Harley Geffner has a one-fingered salute for the system.
At just 17 years old, YouFoundForest was shot in the leg outside of his grandma’s house in Compton. It forced him to take a step back to reevaluate what continues to plague the community he calls home. It’s easy to resign to the poverty and violence as a norm. It’s been this way forever, it can feel like this is the way it’ll continue to be forever. Everyday, ghetto birds circle the skies; another homicide victim dead in the streets. Dice games are ubiquitous, dope fiends turn to mummies and as the song states, moms question why funerals are the only time the hood is in suit and ties.
Of course, there’s a systemic factor to it all. Government policies created outside the vantage of these communities hold them down, keeping young black men and women in poverty, prison or the grave. But is there something that can be done about it? Is there a way to stop the cycle of violence?
A white reporter in the interlude questions the motivations behind it all. He asks a Blood what’s in it for him, if he’s willing to die for the cause. “If that’s what it takes,” the man responds. “If somebody ride up on me and take me out, I guess it was my time to go like that.” It just shows how deep the bonds are.
Forest knows there’s more to life than this. More to life than collect calls and burglaries. He comes back to the hood hoping not to get murdered just to deliver his message of hope. He says he’s limited by his options, but still tryna do good. He made an oath to deal with his pain internally, but his homies often take the opposite approach. They re-up the cycle. One of his friends just had his big brother die, so what does he do? He pops a perc and loads the nine with a look in his eyes, ready to cry. The mentality ingrained from the family ties.