November 4th, in an off-the-cuff moment, a reporter addressed Method Man inquiring about his perspective on the links between countless deaths of hip-hop artists and the culture. Method’s response was pointed and timely.
Takeoff’s Death: The Impact
Breaking news of Takeoff’s death caught the world by surprise. The community was still recovering from the passing of PnB Rock, who also lost his life to gun violence. Knowing that the culture lost two promising artists in less than two months was hard to swallow. The community as a collective had a lot to reflect on.
In the most typical fashion, several artists poured out their hearts to the public, displaying a range of emotions, from raw anger to devastation.
— Lecrae (@lecrae) November 1, 2022
rest in peace, Takeoff. i cannot wrap my brain around this one. 💔🕊
— CHIKA 🌪 (@oranicuhh) November 1, 2022
RIP Takeoff 💔💔💔
my heart is broken
— Chlöe (@ChloeBailey) November 1, 2022
Rip Takeoff… this shit has to STOP… sending love to friends and family 🕊🙏🏾
— Ja Rule (@jarule) November 1, 2022
Unfortunately, such events rub raw emotions and bring up unwanted questions. In the wake of Takeoff’s death, one pointed question reared its ugly head once again. Is hip-hop culture to be blamed? As this ideology seemed to gain prominence, the media looked to other artists within the industry for clarity. Method Man was one artist who was asked to offer a perspective.
Method Man On Hip Hop Culture And Violent Deaths
A day ago, Method man was accosted and inquired about his position on the link between Hip hop culture and the upheaval in violent deaths. Method Man wasn’t particularly keen on engaging in the subject. But he didn’t outright withhold his opinion, either. When asked if he felt anything had changed since the early days of hip-hop, a bewildered Method jokingly added, “Yea, the clothes.” But, of course, there was a deeper subtext to the reporter’s questioning. And, when pressed for a more definitive response regarding his feelings on the link between hip-hop and the countless death of rap artists, Method made it clear.
“I have no opinion about shootings and how they happen because the circumstances always point to hip-hop, and it’s not always our fault, period.”
What Does Method Man’s Response Show?
While it is rational for people to seek answers for unfathomable things in the wake of unexpected tragedy, it’s best not to ask specific questions for some time. There is a time and place for everything. As artists like Method have shown, perhaps their perspective is not the most pertinent at this moment.
Indeed, there is great fatigue around a line of questioning that does not separate correlation from causation. And what comes of the opinion of those who have spoken but more speculation and frustration?
So this raises the question, would not time be more appropriately spent directing energies toward support and reflection at this time? And given that, is it not of more significant benefit to shift focus to acts such as those shown by 50 Cent?
Curtis Jackson’s (50 Cent) Message To Quavo
In exemplary fashion, Curtis Jackson, who is making strides to be a change in the world via his BMF docuseries, reached out to Take-Off’s family to offer his condolences. In addition, Jackson took the time to pour into Quavo in a time of unspeakable grief. The industry icon even went on to provide a suggestion for maintaining Takeoff’s legacy. His advice:
This is really how it goes @quavohuncho you have to position this Album correctly for Take Offs Legacy, go make a couple changes and address everything all artist make the best music out of painful moments. R.I.P to pop smoke 🕊R.I.P to TakeOff #bransoncognac #lecheminduroi
Of course, Fifty is not the only one who has taken the time to build up, show love, and honor the memory of Takeoff and the countless others who have fallen.
Takeoff’s death was inane. Inarguably, there is no justifiable cause. And today, because of another senseless act of violence, there is a hole in the heart of hip-hop. The culture as a collective is in mourning.
Undoubtedly, the time will come to address the systemic rot. An issue such as this is too pervasive to go unaddressed. However, there is a season, time, and place for everything. It may not be the time to ask or focus on individualized opinions and perspectives. Today might be a time for unity, light, love, and collective healing.
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Written by Renae Richardson