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The Side Eye: 50 Cent Rants, Central Africa the New Vietnam, Gay Rights in Zimbabwe and More

The ‘Side eye’ is the facial response given to people, events, or actions that are silly and ridiculous. Side Eye Stories will summarize instances that we can’t be bothered to write a long-form response to, but wanna express our skepticism towards. Without further ado, here are this week’s picks:


50 Cent recently ranted on his Facebook page about the poor response to his Street King energy drink project that aims to feed hungry kids in Africa. He wrote: "The world is so f***** up. People don’t seem to care anymore." Here are some reasons why people don't care about Street King: it's whack to use a song about murder to promote saving lives, it's also whack for 50 to rant about companies making profits while he's capitalizing on a 'charitable' product, and last but not least, we're still side-eyeing him after that Chinua Achebe debachle.

And a ton more, after the jump.

Despite being one of the longest running conflicts in Africa, Joseph Kony only recently became a household name when President Obama sent 100 U.S. troops into Central Africa to 'advise' the Ugandan military in its fight against the Lord's Resistance Army. This week Assistant Defense Secretary Alexander Vershbow said the deployment has no timeline and could last months. Does this sound familiar? In 1955 President Eisenhower sent advisors to train South Vietnamese troops to fight communists in what led to decades of war. The LRA is not nearly the threat communism was but it's been suggested that Obama's move to finally squash Joseph Kony is just a pretext for the United State's fight against al Qaeda in the region. Btw, we realize that drawing parallels between Central Africa and the Vietnam War is more scary than side eye.

Last year the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, Morgan Tsvangirai, rejected calls to add gay rights to the constitution. However, this week he told the BBC that he would defend gay rights if he became president - even suggesting that they be added to a new constitution. His change of heart seems to come out of left field, but we will revoke our side eye if he sticks to his guns on this issue.

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Watch this trailer for Mass Destruction and dare tell us that you don't love Nollywood.

Check out previous side eye stories here, here, and here.

 

Interview

Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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