Get Rich or Die Tryin’

There is much to lament about this formula, of course.

It speaks to a sentiment of unrestrained and unapologetic greed.

Moreover, it valorizes this sentiment as the only basis for life’s endeavors.

No apparent concern is shown for the fact that even if you succeed in getting rich this in no way insures that anyone else in the world will fare any better as a result.

Do we really need one more rich person?

How many poor people are necessary to support even one rich one?

Is this really all that we can desire: material comfort and excess for oneself without giving a damn for anyone else?

I hope not.

I know all this, and yet still, sometimes I think to myself:

“Get rich or die trying.”

At times, that formula seems the most eloquent expression of my frustrations.

It’s not that I want to be rich.

I don’t.

But I think I want what that little adage really means,

what its intensity succeeds at expressing,

though the content is in no way explicit.

The deeper desire is not useless wealth and luxury of the kind extolled on commercial-music videos and music video-commercials.

Who needs such things?

We want them so badly only because we don’t really need them.

No, the deeper desire is:

to have a place

to exist

for oneself

a place that cannot be taken away

in which you can grow and wane

live and die

however you see fit

and not according to the dictates

of a myopic society

a mismanaged economy

and a bankrupt culture.

I think that’s what 50 means.

He’s just got a funny way of saying it.

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About 11again

Used to be an academic... now I'm a washed up academic. I like cooking, blues music, black writers, and morally compromised people of all persuasions.
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