The Brilliance Of Daniel Kaluuya & Lakeith Stanfield

Disclaimer: Spoooooilers!

So, like I always say, I’m going to try and keep this post short today. The fact of the matter is, Judas and the Black Messiah is a great fucking movie, son. All I know is, Daniel Kaluuya and Lakeith Stanfield took turns putting on acting clinics in this shit. Real talk, after watching the film, my wife and I debated who’s the real focus of the plot. I mean, it’s hard to look away from Fred Hampton, but William O’Neal‘s story is equally as compelling, man. In any case, I just want to give credit where credit is due, fam. Shaka King did the damn thing with this film, bruh.

Ok, for those who are unaware, Judas and the Black Messiah dropped last week on HBO Max and in select theaters. The film chronicles O’Neal’s troubles with the law and how the FBI, namely Roy Mitchell, use him to infiltrate and destabilize Hampton and the Chicago faction of the Black Panther Party. Thanks to O’Neal’s informant-ass ratting, the Bureau is able to not only lock Hampton up over some bullshit, but eventually plan his execution. All in all, O’Neal leaves a lot of devastation in his wake.

Now, I could go on and on about what I love about the film, but I’ll just leave everyone with three takeaways (two about the film and one about the real story). First, I’m amazed by Kaluuya’s ability to not only embody Hampton’s personality, but also his vocal inflections. Son, it’s absolutely spooky that he can be that accurate. Frankly, it’s always a good time when I forget the actor and become fully-immersed in the character. Second, Stanfield does a fantastic job of leaving me confused. On the real, I can’t reconcile whether O’Neal really believes in the work that he’s doing or if he’s just playing the snitch for survival. All I can say is, Stanfield does an incredible job of making O’Neal seem ambiguous. Regardless, fuck William O’Neal.

Moving on, my third point relates to the actual story. Keeping it a buck, the film just highlights something that I’ve always felt: J. Edgar Hoover fucking won, man. Thanks to COINTELPRO, he was able to destabilize every Black movement in America. From Hampton to Martin Luther King Jr. to Malcolm X to Huey Newton, Bobby Seale and Eldridge Cleaver, Hoover was able to successfully destroy all of these movements from the inside. His fear of a “Black messiah” inspired him to decimate any group that strived for Black upliftment. The way I see it, the FBI can try to rebrand all they want, but their story is rooted in the oppression of Black people. That’s just a fucking fact, fam.

In the end, everybody should go watch the movie, bruh. Ultimately, it’s masterfully done and the real tale is incredibly infuriating. By and by, Hampton was right, son. At the end of the day, they can murder a revolutionary, but they can’t murder revolution. Always remembers that. That is all. LC out.

How Economics Got Fred Hampton Killed

So, I won’t lie, son. On the real, I’ve been in a major Fred Hampton frame of mind lately. Now, as anyone could imagine, a lot of that has to do with the Judas and the Black Messiah movie that’s dropping this week. Despite my previous criticism of Daniel Kaluuya, his pedigree as an actor just can’t be questioned. With that being said, I’m positive that he’s going to do Hampton’s legacy justice. In any case, since Hampton’s name is back in the limelight, I’d like us all to really dive into his message. All in all, he was assassinated for one main reason: uniting various groups of disenfranchised people for economic empowerment.

Ok, for those who are unaware, outside of his leadership position in the Black Panther Party, the Rainbow Coalition was his next evolution. With this group, he was able to unite the Panthers, the Young Patriots Organization and the Young Lords for a common goal. Now, while it’s always easy to spot the differences between Black, White and Latino people, Hampton’s mission was to display our commonalities. When it came to institutions like poverty and housing, the affects were felt across a variety of communities. So, coming together to address these disparities was a sign of true revolution.

The truth is, the FBI and the rest of the federal government were well-aware of this, man. J. Edgar Hoover was especially fearful of a “Black messiah” that could galvanize the people. Shit, COINTELPRO was created for the sole purpose of destroying any movement designed to help Black America. Real talk, Black leaders were already considered “dangerous” for espousing beliefs of equality. However, they were ESPECIALLY feared when they turned their attention to economics and coalescing with outside groups.

