What Is Gangsta?

by Incarcerated Flavors

Let’s try and come to the conclusion of what makes a person a gangsta. Growing up, gangsta meant big guns, big cars, big rims, flashy jewels, and a bad chick. Let’s not forget the work that you put in. Bullets flying and gun smoke mixed with the aroma of death. You had to be as cold hearted as possible. If compassion was part of your make up, your gangsta persona would definitely be tested, by yes, another gangsta.

Was I a gangsta ? By hood terms, yes, I was. A certified bad boy. I was shaped and molded by the best of them, ran with the rest of them, and tested anyone who wasn’t apart of this mix. As a young gangsta, I played the game under the impression that the game would never play me. Money, murder and mayhem. A young gansgta without a conscious.

Today, I still feel the rough texture of stacks on top of stacks, as I counted the daily wads of cash I believed only a gangsta could make. Rubberbands stretched to their capacity, pockets bugling with new 50′s and year old hundreds. Today, I still smell the stench of my hood’s back blocks and the pungent aroma of gun smoke. The trickles of blood splattered throughout the prison’s corridors don’t bother me, as I know them, and have known them for years.

A certified gangtsa…..never the “gangsta who believes that being a gangsta is defined in the way you walk, the way you talk, where you’re from, or who you know; but the type of gangsta who knew and knows that even when the world wasn’t/isn’t watching his actions made/makes him a “G”.

In the 80′s gangsta’s sported velour sweatsuits, Dapper Dan outfits and Fila kicks. In the 90′s gangstas rocked corduroys, Lee jeans, Champion hoodies, Girbaud jeans, and Timberland boots. The 2000′s gangsta donned button ups, Omavi jeans, and Burberry attire…..Today, gangstas casually stroll in and out of business offices in tailor made suits and Prada hard bottoms. So, what is gangsta ?

Many “gangstas” I see every day, trapped here with me, wish that the terminology “GANGSTA” was never born. Gangsta is a state of mind. Gangsta when viewed in ignorance is a recipe for disaster. It’s cool to be a gangsta, but, today, most want to be the type of gangsta who’s free to walk the streets and doesn’t have to worry about dodging bullets and cops. See, I’m a gangsta. Won’t move and won’t budge, but I’m the type of gangsta who sees life today through a different lens. I slanged, I banged, I hit, and I hit hard, but does any of this make me a gangsta ?

I earned my keep in the streets. 33 years of stink as I bathed in the muddy waters of the game. Through it all, I learned:

A real gangsta is decided by principle, integrity, morals, and an uncompromising will when it comes to planting ten toes on the RIGHT ground. Keep your pistols, your pills, your Porsches, and show up a gangsta against pressure. Show up a gangsta with a business mind and a militant grind, strapped with code of ethics that will build tomorrow, as opposed to destroying it. NOW THATS GANGSTA !
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