Miami Urban Beach Week: A Genealogy of Gang Movements

by Martin W. Williams
File under: Fake Freedom24 May 2013 14:47 EDT

This Memorial Day weekend kicks off Miami Urban Beach Week, a spring street festival geared toward individuals that identify with what may be termed 'urban lifestyles'. The gathering made national news this week for the Iraq-style security apparatus that's been put in place to keep tight control over the proceedings. Your relaxed weekend on the beach comes complete with processing through an array of command and control computers, including license plate readers and infrared scanners. 

The most incredible thing about all this security theater is that the people attending Urban Beach Week aren't nearly the military style force of guerillas one might expect to warrant such treatment. You might call this treatment Orwellian, but that wouldn't entirely make sense, because nothing occurring at Urban Beach Week is in any way resisting or challenging the establishment. Though these people may dress like they belong to a 'ghetto' counterculture, it is an entirely fake one that's been co-opted by the music and fashion industry, which sells them the image while castrating them in reality. 

You would think that Urban Beach Week was some kind of radical political convention to merit this scrutiny, but quite to the contrary, bling, women, cars, and partying are the focus of the day- the complacent materialism of people that are supposed to be dangerous threats to society. Check out as much as you can of this tribute to the cheap commercialization that's made the ghetto a commodity, and a threat only to itself: 

This is the essence of Fakenation. Instead of promoting a genuine image of these underprivileged people overcoming their social circumstances through their integrity and perseverance, the urban media promotes more and more unsustainable, unaffordable, unconscionable hedonism. However much they may be used to scare white populations into more police militarism, these people are primarily a threat to each other, and the statistics agree. The culture of celebrity and brand name shopping has turned what were once organized movements into slaves to the media and fashion labels, who sit comfortably while the peasants kill each other to buy the newest pair of Nike shoes.

But was it always this way? Many of us younger people might think so, but really the notion of a separatist black subculture that has today become this 'urban lifestyle' joke began with movements that had a cause and purpose, like the Black Panthers. Now while we at Fakenation don't endorse their militarism or socialism, and think that their violent approach contributed to their downfall and decay into the amoral street gangs of the present day, at least they stood for something. They wouldn't endorse being treated like second-class citizens by Miami Beach Police, or accept the media-promoted caricatures of themselves.

Ironically, the Black Panthers began with the mission to police the police. Today, none of their descendants seem to care that they are marched around like cattle, stripped of the rights and dignity men like Huey P. Newton fought to protect.

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