Midpoint, summer 2014. The number! Another summer! Get down—sounds like a fuckin' bummer. Another genocide, another war raging or brewing, another plane goin' dine. And on our side of things—another meme, another ratchet Worldstar distraction. Where we at? When Public Enemy dropped "Fight the Power," hiphop's anger was aligned with worldwide struggle in a way that felt powerful, fiery, transformative. We learned about South African apartheid and watched that shameful chapter end. Now all our anger, our interests, and our camera phones are aimed only at ourselves. Apartheid rides again, and Palestinian children are being blown to pieces by our best pal Israel, and we're not hearing anybody of national note—well, save Waka Flocka—saying a motherfucking thing about it. Athletes are editing themselves; journalists are getting canned for doing their jobs. People love to complain about "hand-wringing," but they don't give a fuck about all the necks getting wrung. Just like all those people who didn't care when ours were getting shoved into nooses—like, don't you kinda wish there'd been more of that other type of person around back then?

Okay: There's the Capitol Hill Block Party this weekend...

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