Dr. Umar Johnson recently sat down with VladTV and offered up his thoughts on education and the African American community, as well as his plans to open up his own school.
When asked about why he thinks that education isn’t celebrated in hip-hop, Dr. Umar Johnson told DJ Vlad that an emphasis isn’t put on education in the African American communities in general, especially for boys. He added that he started caring about black history after taking a mandatory class in elementary school, and later learning that he was related to Frederick Douglass during his first family reunion.
During the sit-down, Dr. Johnson revealed that he’s planning to name his residential academy after his famous ancestor, Douglass, and Marcus Garvey. While he doesn’t have the exact location acquired yet, Dr. Johnson said that he knows the student body will be 100% compromised of black students. However, he added that he couldn’t advertise the school as being exclusively for black children, although there are schools for LGBT children.
While many people were upset with the lack of diversity at this year’s Oscars, Russell Simmons is looking at the bigger picture and he told VladTV that there needs to be more diversity in all of Hollywood. The famed business magnate explained that there are no Black people running companies, which he believes is a big problem.
During the conversation the Def Jam co-founder spoke about the lack of Black comedians since Def Comedy Jam left HBO. He explained that the show gave a lot of Black comedians an opportunity that wasn’t there before, and Russell added that while Kevin Hart is a huge name today, he says that Hollywood wanted nothing to do with him at first.
Check out more topics that we covered with Russell in the above clip, including his thoughts on Stacey Dash, and much more.
– Mopreme Shakur, rapper and older step-brother to the late Tupac Shakur, recently sat down with VladTV and spoke about what drove ‘Pac to work so hard in the studio and what it means to hear his music today.
“It makes it easier to deal with him not being here,” Mopreme responded when asked about how he feels when he hears 2Pac’s music. “You smile because he did everything he said he was going to do.”
“It was just a shame we lost him so early,” Mopreme continued. “But I think in the spiritual realm – his inner clock – he knew he was gonna go early.”
Watch the clip to hear more from a somber Mopreme about his step-brother’s sense that death was not far off, and how it motivated him to work harder than everyone else to get his message out.