The spirit-filled Homecoming week usually culminates in the annual SGA Homecoming Concert —but not this year.
Though no official explanation has been given concerning the blank space on the homecoming itinerary where the student-funded concert should be, 2010 is as good a time as any to fill that void with a more noble purpose.
Last year’s homecoming concert was, in keeping with cultural jargon, an epic fail. Key to its downfall was poor promotion and the lack of consensus between the student body and the 39th Student Senate over who should headline the event.
The subject of last year’s contention: rapper Gucci Mane.
This year, the proposed acts for the concert included, among many other shameful acts, rapper Wacka Flocka Flame.
Juaquin Malphurs, whose stage name is reminiscent of a Muppet character, was supposed to be one of the main acts for the concert. Thankfully, the concert has been called off for reasons that are still not very clear. But the fact that Malphurs was even slated to perform shows poor judgment, once again, by the SGA.
Malphurs’ presence would a present a slew of paradoxes that counters the university’s mission.
On Monday Sept. 6, the functionally illiterate rapper appeared on 106th and Park, a music video countdown show that airs at 6 p.m. on BET. During the interview, he demonstrated that he is just as juvenile in an interview setting as he is lyrically.
When asked about his views on education he responded: ” education big bruh [sic], even though the biggest thing I ever did was drop-out,” said Malphurs. What about voting? “Voting cool, you ‘posed [sic] to really get into it.”
Malphurs gets credit for his claim that he votes regularly, although his presumably gold-filled mouth, criminal record and poor vernacular suggests otherwise in some circles.
Truth is, this university or any other HBCU can’t afford to invite the likes of Malphurs to student-funded events and it should be easy to see why not. As administrators painstakingly work to recruit more black males, the presence of a negative influence such as Malphurs would certainly counter that goal.
What’s more disheartening about Malphurs’ solicitation is that many students are not far removed from the lifestyle he touts in his lyrics. To invite him or any other rappers that promote blatant tomfoolery is downright insulting to those here for the sole purpose of escaping that type of existence.
Since this year’s homecoming concert is supposedly off the schedule, now might be the time for SGA to brainstorm in an effort to replace this event with something more constructive. And because homecoming festivities aren’t necessarily for students, and are, in essence, a university fundraiser, maybe the money for the concert would be better allocated to an elaborate alumni soiree.
Tickets sales and donations made at this event would go toward scholarships and fee-waivers, funding a decent education for the disadvantaged among us. Although this is not the only festivity that could replace the concert, it should be considered since FAMU’s alumni donation rate is still deplorable. If not incentive enough, events like these could persuade current students to donate to their alma mater when they graduate, a noble act indeed if championed by SGA.
Besides, the sometimes superfluous increase of law enforcement and unruly out-of-towners frighten the locals, giving homecoming a bad rap. That is, until it is discovered how much money Tallahassee generates from FAMU around homecoming.
In retrospect, the concert hasn’t featured a single savory act in years. Perhaps its cancellation was a godsend, a signal that change is long overdue on the Hill.