Life of Riley

It’s hard enough to come up on the streets of Oakland, where the pimps come out at night and the whistle pipes go wooo. Now, courtesy of Counterpunch (one hopes to read Cockburn weighing in on Lil’ Wayne or sharing some delightful bon mot from Tariq Ali about Young Jeezy), comes sad news that Boots Riley and the Coup have suffered a bus crash near San Diego. Riley is a black man with a spherical afro, his bus-mates rap tour veterans, and this passel of bloodied Communists were standing by the side of the highway next to a fifty-foot bus in flames and nobody stopped because drivers thought they were Mexican:

For a while no one stopped to help, supposedly because the thought we were “illegal aliens” crossing the border. Eventually some great folks stopped and helped. Silk E has two broken ribs and a punctured lung. Wiz has a broken nose, two deep lacerations to the head, and a shattered knee. Zhara has injuries to her hand and had to undergo surgery. Carter had to get stitches to his head and lip. The driver, Glenn, has a broken jaw.

The full account can be read here. Consider donating to help these underrated rap soldiers get back on their feet. And next time you see a San Diegan who has just suffered an accident, lock the doors and keep driving, because you never know.


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