Bashir Akinyele: “We are the Children of Rap and Crack”


By Bashir Akinyele


After watching the documentary, Freeway: Crack in the System, a movie about how the United States government used a black man named Freeway Ricky Ross to distribute tons of crack in the African American community, I thought about the millions of African American lives lost and destroyed by the devastation of the crack pandemic in America during the 1980’s. Although some black leaders, progressives, community activists, and investigative journalists believed that there was a government conspiracy to sell crack in the African American community to secretly finance the selling of arms to Iran and finance anti-communist forces in Latin America, crack seemed to come out of nowhere. Like a cancer, this destructive drug began to eat away at the foundation in the African American community.

Here are some facts about crack and the African American community. During the 80’s, crack became the primary drug of choice amongst African American addicts. Crack caused the high incarceration rates of black men in this country. This street drug led to the breakdown of black families. There were, and are, thousands of black babies born addicted to crack.  Because of this drug, black youth began to drop out of schools in large numbers to become crack dealers. Crack created high levels of abnormal senseless community violence never before seen in the annals of the history of Africa America.

In conclusion, whether or not you believe in a government conspiracy to sell crack in the African American community, or this movie glorifies the real Freeway Rick Ross, the fact of the matter is that crack destroyed the lives of black people in America. Watching the film, Freeway: Crack in the System, will give you a window into how destructive crack was to the African American community.

This film will be aired on Al -Jazeera TV in 2015.

Bashir Akinyele


-Community Activist

-Co-producer and Co-host of All Politics Are Local, America’s #1 political hip hop radio show

908 956-3523


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