VIBE’s Editor In Chief Reminisces On The Impact Of “Dear Mama”

Dear Mama,

I can’t even listen to that song sometimes because it’s so powerful. Pac caught the essence of what every young black male in the hood goes through in a relationship with their moms. He made it over 20 years ago but it still rings true today. The way he pauses and smiles some of the words — how it perfectly, honestly and respectfully honors his mother Afeni Shakur. He talks of his faults in the song and shines light on her flaws…but then adds hope, compassion and how her strength and dedication to her kids’ lives couldn’t be matched by anyone. How dependable she is. At his lowest low, craziest mindstate and most elated, she more than anyone, could enjoy and comfort him appropriately.

But in her own life, Ms. Shakur was a Black Panther, the epitome of the long gone days of unapologetic black pride and solider for the betterment of the underprivileged and hopeless. She instilled the jewels of knowledge and self confidence in Pac, and helped give him the power to spark the mind of those who are changing the world like he said he would. His influence on the world starts with Ms. Shakur’s will to serve the people. So we are all of her sons and daughters in that respect.

I heard a story about this XXL cover and how it almost didn’t happen. Heard the publishers didn’t believe she could sell the issue to that audience. I believe it was one of the best sellers that year.

Datwon Thomas, VIBE Editor In Chief

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