"Give me the fortune, keep the fame," said my man Louis I agreed, know what he mean because we live the truest lie I asked him why we follow the law of the bluest eye He looked at me, he thought about it Was like, "I'm clueless, why?" The question was rhetorical, the answer is horrible Our morals are out of place and got our lives full of sorrow And so tomorrow comin later than usual Waitin' on someone to pity us While we findin beauty in the hideous They say money's the root of all evil but I can't tell YouknowhatImean, pesos, francs, yens, cowrie shells, dollar bills Or is it the mindstate that's ill? Creating crime rates to fill the new prisons they build Over money and religion there's more blood to spill The wounds of slaves in cotton fields that never heal What's the deal? A lot of cats who buy records are straight broke But my language universal they be recitin my quotes While R&B singers hit bad notes, we rock the boat of thought, that my man Louis' statements just provoked Caught up, in conversations of our personal worth Brought up, through endangered species status on the planet Earth Survival tactics means, bustin gats to prove you hard Your firearms are too short to box with God Without faith, all of that is illusionary Raise my son, no vindication of manhood necessaryMos Def
...I find it's distressin, there's never no in-between We either niggaz or Kings We either bitches or Queens The deadly ritual seems immersed, in the perverse Full of short attention spans, short tempers, and short skirts Long barrel automatics released in short bursts The length of black life is treated with short worth Get yours first, them other niggaz secondary That type of illin that be fillin up the cemetery This life is temporary but the soul is eternal Separate the real from the lie, let me learn you Not strong, only aggressive, cause the power ain't directed That's why, we are subjected to the will of the oppressive Not free, we only licensed Not live, we just excitin Cause the captors.. own the masters.. to what we writin Not compassionate, only polite, we well trained Our sincerity's rehearsed in stage, it's just a game Not good, but well behaved cause the ca-me-ra survey most of the things that we think, do, or say We chasin after death just to call ourselves brave But everyday, next man meet with the grave I give a damn if any fan recall my legacy I'm tryin to live life in the sight of God's memoryBut there's more to it than just that. My boys would beat me about the head and shoulders if I didn't mention Respiration, which is pure poetry. All these cats talkin about Tupac, they need to check this out.