Sunday, May 15, 2005

Public Enemy's alleged anti-semitism

I keep hearing a charge of anti-semitism against one of my favorite groups, Public Enemy. That sounds ridiculous just cause a Jew, Rick Rubin, signed them (Russell Simmons didn't believe in it) and executively produced their two first albums. But, now, if they are really anti-semites, why do they just say so? You'll never hear their side of the story.

Sez Griff:
"I can't even sit here...and look you in the face and say what you heard on that tape is actually what I said. I would have to hear that tape, cause like I said, you probably dont have the same tape that I have. I say that on the tape that you heard on the tape you got from David Mills"

Sez Interviewer: "So you didnt say that?"
Sez Griff: "No, definitely not. To say that the majority of Jews are wicked? That's crazy. Really, really crazy."

Sez Griff:
"White guy walks up to me, and basically asks me, did I want to make any comments, any statements on Jews and I was like... 'Nah!' Next morning...there in the paper...Chuck was furious...and I told him straight up...'why should I lie to you? I didnt say anything to this guy!' But Chuck didnt believe me...I was out."


Sez Chuck:
"[Griff] is going thorugh a delvelopment of reconcilatory action...because they dont represent the views of Public Enemy...and Rabbi Cooper, you know so."

Sez Chuck:
"In Schindler’s List, Spielberg was talking about the pain of what he visualized in his people, and I’d just say for me as a black man artist in the music industry, the pain I visualized was ‘Swindler’s Lust’. The swindle of the music industry has really been one-sided when it comes to black artists, especially in HipHop. People have taken it as an attack on ‘Schindler’s List’, like it’s me saying Jewish people run the music industry, which I think is stupid and I wouldn’t say it. But I would say that everybody had their piece of taking the soul out of black folks and turning us into jokes, even black people themselves. Anybody can be a swindler. People might say, ‘How could Chuck D play around with Spielberg’s creation?’ But I’m like, ‘Why the fuck not? He’s not God!’"

One last thing:
"More Dollars more cents for the big six/another million led to bled claimin’ innocence"
From "Swindlers Lust". The big six are the six big record companies in a million dollars business. EMI, CBS, Warner Bross, Universal, Columbia and Polygram.

25 Comments:

Blogger The Book said...

Do you think he disirved to be put out of Public Enemy Though?


If only he would've Admitted that it happened and than apoligized he probably would've stood in the group.

10:28 AM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

assuming he did say that (which i think its the case), then yeah, he shouldve admitted to it and apologized.

in the case of he didnt say that, then i guess he did the right thing.

3:06 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

my main issue is that if he actually believed that, why is he saying that saying that is crazy? why doesnt he apologize and say that he doesnt believe it anymore?

did he ever think that way? does he still now? if so, why does he deny it?

3:08 PM  
Blogger Ian said...

Perhaps he said it was crazy after he realized the shitstorm it got him into. And as for Rick Rubin...look, some Jewish people in the US support Palestinian terrorists. I'm not trying to equivocate the two, since P.E. hasn't killed anyone to my knowledge, but there's too much evidence (Farrakhan, Griff, "Welcome To The Terrordome," etc.) for it to all be a coincidence. Did Chuck D really have to name his rock band "Confrontation Camp"?

3:14 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

then i guess theres alot of self-hating jews or whatever involved.

Lyor Cohen, Def Jam CEO: a Jew

Bill Adler, Director of Public relations at Def Jam: a Jew

Rick Rubin, Co-founder of Def Jam, exec producer of PE, person who signed PE: a Jew

By "Welcome to the Terrordome", I'm guessing youre reffering to the following:
"Apology made to who ever pleases / Still they got me like Jesus"

I did think that the whole Jesus/Jews thing was unnecessary. However, I would like to hear what he has to say about it because all art is open to interpretation, both right and wrong.

"Told a Rab get off the rag"
^Now that one is not anti-semetic because it is talking specifically about one guy.

The whole Farrakhan wouldnt be brought up if it wasnt for Griff. Several people, right or wrong, identify with the overall frustration and anger he expresses, at least, thats what i think. I doubt anyone would argue that, say, Ja Rule is an anti-semite.

