Late Night With Jimmy Fallon - Season 5

Celebrating The Fact That We Made It

Making it to the age of 25 is a big deal for black males- shit’s not guaranteed. The odds are against us from the jump. We’re growing up in fatherless homes, lacking real structure, surrounded by unnecessary violence, and not getting the proper education. This does not apply to every black male walking the earth, some of us are lucky enough to grow up in a two parent homes that promote education, but most of us are not. Now that it’s February, also known as Black History Month, and I approach 25 years of age, I can’t help but recognize my good fortunes. Thankfully I have a mother who’s extremely educated and sheltered me from the mayhem popping off outside our door. That’s why my 25th birthday will be so special for us. As soon as I wake up I’m going to call her and scream, “NIGGA WE MADE IT!”

Drake’s “We Made It” is an anthem for young black males. It resonates with us more than you could ever imagine. I play it while I’m brushing my teeth. I sip my OJ to it. It has to be playing on my iPhone when I’m walking out the door. Do you know why? Because I fucking made it, and fuck you statistics! I’m not supposed to have a college education, but fuck you, I do. Y’all motherfuckers better shut the hell up and enjoy the show.

“We Made It” is more than the ‘we came from nothing and made something of ourselves’ principle. It’s that, mixed with fuck you. Similar to what February means to me. Yes, I take time to appreciate the heroes like Langston Hughes, Malcolm X, and Rosa Parks, but as a black male living in America I can’t have that appreciation without a sense of animosity towards the establishment. Drake illustrates his hostility during “We Made It.” In the intro Drake raps eight times that we’ve made it, reminding us it wasn’t an easy mission. In many cases we had to scrap for what we’ve accomplished, so you best believe we’re going to let the whole world know. This song is the crowning moment of our crusade, a final word at the zenith of young black achievement; “Nigga we made it!”

Drake’s waiting in the lobby at Motown connects with all of us. Who hasn’t waited in an office for an interview, meeting, or presentation, nervous because whatever happens in the next hour may determine your future. I used to sit in Mass Appeal once a week, anxiously flipping through magazines, waiting for an editor to green light my newest article. Now every morning when I come in the office do you know what’s playing through my headphones? That’s right because, “Nigga, we made it!” And if there is a way to rig it, I will play, “We Made It” throughout the entire office when I walk in the door. It’s that serious.

In line at Starbucks this morning I had it roaring out of my earbuds. The older white man in front of me turned around and stared in judgement. I was rocking all black, Jordan 11’s, and a Bart Simpson trap beanie – a prime example of an ‘urban youth’ to this fool. I could see the dude was displeased with my get-up and whole entire attitude. I could hear the determination in Drake’s voice, “I swear that we made it,” it’s immensely intoxicating. I was so drunk on those vibes that I wanted to swat the coffee out of the old man’s hand. I don’t think he realized that I had made it, and young black aggression was the only logical way I could let him know.

Being a black male isn’t the easiest thing in the world. The ones who have made it to 25 years old without jail time or the burden of child support payments rejoice. It’s February, this is supposed to be our month. No need to be sheepish or insecure about our success, let’s raise the proverbial roof and shit on the statistics. You know why? Because we made it.

Related Articles

Real Talk
Real Talk

#RIP: Hip Hop and the Celebrity Tribute

Real Talk
Real Talk

Drip or Drown: Understanding Drake’s Latest Beef and Alleged Appropriation


Drake’s Kodak Black Cosign: Blessing or Curse?


Latest News

Metro Boomin drops a new song with Drake and Offset Music

Metro Boomin Drops Surprise Drake, Offset Collab, “No Complaints”—Is Album Next?

The Atlanta producer's got everybody lookin'
Zola News

Viral Dancing Gorilla Sad Reminder Of What Harambe Could Have Been

Impressive moves but... damn
tupac filmmakers sued by former vibe writer Film

‘All Eyez On Me’ Filmmakers Sued for Using Fictional Characters in Tupac Biopic

Former ‘VIBE’ writer claims the movie steals his intellectual property
Call of Duty 4 Screencap Remastered Tech/Games

‘Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Remastered’ Standalone Release Coming Soon

COD fans who skipped the $80 'Infinite Warfare' bundle are psyched
memesmahnegguh, coco mango cherry Hey, You're Cool

Hey, You’re Cool! @memesMahNegguh

Adult Swim, holler at your boy!
Banksy News

Goldie Refers to Banksy as “Rob,” People Freak Out

You do realize how many Robs there are in the world, right?

New Music From Vince Staples, dvsn, Heems and More

The Listening Room (June 23, 2017)
2017 Draft Class Sports

The Major Takeaways from the 2017 NBA Draft

Last night we watched men both younger and way more talented than us become way richer than us. Welp
Sizzla-DJ-Khaled News

The Untold Story Behind DJ Khaled and Sizzla’s “I’m So Grateful”

Khaled and Kalonji go way back
Eric B. & Rakim will reunite to celebrate 30th anniversary of Paid In Full. Music

Eric B. & Rakim Announce First Show Together in Over 20 Years

Finally let the rhythm hit 'em
essex-market-featured Art

‘Market Surplus’ Gives a Building on the L.E.S. One Last Jolt Before Demolition

Mural art show features Faust, Lamour Supreme, ELLE and more
Silicon Valley: The Soundtrack is available now. Music

Stream ‘Silicon Valley: The Soundtrack,’ Featuring Nas, Run the Jewels, Wu-Tang ...

A Mass Appeal and HBO collaboration, streaming now
Jay 305 talks about Suga Free's 'Street Gospel' album. Music

Jay 305 Preaches on Suga Free’s Classic ‘Street Gospel’

Sebastian Gorka News

Trump’s Top Advisor: There’s Only Radical Muslims and Those Soon To Be Radical

Trump's top advisor doesn't confirm he hates Islam, but does tell us he doesn't like hip hop
vince-staples Music Video

Everything’s Up For Interpretation in Vince Staples’ Video for “Rain Come Down”

...except for his feeling about Sprite
Tyler the Creator suggests he may be dropping a project soon. Music

Is It About to Be Tyler SZN?