A good protest song doesn’t generalize. It doesn’t pull punches. Its message is usually political and always controversial. It might not change your mind, but it will force you to recognize that there are people out there—thousands, maybe millions—who feel the way its singer does. Lil Wayne’s scathing critique of George W. Bush and the federal government’s handling of Hurricane Katrina rivals any anti-Vietnam song from the 1960s. “The white people smiling like everything’s cool,” he raps, “but I know people who died in that pool. I know people who died in them schools.” On the song, which appeared on his free Dedication 2 mix tape, he speaks for all the victims of Hurricane Katrina who felt that their country let them down. “So what happened to the levees? Why wasn’t they steady? Why wasn’t they able to control this?” We don’t know, Lil Wayne. We just don’t know.
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