The whole point to me throughtout this is: Why is there straight-up denial to anti-semitism for a group that, according to Chuck, is built on the premise of never holding back, never backing down? Griff is saying that anti semitism is "crazy. really, really, crazy." Now if he really wants to promote it, why would he denounce it completely like that?

4:51 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

my basic point is, and maybe im being a little naive (nh) here, why dont we give them the benefit of the doubt? i mean, chuck said griff had to "reconcile his actions" and understand why he was wrong. if he really hates jews, why is saying his best friend is wrong on national television?

the whole "chuck d hates jews" thing i dont believe at all

griff, on the other hand...

5:05 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

one last thing: about confrontation camp, sez chuck:

"There was no harm intended towards anyone."

5:10 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

I could say I'm Jewish tomorrow - who's to say I'm not?
Now, if you hate Jews, why would you say you might become one?

"Lay it on the line, Chuck, do you have a problem with Jewish people?"

"Not at all, I judge people as individuals. If a person I don't like happens to be Jewish, I just don't like that person. Your religion don't mean shit - if you're fucked up, you're fucked up. Do I have problems with black folk as individuals? Yeah, a few of them. But it's a waste of time to dislike group philosophies other than saying that I'm tired of people being programmed, and that's what this whole album's about. Fuck it, I could say I'm Jewish tomorrow - who's to say I'm not? I really don't get into classifying people other than saying that, as a black person, I'm classified."

5:20 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

more:

"Chuck: How many people make mistakes and call us Concentration Camp. It's almost like cats expect and want it to be called Concentration Camp, trying to get an edge and say, "Oh you guys have a history of being anti-Semitic." Even if it was Concentration Camp, we would be in it so how can it be totally derogatory? But no, it's Confrontation Camp and we're confronting the situation. But everyday somebody fucks up and calls it Concentration Camp."

5:24 PM  
Blogger Ian said...

But shit, he had to call it "Confrontation Camp," didn't he?

4:50 PM  
Anonymous The JB said...

Dig a little deeper guys.

I've seen Farrakhan denounce Jews from the pullpit. I've seen footage of him go so far as to talk about their noses. I've watched black-american islamic congregations cheer at Farrakhan's insults towards Jews. (Dateline or 60 minutes did this story back in the mid-to-late nineties. I'll try to look it up.)

The follower of Farrakhan... Don't tell me that you understand, until you hear the man.

I've heard him, and I think he's a poor excuse for a leader of anything. He plays on the, "you wouldn't be a Christian if your slavemaster wasn't" idea in order to draw black americans into his "flock" (Revenue base). Unfortunately, it's a sad diversion from real individualism for black america. A "phantom menace" if you will. (I know, a sickening Star Wars reference. I'm sorry.)

I can't say that I've ever thought of the name Confrontation Camp as anything but a cool play on words. I rather think the term "concentration camp" technically references unspecific places and events, rather than THE actual confrontation camps of WWII. Though indeed, one is a fool if one isn't reminded of the Holocaust when the term "concentration camp" is uttered, so it kinda goes both ways. I guess if you don't wanna get hit by a car, then don't play in the street. If you don't wanna draw negative "anti-semite" attention to your band, then don't call it "Confrontation Camp." They sucked anyways, so I don't really care.

Speaking of religious slander, why haven't I seen any discussions on Slayer's outright rage against Christianity?

I keep the Bible in a pool of blood so that none of its lies can affect me!

Fuck being subltle, these guys go for the throat without apology. But say one bad thing about muslims and LOOK OUT!!!

Rick Rubin produced the most recent Slayer album, "God Hates Us All." What a coincidence. (Actually, he's produced the majority of all Slayer albums. One of them, "Reign in Blood" was first issued on Def Jam. It was his last before leaving the now "joke-of-a-hip-hop-label").

I guess Christians should start car-bombing.

5:38 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

>But shit, he had to call it "Confrontation Camp," didn't he?

like chuck said, it still wouldnt be derogatory towards jews cause he is IN the camp.

on another note, i dont know enough about the whole farrakhan thing to really speak on it.

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"then i guess theres alot of self-hating jews or whatever involved."

When Griffs remarks came to light Chuck was pressured to drop Griff, and he did. I'm not aware of any indications or accusations of anti-semitism prior to that.

"Griff is saying that anti semitism is "crazy. really, really, crazy." Now if he really wants to promote it, why would he denounce it completely like that?"