Look, it’s not a coincidence that Hampton was killed 8 months after founding the Rainbow Coalition. I mean, the FBI had a file on him since 1967, but was murdered 2 years later when he started working with different racial and ethnic groups. Furthermore, it’s not a coincidence that Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated a month before the Poor People’s Campaign‘s march in Washington. Hell, everyone loves his “I Have A Dream” speech, but neglect to talk about his demand for wealth redistribution, equal housing and land rights. All I know is, when King and Hampton started turning their attention to the greater crimes of capitalism, they were removed from this Earth. The way I see it, none of that was by chance, man.

In this end, this is how it has always played out historically. Ultimately, Tulsa wasn’t destroyed because of Dick Rowland. It was destroyed because White people couldn’t stand the idea of financially-independent Black people. By and by, the evils of this country really rear their heads when the money is being affected. At the end of the day, slavery was about free labor for monetary gain. All I can say is, true liberation in this country comes from financial freedom. All of our heroes knew that and that’s a main cause for why they were murdered. That is all. LC out.

Randi B. & LC: Joe Biden, Beyoncé & Educating Non-Black Folk

What’s good, brethren? On this episode, Randi B. and I were back on Facebook Live talking about Joe Biden, Beyoncé‘s Black Is King and educating non-Black people about Black issues. It evolved into a conversation that included missing simple pleasures during quarantine and the upcoming Fred Hampton movie, Judas and the Black Messiah. Check it out on YouTube below. Let’s go!

What Kinda Sh*t Is Daniel Kaluuya On?

So, let me begin this post by saying that I’m actually a big Daniel Kaluuya fan. Even though most people know him for his immaculate performance in Get Out, I remember getting hip to him from Kick-Ass 2 and Sicario. In any case, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t disappointed with his recent comments in Radio Times. The way I see it, the roles he plays don’t allow him to be ambivalent about racial issues.

Ok, for those who missed it, Kaluuya just did an interview with the aforementioned Radio Times. Now, during the course of the conversation, he expressed that he didn’t want to become “the race guy” and that he’s “just Daniel, who happens to be Black.” Furthermore, he described the topic of race as “boring” and that it’s a “narrative that is pushed.” All in all, Kaluuya doesn’t really want to be bothered with these issues anymore.

Now, there are a couple of reasons why he’s way out of line for these statements. First, he’s operating in Hollywood, where Black people have had to fight for EONS for decent representation. Shit, based on the fact that #OscarsSoWhite was a very recent movement, it’s clear that minorities are STILL struggling for proper recognition. On top of that, with opportunities for Black actors being so scarce, a large number of British thespians, including Kaluuya, have been picked over scores of Black Americans who are looking for their shot. So, Kaluuya has benefitted from the path that was forged before him, but now doesn’t want to talk about inequality? Son, get the flying fuckity-fuck outta here!

Second, despite his assertion that most of his roles don’t revolve around race, the fact of the matter is, damn near all of the films that he’s known for have a strong undertone or flat-out overtone about racial issues. Hell, in Get Out, Chris Washington was fetishized for his potential by a White family. In Black Panther, W’Kabi followed Killmonger, who’s sole goal was Black liberation. In Queen & Slim, which I’ve already expressed my love for, his character and his lady were victims of an overzealous police officer, much like many Blacks here. Next, he’s scheduled to play Fred Hampton in an upcoming project. So, for someone who doesn’t want to deal with race, he sure spends a lot of fucking time playing roles soaked in it.

In the end, shutting the fuck up is free, man. Ultimately, no one is asking him to be the beacon of the movement. However, there’s no need for him to thumb his nose at a discussion that his films actively contribute to. By and by, non-American Black people always seem to have a skewed perspective about race in this country. At the end of the day, discrimination is DEEPLY rooted in how this nation was constructed and currently operates. The way I see it, if he doesn’t want to be bothered by it, then leave Hollywood the fuck alone, fam. That is all. LC out.