonic Jihad.
VICE: On your new single “What Would You Do?” you’re addressing a lot of political issues no other rapper would touch.
Paris: That song pretty much spells where I’m coming from as far as our involvement in this war on terrorism. I wholeheartedly believe this was a US-sponsored event on Sept. 11. People in high places utilize this to expand government control, to get control of roughly six trillion dollars in oil in the Caspian Sea. They also use it to step up drug trafficking. Afghanistan is responsible for roughly 60% of the world’s heroin. When you’re conscious, it’s pretty apparent the agenda they’re trying to push. There’s been numerous instances of the government using the media to build up this war campaign. You see it on J.A.G., The West Wing, all these movies, all got to do with war, and have a pro-USA kind of message. But Bush and bin Laden have been doing business for years. Carlyle Group is the name of the corporation that they have together. They are war industrialists. If contracts are awarded as a result of this war, they stand to benefit. It’s basically murder for oil, murder for dope, and murder for control.
My whole album ain’t gonna just be about this. But I just want to come out making music that makes sense for a change. Music that’s not degrading, talking about shooting somebody, or pimping women. The majority of people are brainwashed, thinking what the US is doing is right. Wearing red, white, and blue, and all that. Even other rappers. I can’t blame ’em if all you get on TV is one point of view. They deliver news on terrorism shit like it’s the stocks — every news channel got a ticker on the bottom of who’s blowing shit up.
This record is going to have nothing to do with that world. It’s gonna be independent. There’s no major corporation in their right mind that’ll jump on board with this. I’ve been through this shit with “Bush Killa” in ’92, with Ice-T and the whole Time Warner thing. There’s no corporation that’ll be into this shit. When you’re releasing Celine Dion records and all that, there’s very little chance of releasing something that goes against the grain.