Let's hear it, one for the coons on UPN 9 and WB
Who 'Yes Massa' on TV, what ever happened to Wheezy? The Red Fox's?
Never got Emmy's but were real to me
Let's hear it, two for the spooks who do cartwheels
'Cause they said they played they parts well
Now they claim caviar, hate that oxtail
Lambda Sigma Phi badge on lapel
Whitey always tell him, "Ooh, he speak so well"
Are you the one we look to, the decent Negro?
The acceptable Negro -- hell nah
But they say, "These are our heroes"

One of Nas’s lesser known works, Coon Picnic focuses on what he viewed as coonery by blacks in contemporary media. Nas ends the chorus with the words, “These are our heroes,” in a sarcastic tone, pointing out the obvious flaws of those who are looked up to within the black community. Several colleagues reacted to this song when it came out, questioning Nas’s right to say anything about this topic at all. This is the same man that rapped on “Oochie Wallie” and along with Ginuwine said “Owe me back like 40 acres to blacks, Pay be back when you shake it like that,”-- points that will forever be his Achilles heel. Nas even realizes this point on his own song including a heckler at the end who derides the rapper for flaunting his wealth while making these comments.

After obviously attacking Kobe Bryant for his relations with white women who are of questionable status (a hotel worker and a former “video actress*”) in the first verse, and ranting some more, Nas starts blatant name calling towards the end, and called out Cuba Gooding Jr.

Now I’m calling him out as well, and his brother Omar is included: Let’s get it together people.

My beef with the Gooding brothers, as highly irrelevant as they may seem to be today, is not the same as that of Nas. I’m not as pre-occupied with them being “acceptable” as I am with them being as foolish as the foolish Galatians. They need to be smacked, hard, and then someone needs to smack their agents.

There have always been people that begin with promise before their career takes a turn fir the worse, but in the case of these brothers, their trajectory is a hair short of a low down and dirty shame. Lesser blame should be placed on Omar Gooding, since he obviously did not have the good fortune of his brother. Although riding on Cuba’s coat tails, his most memorable works are Hanging with Mr. Cooper, Smart Guy and Baby Boy. There was no golden role available for him to jumpstart his career. From there he went on to have some more supporting roles in movies like The Gospel, but also relies on episodes in an assortment of shows to stay relevant. It’d be one thing if he just moved on, but since he’s still trying, he needs to get it together. Omar is not exactly leading man material—he does not have the looks and has not shown the capability to do so, but he could make a solid supporting actor/television career, if he and his agent worked it out.

Cuba Gooding is a different story altogether. Despite what may have been witnessed in The Fighting Temptations (a movie I happen to like), he possesses talent and skill at his craft. Jerry McGuire and Boyz n the Hood are evidence of the brilliant work that he can do. But dear dear Cuba seems to have a problem with not taking roles. His IMDB roster leads one to think that his agent’s advice is to do every movie placed in front of you—leading to less than stellar works such as Daddy Day Care. After acting in Pearl Harbor and Men of Honor, Cuba Gooding then proceeded to star in Rat Race, Snow Dogs and Boat Trip. Although these movies may have taken in a decent amount at the box office, they only lessen his value as an actor. With each new commercial for an upcoming Cuba Gooding Jr., film , a roll of the eyes and queasiness is to be expected. These roles are acceptable for Ice-Cube, but not for someone with obvious talent and who is primarily an actor. Cuba, you and your agent are being called out for accepting stupid roles. Absence makes the heart grown fonder, and a few years could have gone by before American Gangster, which premieres later this fall, and an adoring fan base would have waited. Instead, you receive mumbled hallelujahs and silent prayers that your other works currently in production are well made, sensible films. Dabble in the goofy, but do it sensibly. This is my call out. And no…the Nas song don’t really got much to do wit nething, I just thought it was a song that more people should be aware of.


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