They got me trapped, can barely walk the city street
Without a cop harassing me, searching me then asking my identity
Hands up, throw me up against the wall, didn’t do a thing at all
I’m telling you one day these suckers gotta fall
Cuffed up throw me on the concrete
Tupac is a hip hop artist who was strong, head-hard, and passionate, especially towards his opinions about racial tensions and police brutality. This is especially true in one of his songs titled Trapped, which was part of his first released album in 1991, titled 2Pacalypse Now. Below the Youtube link are part of the lyrics that depict this well.
In fact, rappers like Tupac wrote songs like this in order to bring to light within the community about issues that people can stand against together, and by doing so become more powerful. According to the article titled “Seeds and Legacies: Tapping the Potential in Hip Hop,” author Gwendolyn D. Pough describes hip hop as a “state of mind; a way of living and being that expands further then what kind of music one listens to” (Pough, 284). Pough also later describes hip-hop as having an effect on youth for social change (284).
I mostly agree with Pough’s stance on hip hop having an effect on youth for social change, though I see that more recently that some hip hop and rap songs seem to have different connotations, songs that are not about empowerment and bringing issues to light, but rather about sex, drugs, and money. For example, Bartier Cardi – Cardi B, which is a song that contains the topics aforementioned. Of course this is not always the case with all current rap, and one also has to consider that we do not have much control over what becomes “popular” rap music. That being said, there may be more songs out there that still have powerful messages, though they are just not “mainstream”.
Pough D. Gwendolyn, “Seeds and Legacies: Tapping the Potential of Hip-Hop”