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In the song “If I Ruled the World” Nas rapped about a fantasy world that he’d create if he were in charge. Among other things, the rapper said, “I’d free all my sons, I love em love em baby.” But although Nas understands the pitfalls of America, he recently told PBS’ Charlie Rose that he’s still a “proud American.”
During the interview, Rose held up the rapper’s “Illmatic” album and remarked that it had between 20 years since the album’s release. This allowed Nas a moment of reflection.
When asked how things were different 20 years ago until now, Nas remarked that his view of America had changed.
“Well, I’ve always been a calm individual, but I’m a lot more calm, and I’ve changed in ways where I was once a rebel to America, and now I like America a lot more. I love America!”
Nas then explained that his perspective on America has changed due in part to what he now understands about how things work. He also admits that he wants to be a part something bigger than himself.
“I want to, I want to earn it. I want to, I want to, I’m like everybody else in this world and I just want to be a part of this whole human family and I don’t need to be accepted by anybody. But it’s better for me because now I can see different. I can see why certain things are the way they are, why the system works a certain way, and it doesn’t seem like a beast that I can’t conquer anymore. It feels like this is my soil, this is where I’m from, this is who I am. A proud American. There was a time when I didn’t feel that way.”
What do you think about what Nas said? Do you consider yourself a “proud American”?