I had a girlfriend in high school named Monica Sacks. She listened to the Last Poets, and took me to a Public Enemy concert.
I was amazed they had the crowd chanting praise allah and farrakhansome different from
Listening to it was a bit voyeuristic, but he just sounded so cool.
I was also into a similar lifestyle, albiet without the guns, poverty or constant threat of imminent violence; mostly the bud and booze - never enough bitches.
Ice Cube was more alluring and sustaining. His lyrics were artful. His beats were phat, with a ph.
If the music sounds voilent and offensive, it may be accurately conveying their sense of life as black men in America. It's a pretty violent and offensive position in this society. That they have a voice for that, dialogue about their situation is constructive, positive.
I wrote about visions for social change in rap lyrics for Swarthmore.
Folks who ride the extremist bandwagon for money do this genre a disservice, but that is no different than any other