I’M SO HOOD (The Florida Anthem for Hip-Hop Mayors)


Ok, this one is long (nolo). Bear with me on a tale of sex, money and scandalous city government officials.

The “Hip-Hop Mayor” Kwame Kilpatrick of Detroit, Mi., IS IN DEEP SHIT(nolo). It seems that hiring a mistress/childhood crush as your chief of staff when you rule over a large city government is – surprise – stupid. Running up a $210K credit card bill during your first 33 months in office – when your city is in the hole like Lexington Steele – is also not a good look.

But if you’re put in the position of power and not willing to ball ‘till you fall, what’s the point in being on top in the first place? Isn’t that how you’re supposed to rep for the cause as an historic figure in black politics? Oh, and does anybody from Atlanta, circa the 1992-2000 era, see any similarities to another black mayor?

In case you’re low on virtual memory, there was a certain black man who became a Democratic superstar in the early nineties. There was talk of him possibly being chosen as a running mate for retired U.S. emperor Hill/Billy Clinton. He was young, charismatic, energetic and willing to stand up for his constituency. That means voters, in case the syllables threw you off, and the man’s name is BILL CAMPBELL.


Like the linked story says, I remember how everybody was pissed after Freaknik 1996, one of the last decent years of the festival, because the police were acting a complete donkey AS IF WE WEREN’T. Folks were arrested. Constituents complained. Campbell went on the radio the next year and promised listeners that the weekend would go on uninterrupted by his police force this time around, and that no major road blocks would stop motorists from joining the city-wide fun. Of course, this was either a blatant lie or an attempt to pre-empt the situation with media savvy, since he probably had little control of it anyway. My guess is that he’d probably already received word from then-Governor Roy Barnes that whether he liked it or not, the Georgia State Patrol would be hoo-riding all weekend, all around I-285, and they were having none of the madness that had famously occurred in Atlanta for almost a decade. Party over; oops, out of time.


The rich white people of Buckhead had already decided that Bill had to go, and they weren’t trying to wait for his term to end. He pissed them off back when he let us take over Piedmont, during the lost days of Atlanta Live (RIP) and Bad Boy Weekend (which, I can’t lie, used to be diesel). When they complained about noise, traffic and generally-unpleasant public buffoonery, he’d go to Frank Ski and pull the race card on the morning show. His critics would grudgingly back off, and Campbell would crowd surf to victory on the shoulders of his biggest voting bloc…


What Campbell didn’t expect was how betrayed the poor black people of Bankhead felt by their anointed H.N.I.C. after Freaknik. Maybe he thought that it didn’t matter much anyway, since he couldn’t run for a third term. But their former voices of support could have helped him when he became a federal corruption target. Instead of having a booming city to support him when gravity began to settle, everyone, including current mayor Shirley Franklin, looked the other way like MLK when he stage-dived outside the courtroom.

Campbell was convicted. Right now, he’s locked up and they won’t let him out. I wonder if he’s listening to Public Enemy or Akon in his minimum-security cell. And will Kilpatrick start guest hosting Eminem mixtapes before the Feds haul his ass in as well? Here are some the frightening similarities between the two.


I’d keep my eyes on this one, oh my brothers and sisters. I’ve always heard that there’s some weird extradition law in Florida. Maybe that’s why gangsters move there and get chubby instead of just dying like they’re supposed to.

Word to the politically-minded children of Hip-Hop: Keep your musical taste and cultural affiliation private until you’re in the clear. Don’t piss off the establishment when they have the legal right to watch and document everything you do as a RACKETEERING BOSS public servant. And if you do get caught trying to run a dice tournament out of the chamber of commerce, buy a ticket to Tampa and start looking at real estate.

(DISCLAIMER: This post is not meant to disrespect or offend those I know personally who know the former mayor very well. This is just how I write. It gets worse…)

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