Lupe Fiasco Will Give Up All Senselessly Violent Music, TV, Film & Other Content In 2019
Lupe Fiasco is ready to sacrifice the consumption of music, television, film and more to an admirable degree. The Chicago MC is resolving to take a proactive role in expunging as much violent content from his diet, a seemingly impossible task in today’s gratuitous climate.
Taking to social media to make the announcement on August 22, Lupe says he will mark the start of 2019 with the removal of “excessively violent music, tv, cartoons, content and films.” He’s also applying the practice in a retroactive fashion, vowing to avoid “all of the violent music, media and movies I grew up listening to and watching up.” He didn’t summarily ban violence and instead included some exemptions, namely Street Fighter. The longtime video game and anime aficionado made it a point to use “senseless” and “purposeless” to describe the form of violence he will no longer support or engage with.
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In response to the torrent of questions about his new policy pouring into the comments section, he posted a follow-up point to clarify his perspective. ” You may associate the opposite of violence with peace,” he said. That is not so to me. The opposite of violence is giving assistance, being helpful or building something. It is an action. Peace is a sense of a state of static being. One can be peacefully violent as one can be violently helpful. Actual Violence has a purpose but most depictions of violence in our modern consumptive condition have no purpose.”
It’s Lupe’s focus on “purposeful” violence that requires a mindful approach to media consumption. Such an approach requires one to ask questions about what is being listened to, watched, read or otherwise ingested. Most would be hard-pressed to do this consistently for a week, let alone an entire year’s time. It’s acutely difficult in the 24-hour news cycle, which is itself cloaked in wanton social-media posts rife with images of violence. Perhaps most admirable about Lupe’s vow is his willingness to give up entirely the music, television and films he grew up with. N.W.A. and Criminal Minded, for example, are presumably off the table.
“But what about your sword Lupe?” We come from different worlds. The things I do seem strange and weird to you because I’m not from the same place you are. The lessons I learned and the things I’ve seen have shaped me different. You may associate the opposite of violence with peace. That is not so to me. The opposite of violence is giving assistance, being helpful or building something. It is an action. Peace is a sense of a state of static being. One can be peacefully violent as one can be violently helpful. Actual Violence has a purpose but most depictions of violence in our modern consumptive condition have no purpose. In regards to my use of the sword: There are two common approaches to the practice of the katana (samurai sword) Satsuninto (the murdering blade) or Katsujinken (the live giving blade) they both refer to the same tool, the sword. However the mentality of each approach is much more different than the other. I aspire toward Katsujinken and I also practice something much deeper called “Kotoba To Ki” where the sword is actually a pen and the cuts are actually pen strokes. What the uninitiated and cloudy mind sees as a series of violent cuts and slashes is actually a poem being written. Do not try to understand this unless you are willing to undertake this. It will only complicate your life. ????????
In his response post, Lupe also addressed his sword. Fans of his will note that he takes an avid interest in swordsmanship, particularly that of Japanese culture. “What the uninitiated and cloudy mind sees as a series of violent cuts and slashes is actually a poem being written,” he argued. He mentions two different forms of blades, one representing death and the other life—Satsuninto (the murdering blade) and Katsujunken (the life-giving blade). On this post, he revoked users’ ability to leave comments.
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It seems Lupe’s inspiration for removing the consumption of egregious violence is a desire to instead embrace peace. As he wrote in his original announcement, “There are so many other narratives in this world that involve peaceful means of cohabitation and expression with humanity and the world at large that deserves attention, absorption and contemplation.” Whether Lupe has plans to document his journey and the peaceful narratives he comes across with his fans remains to be seen.