By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
Kurt Loder of MTV, the network that chose to air and publicize what is described as the most violent video in the music channel's history, absolutely sputtered with indignation.
Chuck D and crew have played the pundits like tin kazoos. When George Herbert Walker Bush aired his racial fantasy video in which white people were told to expect home invasion, rape and murder by the Willie Hortons of this world, Mr. Bush was catapulted into the White House.
But when Public Enemy floats its fantasy, commentators must ponder, Whither the republic?
Coming soon to a PBS outlet near you-MacNeil/Lehrer presents "Public Enemy: Cutting-Edge Zulus or Neo-Liberals With an Attitude?"
I think the idea that Rosa Parks and Chuck D ought to tolerate their situation with "dignity" is remarkable.
What is so threatening about rage? In the 19th century, the descendants of the Mayan Indians were disciplined with the lash in the Yucatan.
The bloodied victims had a proverb that explained their plight.
Los Indios no oyen sino por las nalgas-"The Indians cannot hear except through their backs."
This was not, as you might suspect, a homily of the man with the whip; the 19th-century Mayans felt they deserved to be beaten.
Personally, I prefer the gritty resistance of Rosa Parks. As the trial commenced in Montgomery, Alabama, regarding the bus seat reserved for whites, a young black girl described Ms. Parks to the crowd assembled outside the courthouse, "Oh, she's so sweet," said the youngster. "They've messed with the wrong one now."
And so they had.
If Public Enemy creates a tape in which the governor of Arizona is blown up, you won't hear any gnashing of teeth from me. That particular video isn't any more outrageous than a Steve Benson editorial cartoon. The only qualitative difference is that Benson's viciousness gets nominated for Pulitzers.
Chuck D wants to detonate J. Fife Symington III? Get in line, pal.
Last year Symington was nowhere to be seen during the King holiday protest march. Symington was in a run-off for the governor's seat at the time, and he was still courting the redneck voters who had both defeated the King Day observance at the polls and voted to make English the official language of Arizona.
This year Governor Symington has pandered to the punch-drunk middle class by offering a minuscule tax break-$60...to the average household, to be financed by the working poor. Symington has proposed that people making $4, $5 and $6 an hour simply give up their government health insurance to pay for the tax cut.
This year Governor Symington walked at the head of the thousands of blacks who marched for a King holiday. Later, he even made a speech to the sea of black humanity assembled at Wesley Bolin Plaza. He knew better than to mention his tax plan. He was all chitlins and commitment.
Chuck D is correct: Los politicos no oyen sino por las nalgas.