Be humble. Sit down. Be humble. Sit down. Man this Kendrick album, let me tell you. When I say that this man knows what I need when I need it, it’s always true. TPAB arrived at a dire time as well. Thank you Based King Capri. Speaking of which, I was chatting with my bae-in-training (she gon be in training for a while y’all) today and she mentioned that a friend of hers claimed that K-Deezy was very “Hotep-ey.” Further asking for clarification on what the moniker “Hotep” means, I decide to humor her with my interpretation:
Hotep is generally used as a derogatory term in reference and as a term of empowerment for self-reference. It precludes that the subject in question is “woke.” This wokeness changes depending on who’s using the word. So I’ll go into two different perspectives here.
The outside perspective, the derogatory one, is in the same vein as shitting on someone for being a “SJW” type. Despite the positive and sometimes good intentions of the movement, the subject has perverted the mission for their own personal gain (ego boost, seeming important, elevated etc.)
Specifically with Hoteps, they don’t practice what they preach. They’ll claim to love and embrace all shades of black women, but exclusively date light skin or dark skin or non-black women. There’s no “black reverence” as they preach. They’ll claim “keep the money in the community and don’t give your dollars to the enemy” while they shuck and jive all over Beverly Hills flossing in a late 2000s Mercedes.
They’re quick to shit on someone for not being woke enough or African enough or embracing their “roots” but will be the same one doing the opposite.
Basically they adopt a holier than thou attitude in regards to their blackness. They’re blacker, they’re more rooted, they’re more “woke” than everyone around them because they wear dashikis and listen to Dead Prez and Public Enemy. And think Kendrick is the second coming of Christ because they completely miss the juxtaposition of his imagery and the often satirical snippets in his songs that challenge the very thinking they believe he’s endorsing. They then project their superiority complex onto his work and adopt it.
They also preach black women should go natural in everything, but won’t date these women, citing “that’s not my vision of a black queen.” A lot of hypocrisy and talking out of the ass is core to the characterization of the Hotep perception.
Now for the Hotep that refers to himself as Hotep: He believes that he has a special insight into the plight of the black community and believes that he has the solution to the disparity in our communities. These solutions involve Black Nationalism, isolationism, expressing cultural uniqueness in every aspect of life in the face of a white and anti-black world. Some want to abolish the use of nigga, nigger, and all permutations. Some want black women to cover up and dress more conservatively to express that their bodies are temples and only on display for those they choose in private. Some want us all to renounce processed foods and keep our diets halal/kosher to avoid poisons of the world.
Basically they want to recapture the essence of Africanism and that culture while reverting the brainwashing and conditioning brought upon the community by years white supremacy; going back to basics, if you will. Valiant intentions all the same.
But the common thread in both these perspectives is the notion that being pro-black is not being anti-everything else and I think that’s the message they’re both trying to convey albeit not in the most effective way. There’s also a lot of ignorance in both views. Especially the many unfounded notions that only black women are wearing weaves and hair pieces for instance. There’s a lot of internalized self-hated that fails to get addressed too. It’s a lot, but this is my characterization of it. But as with any movement or thought expression, you’re going to have people that hijack it for their own personal gain while putting others down for not subscribing and that’s where the “hotep ass nigga” phrase is pointing to IMO.
Now this may not be the most comprehensive or succinct (or fair) exploration of this phenomena, but in my defense this was all off the dome. The real question is: In what circumstance is Hotep ever used in reverence? Honestly I can’t think of a situation. A quick Google search tells me that Hotep means “to be at peace” or to be “reconciled.” So basically I’ve been Hotep as shit this entire month, oh baby (#WOKEBAEALERT). But this loose translation is a far cry from the connotation of Hotep, which loosely implies that a person (black male) has read some rinky dink articles on some unscrupulous website about various conspiracy theories that point to the destruction of black people in general. They also get some bright (dumb as fuck) ideas about how black women should conduct themselves. Said person (Hotep nigga) now believes they’ve stumbled on privileged and uncommon information that must be spread to the ignorant masses. Not to mention that anyone who disagrees or asks for credible sources on these claims is an enemy sent by Babylon to silence this person (Hotep Slim).
