If you watched Ice Cube’s movie Fist Fight then you can easily draw a direct connection to his critique of Bill Maher. In the movie Ice Cube’s character wanted the fight to have a teachable moment. Likewise, Ice Cube used most of his time on Bill Maher’s show to send a message to viewers. Being comfortable with a particular race doesn’t allow for slander. Even if the slander is indirect, it’s not allowed.
This notion of correct behavior is not about the justification of a person’s rights or free speech. It is about understanding that we have a society of different individuals. Within a society the goal is the common good. The greater the common good, the greater the society and the members within.
Use the family unit as an example. The stronger it becomes, the stronger the members are as well. To achieve this each family member will need to control their behavior, what they say, and how it’s said. This takes emotional growth, implementation, self-assessment and self-reflection.
The film Fist Fight and Bill Maher’s show isn’t the first time Ice Cube wanted to send a larger message. Many of Ice Cube’s raps are geared this way too, though more along the lines of police injustice, which falls in line with his latest rap titled Good Cop Bad Cop.
Raising Awareness is Not Enough
What are the results of Ice Cube’s approach to raising awareness for injustice? On Bill Maher’s show he stated that the only change in 25 years was just the date. This is due to the fact that awareness alone does not bring substantial results for systematic change. First comes awareness, then comes a strategic course of actions for long-term change. It’s like raising awareness to eat right to avoid early death – it usually goes in one ear and out the other. A series of strategic actions have to happen.
Two Strategies for Change
With action there are two strategies. The first will change or create new policies. Using bad cops as an example, the recruitment of new officers, on-going training, time off and reconditioning are the new policies. The second involves human efforts. The strategy to grow and become competent as a human being. A competent human being is emotionally mature. Their desires are in check and well managed. This allows for good decision-making for themselves and for others.
Give the Effort
Any type of result takes a certain amount of effort. The greater the result, the greater the effort. We shouldn’t shy away from this; instead, we must take it head on. This type of effort is what we Americans pride ourselves on. With great effort comes great reward. Ice Cube and those like him aim to draw awareness. It is up to us to complete the process. Many have already started. We just have to continue moving forward.
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