Only Kanye West can have the whole world running around on a scavenger hunt, scouring the streets like some urban guerrillas, all in anticipation to catch a glimpse of his new video and song, “New Slaves”. In a stroke of marketing genius that one would only expect from an artist such as Kanye, 66 buildings across the globe projected the music video. As if protocol by now for news concerning anything Kanye, the video and reactions went viral, inciting diverse opinions on the marketing of it and the provocative nature of the song’s lyrics. Hit the jump for the video footage and more regarding “New Slaves”.
“My mama was raised in an era when/Clean water was only served to the fairer skin
Doing clothes you would have thought I had help/But they wouldn’t be satisfied unless I picked the cotton myself
You see its broke nigga racism/That’s that “don’t touch anything in the store”
And there’s rich nigga racism/That’s that “come in and buy more”
What you want a Bentley, fur coat and diamond chain?/All you blacks want all the same things
Used to only be niggas /Now everybody play me
Spending everything on that Alexander Wang/New Slaves“
Talk to ’em ‘Ye. Speak to them and let them know how it really is. Listening to this song almost forces all the people that do to contextualize it. But it’s because this is Kanye West we’re talking about. One who’s tongue never knew an issue that it didn’t like to call out. Just ask George W. Bush. Though that same brand of frank and unbridled tongue lashing has landed Kanye in equal amounts of hot water as it has people thinking he walked on it. However, with “New Slaves” he brings to light glaring racial issues that still linger, despite the fact that many have distinguished our current society as one that is “post-racial”.
The global marketing and placement of each video premier for “New Slaves” reaches all walks of life and all types of class, especially touching all who think they’re far removed from the realities of working class minorities and also those who are most vulnerable to the exploitation of this flawed system of excess materialism and greed.
Yeah they confuse us with bullshit/Like the New World Order
Meanwhile the DEA/Teamed up with the CCA
They tryna lock niggas up/They tryna make new slaves
See that’s that private-owned prison/Get your piece today
In the second verse, Kanye is referring to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA). Though the DEA is the more well-known organization of the two, the CCA isn’t all too familiar to the general public. For those that aren’t in the know, the CCA is a private organization that controls over 90,000 inmates in over 60 prison facilities throughout the country. The inherent nature of any corporation to exist is for the sole reason of profit. However, it just so happens that this one makes money every time an individual is incarcerated. In light of such, it only makes sense for the DEA to work out some sort of profitable arrangement with the CCA. What Kanye is hinting at between these two bedfellows is that it is not a coincidence that there are more black men incarcerated in America than any other group of people.
The New Workout Plan, this single is clearly not.
At the end of it, though, we have Kanye West doing what he does best – himself. The man is as self-aware as any of us and isn’t afraid to use his status to speak out about whatever he feels like or grab the attention of the masses through a seemingly endless amount of creative and artistic genius. Admittedly, I can simply say that this is just ‘Ye being ‘Ye.