After a couple cycles of disseminating this information unwarranted and unprovoked via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, Hotep Slim starts to develop a serious case of cognitive dissonance. He is a herald of this new wave of information that preaches against dating outside the race, objectifying black women, protecting black women, and uplifting black women. And we can’t forget investment back into the community, bolstering our pride once again like the old days. But Swaggy H loves big booty bitches, smoking weed, drinking Old English, Henny, and Honey Jack. Why must he give up his collection of Jordans for Jesus sandals? Can he really be tasked to commit to one woman at a time with all this pussy on the table? What is he supposed to do with his fetish for mixed light skin women and thick white women? They know how to suck the soul out of his dick better than any nappy headed hoodrat he’s experienced. Why does it fall to him to lead his people out of the darkness of ignorance? Why can’t Carl do it? That nigga is always preaching about how cursed we are as people (Hi Kendrick).
So Harry Hotep decides to say “Fuck it, I’ma have my cake and eat it too.” So while he’s preaching against degrading his black queens, he’s getting sucked off in alleyways by Beckys behind bars in Bel Air. He knows he’s the crown jewel on the sexual totem pole and nobody will know he’s turning tricks on the Westside. Niggas from the block won’t bother going that far. Now that he’s solidified a working system that satisfies his ego and quells his conscience, it’s back to business. Gotta spread that word and uplift our people.
The above scenario is an obvious caricature (OR IS IT?) that highlights the paradox that a lot of these Hotepians experience. The tenets of this type of thinking look great on paper, but it’s infinitesimally harder in practice. But they don’t want to look like little bitches and back out of enlightenment. I’m no authority as I’ve mentioned, but I’ve spoken with a lot of these types of dudes that try to “put me on” to the trade secrets of the world and the solutions therein. Naturally, they don’t last longer than ten minutes in conversation after I refute every premise and platitude they try to make stick. #HUMBLELYFE (I see you gurrrl) I break them down gently though and reveal that some of them truly just want to seem intellectually valuable up until the point they’re presented with some ass. Hotep Slim turns into Jamal Jenkins just like that.
But it’s interesting to see how they arrive at these conclusions. The very method they employ to justify their hypocrisy is the same logic that is used in justifying white paternal patronage. “Well these people just want to stay savage and ignorant while I’m trying to uplift them. Ungrateful neanderthals! Can’t you see I’m trying to help you better yourselves!? Do you not want my enlightened words of wisdom!? Fine! Stay in the dark you fools, but don’t complain when I rise to the top. I won’t bother to raise any of you fools. My help is a one time deal! A limited time offer! Your lives will be gray without the color of my perspective!”
So many assumptions, so many fucking assumptions. But the the real travesty is the perversion of the Hotepian goals which honestly should not be relegated to memehood. There’s a reason why the black community is behind just about every other ethnic community in the country. The “community” in “black community” has long since been omitted in practice though the word still remains. It’s like a neon store sign that’s neglected to give power to half of the title. You can’t have power in blackness if there’s no power in the community.
Don’t get me wrong, I know many and have witnessed many powerful black individuals get shit done. No argument there. But their work could not be realized solo. They needed the community to come together in some way to complete the mission in totality. So as fun as it is to shit on Hotep Slim and the Woke Woke Gang, it’s counterproductive to the end goal: unity. Instead of berating our good intentioned brothers (and sisters) who may not have the mental faculties to understand the implications and scope of what they want to do, how about those of us that see these crooked arrows correct them? How about those of us that actually have influence and can enact some real political change offer information to these eager souls so they can expend their energy in the right way?
It’s easy to shit on someone, but few have the courage to dust them off. And I’m not saying every Hotepian is worthy of an audience and will be open to correction. There’s a real market for scumbags that utilize this characterization for their own personal gain. There’s also a market for people that get off to seeing these types of people out in the world and seek live that “woke” fantasy. So scrutiny will be required, no questions on that end. But I’m not that jaded to believe that most of these people aren’t just looking for ways to fix our situation in this fucked up world.
America’s psychopathic obsession with the black body, black essence, and the black soul is something that aliens are going to be fascinated by in the millennia to come. She really is the crazy ex-girlfriend that always wants to fuck me and kill me at the same time. But somehow, some way, I make it out alive. Only to hear her cursing me out and crying about how happy she is I’m alive. Then she kisses me while driving a shiv into my side.
This whole Hotep thing, holier than thou, woke, and other phenomena that evoke feelings of enlightenment are really just the collective fatigue of the black community. I’m tired, y’all tired, he tired, she tired, we tired. This shit has been going on too long honestly. And there’s no clear end in sight. There’s a chorus of people, deities, and entities claiming that it’s all going to pass. In my heart of hearts, I believe this. Things have certainly improved over the last couple hundred years. But hope and faith without unified action is about as effective as wishing Hotep Slim would stop sharing anti-weave posts. Nigga it’s just hair. You not gon pull out if the wig flies off. Better caress her bald-ass noggin. Because if you don’t, ♪ I willllll ♪