I AM LEGEND - A Dystopian Urban Fable for the Night Before Xmas...
My name is Michael Jordan. I am a survivor living in Atlanta, Georgia. I am blogging on the world wide internets. If you are out there… if anyone is out there…
In the future, there is only one man who survives the Hip-Hop holocaust.
It all started when it was announced in the mainstream media that there was finally a cure for the highly-contagious social disease known as “gangster rap.” Infecting billions of people worldwide, this mental condition known as GRD (Gangster Rap Disease) had brought the world to its knees in an unapologetic zeitgeist since the 1970s.
It was decided by a team of evil monks that the culture of Hip-Hop was behind this madness, and that there were three magic words that, if taken out of the dialect of the cultural language, would remove the power of GRD from earth. Of course, this would take time to spread among the proletariat, but the minds behind this movement were completely convinced of their righteous cause.
And so began the campaign to outlaw the words “nigger”, “bitch” and “hoe.”
No one stopped to think that by removing these three words, not only gangster rap but also Hip-Hop as a general creative force and lifestyle would be severely altered to the point of mutation. But before a general consensus could be met, or even a majority vote by those in power, an album was released that caused a seismic shift in the consciousness of all those who once referred to themselves as “b-boys” and “b-girls.” This album, while widely praised as the culture’s saving grace, was named possibly for the artist’s belief that he had outgrown his peers. He was freeing himself from the confinement of popular definition of the word “Black.” He was hailed as a genius—a title he fully embraced for himself—and was lauded as a signal of positive things to come. He was Kanye West, and he created the cure...
Graduation was a harbinger of the new times. After the album unsurprisingly outsold its competition, The Owners (the secret society of record company magnates) decided that this new format was indeed the future. Instead of financing music that could inspire a revolt, it was agreed that all new rap music would be quarantined for quality assurance. War was, indeed, not the answer. GRD was officially D.O.A.
People became parodies of their former selves—caricatures of the moral character that was once dominant in the urban ghettos and on the rural dirt roads of America and beyond. Gone was the threat of revolution, replaced by a belief that gentile music would overcome the oppressive powers of the world. Great acts such as The Wu-Tang Clan, even after sampling such groups as The Beatles, were outsold by candy corn children’s groups.
No one complained. No one cried “foul.” The new rules were accepted as religion. Soon, the media began to alter its reporting of rap music, and the culture itself began to bleed. Those who rebelled were executed or cast from their homes, only to be hunted and slaughtered by vampires, creeps, goons and demonic spirits.
The “cleansing” began with the graffiti artists. Then, concentration camps were built for the break-dancers, disc jockeys, radio personalities, party promoters… anyone rumored to be secretly involved with anything urban. When the emcees were rounded up and collectively destroyed, all that remained were the journalists, or “The 5th Element.” They fought valiantly, raging against the machine. Yet inevitably, one by one they were all consumed with grief, greed or complete indifference. They splintered into individual cells, making their capture and executions simple.
An idea that began as innocently as human life had become corrupted and maliciously redesigned. As gloriously as Hip-Hop had ascended to the top, it crumbled into dust...
Wake up, my child. Tomorrow is still Christmas, joy is in the air and everything is perfect in the world.
It was all a dream.