A Minute with Maj Toure
by Bryan Carter
Maj Toure and Bryan Carter
I remember when you posted a status a couple years ago about a Solutionary Lifestyle. Can you one, explain what a solutionary lifestyle is and am I capable of becoming one (laughing)? Absolutely. Everyone is capable of being a solutionary. There are three basic tenets to that: helping, healthing and wealthing, which ties into the money piece: helping meaning, you have to do something actively that is going to help somebody else and that you get nothing from other then “that guy needed lunch, so I paid for it. So, next week, you gotta get me one”. No, that’s not helping. Healthing is watching what your body, watching what you put in your mind and your spirit. You have to go to the gym! You have to work out, get your cardio on, just being healthy because that’s another angle where we’ve been conditioned to fall short. Wealthing is the financial piece of it. It’s a pyramid: helping, healthing and wealthing. Kanye West tweeted “If you don’t have your money right, there’s a chance your family can be taken from you”. Think about that. If you’re money isn’t right, there’s a chance your family, the only real thing, can be taken from you. To a person going up the thought process of manhood and womanhood, that’s a scary thought. So, I have to get my money right. That’s really what the solutionary lifestyle is about; making that an active process 70% or your day or more: who am I helping, am I being helpful right now with my words, deeds, etc. and am I getting paid.
I recall a number of times where we sat down and just talked about stuff. We’ve known each other for a while now, at least 5 years. Those talks, advice sessions, mentor sessions as I call them, are they things that you do everyday? Everyday. I ran into a youngin a couple years ago while I was selling things outside. I’ll see a group of young guys “hey, what are yall doin? How old are you, 8? I’ll give this to you for free if you can answer this math problem. Oh, word?” I ran into this guy and he’s like 19 now. When I saw him, he might have been about 12. “Aww man, I remember you giving me the”, that’s what we have to do. It’s a lifestyle. It’s not a luxury. Luxury is when it’s every now and then. A lifestyle is when you’re life can’t live without it. There are certain people who as so wealthy that a Benz is their lifestyle. I don’t understand anything other than leather. It’s opportunities every day for us to sit down and do that. So yeah, mentorship, giving them games, jewels, whichever way it’s going to be presented, I’m going to present it.
For me, music, I call it noise therapy. It’s something that I can keep getting involved with like I listen to Japanese Hip Hop and Jazz. People are always asking me where do you come up with this stuff. Like you said, it’s the information we surround ourselves with and begin desiring. With Solutionary 4, what additional themes cane we expect to be a part of it along with womanhood, manhood, community, and politics? Violence. I am an active proponent of violence. I am not nonviolent. With all the attacks that are happening, they’re murders. That’s what they are. They are murders by corrupt, ex-police officers because once you start handling things like a thug, you’re no longer a police officer to me; you’re a criminal, a terrorist. With all the violence that’s being accosted towards us, we need to start being violent in return. I do not believe in turning the other cheek. I do not believe in praying or protesting. It just seems silly to me to pray to a god about an atrocity to an atrocity that allowed it to happen in the first place. Solutionary 4 is going to have a lot more practical ways to be violent, ways to be violent and get away with it, determine if something needs to be violent or I’m out, there’s no need to even get involved with whatever is going on. It’s more about changing the thought process from the victim mentality to being the aggressor because there are no victims, just willing participants. If I’m the aggressor, I’m going to define this issue and that can be aggressive and violent. We’re in America; this entire place was build on violence.
The situations with our male counterparts: Trayvon Martin, Freddie Gray, and Michael Brown; have they shaped a lot of these themes in Solutionary 4? I can take this shit back to Mumia, to Malcolm. People say because you’re violent, you’re going to die violent. Ghandi got shot. Dr. King was murdered, violently. So, it’s a laundry list of names. Mumia is still locked up for something that dam near happened four years ago. Now we’re in a space where we need to get some of that mental baggage off of us. Like, you should have a license to carry. You should have a fire arm. Gun legislation is a direct off shoot of when our ancestors were made free, per say. “We can’t let them have guns”. That’s where all gun control comes out of. Really, this is about training people to be a little bit more violent about things that’s theirs. I’m willing to die for mine, and kill for it too because I want to live for mine.
As a writer, fly on the wall, a reporter, that’s something that I grapple with: are we trying to get funky with it? We think about our approaches when we’re none violent, we don’t really get the response. It took Martin Luther King 13 years to get some of these laws passed. I always ask myself, what would have been different had we been violent? Well, there two things to that. One, it wasn’t a civil rights movement, it was a consumer rights movement. Money stays in the hood. They were like hey, look, money is kinda tight. These businesses you would normally see in the hood to support, now that money is going somewhere else. That’s not a badge of honor for me. A badge of honor is protecting yours for 89 to 100 years and your people got theirs and their empire is built. The other thing is, why am I the only one being told not to be violent. Why am I getting the most scrutiny for using violent aggression? That’s like telling an artist, you’re supposed to be a starving artist. It’s a game. I don’t have that type of time Dr. King had. I’m not waiting 13 years. That shit is too long. I get the spiritual practice of things, but there has to be something behind the words. That’s where I rest at. That’s my space. Don’t call me until it’s time to do some shit. Other than that, I will support your energetically, financially, and spiritually. Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, that’s our brothers. They were none violent. If you mess with them, we’re going to mess with you.