During an interview in Washington last week, [Sister Souljah]'s empathy for the rioters reached a chilling extreme. Forget the statistics emerging on the racial variety of looters and people who died. Forget the economic motives of those who plundered stores. To Souljah, this was a black-on-white "rebellion," plain and simple and righteous.
"Whoever wants to speak to young people will have to come through the corridor of hip-hop," says Sister Souljah, whose debut album, "360 Degrees of Power," came out last month. Born Lisa Williamson twentysomething years ago, she was a New York community activist and established public speaker before launching her rap career under the auspices of Public Enemy, standard-bearers of hip-hop's militant wing. As rap has grown in popularity among black and white listeners, offering everything from cute kids (Kris Kross) to professing Christians (Hammer) to raunchy comedians (2 Live Crew), political rappers have come to be considered its conscience.
PHOTO,,Nancy Andrews; PHOTO,,AP; PHOTO,,Fred Sweets; PHOTO,,ABC; Ph,,Dayna Smith CAPTION: Rapper Sister Souljah strikes a revolutionary pose: "I make it for black young people so that they can understand that we are at war." CAPTION: Rapper Sister Souljah on the L.A. riots: "I mean, if black people kill black people every day, why not have a week and kill white people? You understand what I'm saying?" CAPTION: [Chuck D] of Public Enemy: Souljah's mentor and standard-bearer of hip-hop's militant wing.
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