It's Important I Remember That Jay-Z Arrived on the Day Fred Hampton Died―

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

real niggas just multiply, he said, selling himself
to anybody that will buy the pursuit of billions as liberation work.

In saying this, Jay’s mind slipped past Fred Hampton being
assassinated while his girlfriend Deborah slept next to him
eight months into carrying their child, a baby boy to be named Fred.

                                                    That's real real nigga multiplication.

Fred knew the streets like Jay,
but Jay didn't know the streets like Fred.

                                                                           That's real, my nigga.

See, what caught Fred two in the dome from CPD
were the disputes he could smooth over between deadly adversaries,
so gifted with the gab he got white boys mobbing
with blacks and the Latinx, so good even Jesse Jackson jocked
his rainbow steelo as signifier and testament.

"Dead Presidents II" comes to mind for me suddenly:
Three shots
, close range, never touched me, divine intervention.
And maybe it was. And maybe God, like most things,
looks more white in juxtaposition, but whatever.

Tell Jigga the poor can still help the poor if they're one;
reach a billy first for what if it ain't a club
you're going to swing at heads with? 

We say we're not going to fight capitalism with black capitalism,
or Fred said, rather, speaking on behalf of a fist of people—
and Jay dropped nary a bar in response but
draped Fred's name like a king’s robe over his brushed-off shoulders.

I remember when Kaepernick was still out of a gig and
Mr. Carter cashed that Goodell check because he knew it was good
even if not underwritten with good intentions,
pro-black in the sense of demonstrating a profit.

So I got rich and gave back, to me that's the win-win,
or to he, rather. Jay. Gave only game back if anything
and charged $9.99 for it when most of us
ain't even trying to play no more.