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by Dr. Boyce Watkins
Adam “Pacman” Jones of the Cincinnati Bengals has been ordered by a judge to pay $11 million to strip club employees for a shooting that took place in 2007. The judge has forced Jones to “make it rain” on the strip club employees because they were victimized by bullets fired by a man who was shooting on behalf of Pacman.
Tommy Urbanski, a club manager, was paralyzed from the waist down. Aaron Cudworth, a bouncer, was also severely injured. Jones’ attorney, Lisa Rasmussen, has argued that Jones was not behind the shooting.
“It’s obviously a devastating amount for him financially,” Rasmussen said. “He has really worked hard to make a comeback with his NFL career.”
Rasmussen made the point that being an NFL celebrity doesn’t mean that you’re made of money.
“People perceive him as a person who is able to pay $11 million,” she said. “Adam doesn’t even get paid until he plays his first game.”
Richard Shonfeld, the attorney for one of the victims, says that Jones should be held responsible for what happened that night.
“I am pleased that Mr. Jones has finally been held accountable,” Schonfeld said.
Jones’ current NFL salary is $950,000, making an $11 million dollar verdict nearly impossible for him to pay. He has always worked overtime to make his life difficult, as Pacman has watered down his talent with one bad decision after another. Just last January, he had a run-in with police that led to a charge for disorderly conduct, leading to a one year probation and community service.
The story goes that Jones and his entourage became angry after he was pouring out money onto the stage at the strip club and the women were taking money without his permission. Attorneys are saying that Jones met with the shooter, Arvin Kenti Edwards, right before the shooting took place. Edwards is now serving 10 years in prison for his role in the incident.
So, let’s see: Just this week alone, I’ve written about the strip club shooting incident that has cost Pacman Jones $11 million dollars, bottles being thrown during an all-out brawl between the entourages of Drake and Chris Brown and the shooting of two former Auburn University football players at a house party right off campus. And that’s just this week.
I long and pray for the day when I can turn on my computer and not hear another story about a black entertainer or athlete shooting someone, being shot at, or busting bottles upside somebody’s head while trying to “make it rain” at a d**n strip club. Like Pacman, Drake and Chris Brown are also going to end up paying millions for their reckless behavior, and if they are not careful, they may end up paying with their lives.
For some reason, the culture of the black male in America, largely inspired by the b*llshit being spit at us by commercialized hip-hop on the radio (which should be distinguished from real hip-hop), creates a cultural tornado that leads to black men memorizing a carefully-designed blueprint wired to guide them to self-destruction. The blueprint, which can be found in nearly any hip-hop song on the radio, says to: 1) stay high/drunk as much as possible, 2) carry a gun and don’t be afraid to use it, 3) have s*x with everything that moves, 4) waste your money on stupid material possessions, 5) remain ignorant, lazy and uneducated, 6) always show disrespect toward women.
I regularly make this point and I will make it until the day I die: Black men should be better than the buffoons that many of us are training ourselves to become. Also, we must all speak out against this ignorance whenever we see it.
A man does not find success by throwing away his education for an athletic or musical career that will probably never exist. He can’t become a leading scientist, attorney or entrepreneur if he’s wasting every Friday night making it rain at the club. He can’t live a prosperous life if he’s been getting high/drunk every weekend and catching diseases from sleeping with countless women. All of this has distorted what many young boys believe to be the essence of the black male in America, and quite frankly, it’s killing us.
Most of us agree that Pacman Jones is an idiot. What we fail to realize is that dummies like Pacman are being mass produced by commercialized hip-hop culture, and it’s causing millions of young black men to waste their genius trying to bust rhymes, throw footballs, “slang” dope, or engage in otherwise unproductive life choices. This is not saying that hip-hop on the radio is the cause of all the ills in our society, but the glorification of the very worst in us certainly does not help.
If you look at a picture of Pacman, the way he dresses, speaks, and carries himself, you’ll notice that he is a product of hip-hop culture. Any psychologist on earth can tell you that listening to a message repeatedly and reciting toxic mantras nearly every day of your life embeds the message so deeply into your subconscious that even you don’t know that it’s affected you. These mantras impact the way black men treat each other, the way we treat women, the way women respond to men, and the way we live our lives.
As a result, our men end up filling up the penitentiaries, the morgues and the unemployment lines. Then, the dude with tattoos from head-to-toe, gold teeth across his entire grill, slobbering broken vowels and syllables out of his mouth, and pants sagging off his a*s complains that “the white man’s trying to keep him down.” I agree with you brother, the white man is trying to keep you down. But your oppression is a partnership and you have turned yourself into a willing participant. The white man doesn’t have to keep you down if you are choosing to do all the hard work by yourself.
I’ll say this as plainly as I can say it: It’s time to put an end to the nonsense.