Ms. Hill’s Release.

Ms. Hill's Release.

There goes our heroine, our eight-time Grammy award-winning superstar—blank, almost in a daze, pain exudes from her eyes. She appears empty, although still beautiful, in her mug shot which was recently released after pleading guilty to not paying federal taxes. Our once victorious leading lady looks so defeated. The possibility of our sister, Lauryn Hill going to jail for not paying taxes between the years 2005 and 2007 hurts. “Lauryn Hill says her heart was in Zion, I wish her heart still was in rhymin’- ’cause who the kids gonna’ listen to? Huh?” said Kanye West on “Champion” (2007), a record appropriately titled to reflect who Hill was for a generation. Did you realize that you were a champion in our eyes?

It feels like just yesterday I was summoned to my television set, mesmerized by Hill’s talent in her 1998 music video for “Doo-Wop (That Thing)” She was glowing from her pregnancy at the time—her natural beauty was striking and something about that musical presentation was intoxicating. “How you gon’ win when you ain’t right within?” she asked, a question that would stick with me through my adult years. She easily flowed back and forth from rhyming to singing—a multi-talented goddess in my eyes. Although I was just a tween, I understood that this woman would go on to define an era of music and uplift not just a generation of women—but men as well. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, (Hill’s only solo album) was infused with so much truth; her transparency was undeniable especially on “Zion”—where Hill opened up about folks trying to talk her out of having her son.

“Until you conquer the enemy in yourself, you can’t deal with anyone, in order to be used by God, you have to really be used…sometimes in order to be used, you also have to be humiliated, sometimes you have to be kicked and beaten,” Hill once said. Who knows how long she will continue to be beaten by the media with derogatory headlines, foes and even some friends. Now is not the time to berate Hill, it’s the perfect time to send her well wishes. She is completely adept at making a triumphant comeback with a more than satisfactory stage presence, as we seen during Hot 97’s Summer Jam 2012.

According to the Daily Mail, Hill is scheduled to be sentenced in late November of this year. She took to her personal blog two months ago to explain that she turned into a recluse to protect her family from the industry. She continued to defend herself, “I did not deliberately abandon my fans, nor did I deliberately abandon any responsibilities, but I did however put my safety, health and freedom and the freedom, safety and health of my family first over all other material concerns! I also embraced my right to resist a system intentionally opposing my right to whole and integral survival.

I conveyed all of this when questioned as to why I did not file taxes during this time period. Obviously, the danger I faced was not accepted as reasonable grounds for deferring my tax payments, as authorities, who despite being told all of this, still chose to pursue action against me, as opposed to finding an alternative solution.”

Sending prayers, love and light to Hill and her family, while closing this blog with positivity that everyone can benefit from: “Let’s not be mediocre in our greatness, think big,” Hill advised an attentive crowd of high school students in 2000. She continued “and think in dozes and experiences and don’t be afraid of experiences that teach you!”

Lathleen Ade-Brown is a New York City based freelance writer, she has written for Essence, Black Enterprise and JET in the past. Follow her on Twitter @Lathleen (

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Source; Global Grind

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