IIRC, at the time he made his statements he didn't back off from them. I think these statements backing off came years later.

"why doesnt he apologize and say that he doesnt believe it anymore?"

Because people don't like to admit to mistakes. They like to have it both ways.

"like chuck said, it still wouldnt be derogatory towards jews cause he is IN the camp."

If an all Jewish group chose the name I think Jews would still be offended by it.

6:50 AM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

my point was that if PE were some anti-semetic motherfuckers, they wouldnt sign to a label with so many jews and wouldnt have jews near their music.

also, my point isnt about whether people would be offended by the name, but whether it was derogatory.

4:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"my point was that if PE were some anti-semetic motherfuckers, they wouldnt sign to a label with so many jews and wouldnt have jews near their music."

OK I see your point. Really though I think anti-Semites would sign to a label that had some Jews working for it. Unless that had a large number of options.

"also, my point isnt about whether people would be offended by the name, but whether it was derogatory."

Thats not really a different point. Why else would someone be offended by it except for the fact that its derogatory?

5:09 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

> Really though I think anti-Semites would sign to a label that had some Jews working for it. Unless that had a large number of options.

The label they signed to had a jew as a CEO, a jew as a director of public relations, a group of jews as labelmates, and was co-founded by a jew.

chuck d didnt want to have a career in rap, but it was a jew who convinced him, and went on to exec produce his first 2 albums. they also sampled a certain jewish group in one of their songs. maybe even more times, but they sampled so much that i wouldnt know.

> Thats not really a different point. Why else would someone be offended by it except for the fact that its derogatory?

the fact that people get offended by it doesnt make it derogatory.

take as an example the word "niggardly" (which means "miserly".) the word does not refer either to Black people or to characteristics or behavior attributed to Black people, nor does it have any etymological connection to that.

though some people may be offended by the use of that word, in most cases it wont be derogatory.

"swindler's lust" - a few people were offended, but the people who anti-defamation league found that it was not meant to be offensive towards jews or be anti-semetic

3:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

>The label they signed to had a jew as a CEO, a jew as a director of public relations, a group of jews as labelmates, and was co-founded by a jew.

So some of his best friends are Jews? I'm not convinced.

>the fact that people get offended by it doesnt make it derogatory.

He chose to reference the Holocaust to make a pun. I'd say thats derogatory. (I'm talking about that confrontation camp thing not the swindlers lust thing).

10:17 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

> So some of his best friends are Jews? I'm not convinced.

I dont give a shit what you think - thats the truth.

Lyor Cohen, Def Jam CEO: a Jew

Bill Adler, Director of Public relations at Def Jam: a Jew

Rick Rubin, Co-founder of Def Jam, exec producer of PE, person who signed PE: a Jew

if you go to public enemy page, chuck d talks about lyor cohen.

if you look for any interview with rick rubin, there will be some mention of PE.

and bill adler...well, i cant really make a clear connection off the top of my head right now.

he did write the run-dmc book, tougher than leather

4:19 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

oh and the group of jews signed to the same label are the beastie boys

you can find a sample on songs including "party for your right to fight"

4:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

>Lyor Cohen, Def Jam CEO: a Jew
... etc

Lots of people are capable of working with Jews (or whoever) and being friendly with them and still thinking that Jews in general are wicked. Hence the phrase 'I'm not anti-Semetic some of my best friends are Jews'

7:15 PM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

now i may be wrong here, but isnt one of the biggest knocks against jews that they are "greedy" or "cheap"?

now if you believe that, why would you let them be in charge of money at the company youre gonna work for

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we've past the point of diminishing returns on this conversation.

Like I said I doubt they had the option of signing with a label that employed no Jews.

7:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I guess Christians should start car-bombing" You ever been to Palestine dude? Fuck-you!

6:27 AM  
Blogger Zodiac Digital said...

> Like I said I doubt they had the option of signing with a label that employed no Jews.

they werent looking to be signed.

rick rubin (a jew) convinced them to be signed. chuck d did not want to have a career in rap. he said he was too old for that.

rick rubin convinced him to sign to his label, which was co-founded and CEO'ed by jews and then rick rubin (still a jew) exec produced their first 2 albums

its not like they had a couple of jews on staff

2:29 PM  
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