Nipsey Hussle: A voice for good in a world full of evil
Grant DelVecchio | Tuesday, April 9, 2019
On March 31, the world lost a powerful voice for change when 33 year-old hip-hop artist Nipsey Hussle was gunned down in front of the Marathon Clothing in his hometown, Los Angeles. Hussle leaves behind two kids and hundreds of thousands of people whose lives he touched in his short time on Earth.
I can not even begin to describe the wave of sadness that came over me when I scrolled through Twitter and saw people tearing down Hussle’s name and legacy because he was just another “thug” using music to get ahead or because he was a former gang member who got what was coming to him. What makes Hussle’s death different than any other rapper’s? He was someone actively striving to change the harsh reality people both old and young face on a daily basis in South LA, and he was succeeding in doing so.
Hussle provided children growing up in similar circumstances as his own with a role model who knows what it’s like to come up from nothing, and he completely flipped the conception that people who live exemplary lives do so by being perfect.
Hussle was so in the moment in his goodness, and his work should be the example of what we all look to when trying to better our communities. There’s a difference between acquiring wealth and donating a building with one’s name on it versus actually reforming an entire community by tackling the issues it faces in the now.
Far more than being just a Grammy-nominated rapper, Hussle was an entrepreneur in his own community, actively working to create economic growth and monetize connections between tech spaces and inner-city kids. While it is increasingly common for people to abandon their neighborhoods upon the first taste of money or fame, Hussle did the exact opposite, and his legacy as a community builder within South LA is just as important as his career in hip-hop.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.