Whitney Houston Funeral

Whitney Houston Funeral
As I watched the Whitney Houston funeral services, as broadcast on American cable TV yesterday, several things struck me.

Here was the root of the mid 20th century Black American culture on full display for the American public to see. Of course this should come as no surprise, because this was indeed the culture that had produced Whitney Houston.

It is also the very same culture that had produced Michael Jackson, Julian Bond, Magic Johnson, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, Julius Erving, Jessie Jackson, Richard Pryor, Berry Gordy and many others.

This was the culture that had provided the fuel for the American Civil Rights movement. Up until about 1990, this genius of a culture had produced nearly 100 percent of that which was considered a contribution of Black Americans and probably 75 percent of the American culture, exported to the rest of the world. It was a culture built upon simple notions of "sacrifice today, so that future generations can be better off."

Then around 1990, a very curious thing happened to this culture. It was rejected, lock, stock & barrel by its own children. This rejection is sometimes expressed by Black Americans themselves when they describe this rejection using terminology like "Old School" vs. "Hip Hop." Because of the terminology that is used, it is easy to think that somehow this is an inter-generational dispute about music.

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