Hip Hop Lets the Mentally Excluded Speak Part 2
America may have mentally excluded its children for two decades, but Generation Y has made it back to the center of public consciousness. Last week I spoke on the critical perspective of Kendrick Lamar–a partial result of the psychiatry and education partnership that eliminates children from “normal” life”. Evidently, marking Kendrick for the margins was a defective diagnosis; considering his demonstration of the inadequacies of American institutions. Resistance against the divisive authority of education and psychiatry return this week with the flow of Hopsin. This emcee from Cali approaches beats with a vicious delivery and criticism that no one is safe from.
In the Ill Mind of Hopsin 4, he embodies the symbols that classically represent the performance of “special ed behavior”: the helmet, the t-shirt that is backwards and inside-out, and the facial expression that signals something gone wrong. He provokes the discretion of psychiaty by displaying, in the moment of the video, an exceptional functionality after being marked as an abnormal personality.
Perhaps teaching black kids a history that situates them at the bowels of the system facilitates the illusion of students with learning disabilities. The clinic has a jurisdiction that consults the standards of education systems. These standards impose a standard on students that only resembles the image of a normal white student.
I mean lets take another look at Ill Mind of Hopsin 4; the title alone is a homophone that in one nuance reflects ownership of the “mentally ill” label; in another connotation, ill means oddly raw/genius. The song leads one to wonder what tremendous myths, “the special ed kid at lunch time the b*tches wouldn’t stand around”, had to be acknowledged by Hopsin. There’s little doubt that the special ed status signifies that an individual will live primarily in “special” spaces that are removed from the realms of culture, literature, even sports.
Elementary math, for instance, may not have meant anything to young Hopsin and therefore could be interpreted as an inability to understand. That doesn’t mean, however, that he has abnormal learning faculties; clearly, Hopsin can analyze the popular objects of culture that exceeds the capacity of an average person. I would argue that his superhumyn criticism is what gives his videos a frightening and other worldly flavor.