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Is Dame Dash the Culture Vulture? – Rap Rehab

    Dame Dash took his traveling seminar to the Breakfast Club on March 13th and provided all the arrogant bluster expected of a Harlemite who was once expelled from school for parking his car in the principal’s spot. His convoluted perception of manhood is faulty and typical of the hyper-masculine mindset that holds us back. He managed to insult the entire working class he panders to with all his ventures. After yet another puzzling interview, the question is still up in the air: is he out to really empower anyone or hear himself talk?

    His interview with Charlamagne, DJ Envy and Angela Yee was full of the unprovoked pontificating, covert misogyny and blatant hypocrisy that have typified his onslaught of interviews and YouTube testimonies the past 2-3 years. In the interview Dash said he works with women because they’re more trustworthy, then later said nobody should be trusted. He rants about the pitfalls of working with other men but later said we should be more unified. He goes in on Lyor Cohen for exploiting the culture for his pockets then says “no ‘real man’ talks about another man’s pockets”. He even seems to contradict his valid points.

    On the Breakfast Club and Sway, every time Dame was called on a questionable statement he slithered out into the open field and went on another tangent. It’s as if he doesn’t care about staying consistent as much as negating the last statement someone made. I get the feeling if he were to ever write an advice book it may resemble the nonlinear Goosebumps books, where the bottom of every page offered the reader a different continuation depending on their perspective of the text:

    “If you disagree that a real man doesn’t ask another real man for help, turn to page 89 to learn why they do. If you agree, keep going (pause).”

    From his soapbox, Dash does plant seeds on how to make money off the internet and speaks on why profit margins make independent entrepreneurship a more lucrative avenue. His hustler spirit is admirable, but when one has to pull his wisdom from the muck of “jobs are for lazy people”, “saving money is for suckers”, and“no real man should want a boss”, it becomes a ridiculous chore. If any of those comments were the first thing someone said at their lecture, how many people would stick around?

    Dame has noted in the past “I’m one of those guys who has two very concrete experiences. One was the authentic experience in the street, and the other was boarding school and people from different cultures.” His fixation with being a “boss” comes from his upbringing. His Mother passed at age 15, and his Father ran a Methadone clinic. Those two things compounded will instill any youth with a self sufficiency and appreciation for making ones own way.

    His mindset is understandable, but it doesn’t excuse an unwillingness to realize that all people of color are not going to have those same avenues or resources he utilized. Even through his independence, he in part used an inheritance from his mother to send himself to the affluent South Kent boarding school in Connecticut. Every kid doesn’t have that opportunity.

    During his Breakfast Club interview, he said he didn’t see why people couldn’t monetize video upload services like Vimeo and “flip” some money. He made it sound as easy as 1-2-3. Dame may have a gift of gab, relationships with creative people, and schooling that opened his eyes to all the world offers, but everyone doesn’t. Just what is an orphaned teenager from Gary, Indiana, with a public education, no money and minimal artistic ability supposed to put online to generate substantial income? The millions of impoverished minorities outnumber the ones with the relationships and resources to become highly successful.

    Dame Dash is respected and revered because of the rarity of his achievements as a Black man in a country with a thriving school to prison pipeline. He’s an exception that proves the rule. His utopia appears to be a world where everyone makes tons of money, but there is no hierarchy and no man is willing to work under another, even for a greater goal. Capitalism is fatally flawed, but the proposal of a virtual anarchy where no one has a job because of their pride (and patriarchal issues?) is laughably ridiculous. He wants to be a source of inspiration, but his apparent blueprint for societal advancement has foolish qualifiers that wouldn’t get 10 seconds of discussion in any business school.

    Dame worked hard for everything he earned, but with his nearsightedness and arrogance it could be argued that he worked just as hard to alienate himself from the industry he was once apart of. Suggesting that men who make the best of their situation and decide to work an honest, legal, living are unworthy of calling themselves “men” disqualifies him from being considered credible. Is his basis for manhood money, independence, and women one has “got pregnant”? It’s an indictment on our current environment that someone could even feel empowered to make such statements.

    Apparently he’s “disowned” Stacey Dash, but his stubborn “if I can do it anyone can” mentality comes across like the pompous Republican jargon she’s been spewing. He’s deathly afraid of saying anything that could be childishly construed as homoerotic, but has no problem emasculating the working class of men that have put money in his pocket for years. He doesn’t respect 9 to 5ers, but will gladly take their money. Could he be considered a culture vulture?