These days itís hard to breathe
The worlds got me thinking things are just not right
Why do little girls only dream of being video hoes, secretaries who get used by employers who will never love the heritage of their blood and the color of their skin?
This country wants to talk about what is a sin?
Educate yourself! The fact that NYC builds 100 prisons yearly next to every poor elementary, middle and high school and continues to fool the people paying taxes
We run bills up to their max, then cash in EBT for new sneaks
How can you wonder why white folks think weíre common niggas?
Denominations and right winged institutions fight over the right to shove ideas and false dreams into your influential minds and show you, not what you really need to believe, but the lies this country was built on, see
I wonder why they need us to feel so lost.
Why you all are the cost for money hungry politicians
Ready to use you up till the very last drop.
These days itís hard to see.
The worlds got everyoneís eyes closed so tight
Canít raise your tiny fists to fight because theyíre filled with forms for the food stamp office and advanced checks to get the latest bling.
Sad that girls at 13 are producing babies by fathers who have no idea what a womanís ovaries are for And school systems continue to bring apathetic teachers and advisors and corruption through these doors.
Why? I ask you why?
What happened to the dreams that rode us through the sky? Dreams, like the one that Doctor King passed on through his children and into this society.
DAMN, itís hard to breathe.
Canít help to be suffocated when my worst fears arenít of monsters under beds or ghosts in closets, but of baby boys and girls coming into this world as crack heads and prostitutes because their parents just donít care enough.
Hell, I know itís tough. Believe me when I say I know how hard it is when young black women are the subject for being maids and baby sitter and stripper , while black men are bent to play gangsters and rappers and hustlers until the day they die. But why?
Gotta hustle, to get that pimp status, at any expense, but would you want someone to do that to your sister, your mother, your aunt, your friend. And ladies, would you want your daughter to end up getting her ass beat because she owes her dealer another buck, because sheís out of luck and needs to dance for a little bit of change to feed the baby on the way?
But maybe Iím just projecting and these statistics are getting the best of me. And maybe things have changed since I was 14, but I tell you all it wasnít too long ago that I had a front row seat to this very show. And I think itís time to change the channel, hard core. Because I canít take the sight of it anymore.
These days it gets hard to want to believe.
The worlds got everyoneís mind in a twist.
Weíre so disillusioned that we canít find the shine to lift our fists, like this
\And start revolution Malcolmís way, saving the day with his Ďby any means necessaryí, while Angela Davis reshaped the role of afro love and women showing they were more than a piece of good tail and wailed on men for their unfair ways.
The days when black pride was the only high that we needed
We werenít so conceited and concerned with what our friend and the dudes on the corner thought.
We taught ourselves the value in our skin, in our men and our women
In the ways our children were brought up and didnít get stuck in the system
And if you lost all this bling, would you really miss them?
Isnít life worth so much more than nice sneaks and a fitted?
Better spent in books and education, truly learning what you need so that you donít have any limitations.
I know this world is against us all, from the moment we come out of the womb.
But itís up to you to set foot in every room, make your presence known; not by being another lost cause, but by showing Ďthe maní that you are the boss.
Donít get lost and look up to the folks in the game.
Look up to those who actually gave a damn about the land of your people.
Who fought to bring worth back to our hood.
Who understood what it meant to grow up this way and knew that they couldnít continue to pave the way with hand-me-downs and a broken crown.
You are all worth so much more than that.
These days, when I see your faces, it gives me hope.
Shows me that weíre not lost in the scope of a dirty lens.
That each and every one of you knows exactly how to lead the revolution
Know exactly what needs to be done.
Know the truth about who you are and where youíve come from.
These days, I know when I raise my fists, like this
Iíll get a response from my brothers and sisters in the struggle
Know that you all will be by my side as we ride the waves to self-made salvation
While we believe we can do anything possible with out a damn limitation.
These days, I know I am looking at future senators, lawyers, doctors and thinkers
These days, I know I am looking at todayís leaders.
Donít let a music video or street life determine who you are.
Know that life is full of every possibility with you as its star.
These days itís still so hard to breathe.
But at least Iíve got you all by my side, keeping on this great legacy.
Enough to make Asata, Octavia, Audre and Martin proud.
Enough to show that our revolution loud
These days, you all make the struggle worth it, see.
Today, my young leaders, youíve got me to believe.
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