The Hustle Is Glamorized, Criminalized — Anything But Understood
Alizah Salario

Hi Alizah,

I’ll have to agree with Memphis Blues on this one, but maybe not for the same reasons. I was with you until your piece veered into race and discussion of ‘blacks’, which is… — I’m honestly curious about some pieces written by some ‘whites’… I’m reading along and then BOOM! there’s this picture of a dead ‘black’ guy or this weird, veering reference to ‘blacks’ and the mistreatment of ‘blacks’. What does the illegal activity of Alton Sterling and Eric Garner have to do with 'hustle’, and, especially, the alleged hustle of a 'white' woman? Your piece is actually subtly discriminatory in that I actually don’t attribute 'hustle' to 'white' people at all, or any race for that matter. You are insinuating that.

I agree that selling loosies is a form of a hustle, but using this as part of your argument is erroneous since this hustle is actually illegal. I can also come up with the names of many 'black' people and people in general who hustle positively. I don’t compare having 5 part-time jobs and an internship with stealing and then selling scrap metal. If you’re going to discuss the criminalizing of a hustle then your example should be someone shot to death while selling books on the street, not selling stolen VCRs or loose cigarettes. Of course, I am in no way indicating that selling illegal products on the street should mean one’s death, but risk comes with operating outside of the law. Please stop using ‘black’ people and dead ‘black’ people to make points that don’t make any sense. You are, in fact, actually ‘glamorizing’ and creating sensitization around illegal hustles.

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