Multi-disciplinary artist, rapper, and writer Senay Kenfe is always sparking dialogue. Just last night, he took the mic during the “What Is Contemporary? Black Lives Matter: Patrisse Cullors and Tanya Lucia Bernard in Conversation” town hall event at MOCA and was fearless as he articulated his anger in light of recent events, voicing sentiments that all others in the room had shied away from in silence (“I am an angry black man”). He even directly interrogated MOCA for their intentions of holding such an event: When the cameras are on, who exactly is profiting from these gatherings? It was a succinct dual critique of both MOCA and Facebook in light of the police murder of Philando Castile, which was live-streamed by his girlfriend Diamond Reynolds on Facebook Live, a mere day after the police killing of Alton Sterling.
Whether Senay’s expertly calling Kylie Jenner out for her appropriation of black culture or creating snapbacks emblazoned with the words “white power” on them as a statement on corporate greed, he’s invested in fruitful thought exchange and discussion. Which is why we were excited to see Senay featured on No Jumper—a wildly popular vlog described as “the coolest podcast in the world” that usually features rappers—where he eloquently dropped truth bomb after truth bomb, even if it seemed, at times, to fall on the completely deaf ears of the hosts.
And though we, as an editorial board, were frustrated at times when No Jumper’s hosts were spewing ignorance and misogyny or were dismissive of Senay’s truths, he actually wasn’t tripping on it. He calmly articulated all of his thoughts—on the Black Lives Matter movement, militarization of the police/police brutality, representing Long Beach, streetwear, and more. (The interview was filmed a few weeks prior to the Alton Sterling and Philando Castile shootings.)
Because his views can be polarizing, already, folks in the YouTube comments section are split between approval/applause and calling Senay ignorant. Regardless of them, he’s starting a dialogue—something he’s always done, and something we’re fortunate to know closely because he’s been occassionally writing for The Hundreds blog for the past two years and continually using whatever platforms he has to educate. Watch and learn something.
Follow Senay on Facebook, Twitter @eclecticnative, and Instagram @nativethoughts.