Big Meech & The Black Mafia Family
‘Everyone wants to live like they sell dope…Its the American Dream’ (Big Meech)
An astute observation on the state of our Culture today by Big Meech…Everyone wants to live the opulent life of a drug dealer, but without any of the risks and problems that come with the lifestyle.
The quote itself in my view sums up the intelligence and wit that got Big Meech and the Black Mafia Family Organisation (BMF) to the top before everything came tumbling down in the early 2000s.
Big Meech and BMF’s story can be viewed as a modern Gangsta epic with all the elements of tragedy and ambition that made The Godfather and Scarface resonate.
Back Mafia Family Rise & Fall
BMF was a drug cartel headed by brothers Demetrius “Big Meech” and Terry Flenory.
Starting out in Detroit, Michigan in the late 1980s, in Ten years the organization had grown into a Multi-Million dollar nationwide operation reportedly pulling in at least US$270 Million dollars at the peak of its operations.
Success on the streets was followed by an effort to expand into legitimate business via the Music industry, and a Record Label, BMF Entertainment was formed which collaborated with popular Artists like Young Jeezy and Fabulous.
However, in the early 2000s, a Police Raid uncovered evidence that would see Meech, his brother and leading members of the organisation charged and convicted for running a criminal enterprise with both brothers receiving Sentences of at least 30 years in Prison.
Big Meech Influence & Legacy
There’s a reason the opening scene of The Godfather is of Enzo The Baker asking the Godfather for Justice after the attempted rape of his daughter.
Immediately, we are made to appreciate the role of the Gangster not just as a narcissistic Criminal, but instead as a force for Social good able to leverage his power to assist the community where the system has failed.
I would say Big Meech can also be understood as a combination of the narcisstic Tony Montana and benevolent Godfather.
His overrall goal appears to have been to demonstrate what an independent, determined and disempowered young Black Man from the fringes of American Society could accomplish.
Through the display of excess and conspicuous consumption, Big Meech sought in his view, not only to gain more business, but to also inspire, using the power and wealth that came from BMF’s activities to uplift his community from within.
The criminal lifestyle in his view was a means to carrying out a bigger Social agenda.
In the end, the source of Meech’s wealth and power was drug dealing and as a consequence, Meech’s plans were always going to be dependent on whether the long arm of the Law would catch up with him.
Through Prison interviews courtesy of Don Diva Magazine, Meech reflects on his life and the impact of BMF particularly in Atlanta where Meech believes he helped advance and influence ideas on what a young Black Man could achieve in the City.
BMF basically ran Atlanta and a significant number of Entertainers including Rick Ross were inspired and influenced by Big Meech and the BMF Movement.
Ultimately, Big Meech was not able to see his ‘Benevolent Gangsta’ vision come to fruition, and we’ll never know if it would have come to pass even if he hadnt been arrested.
One thing is for sure though, the man’s Legend continues to grow, and his legacy as well that of the BMF Movement, represent a moment in time in which one man tried to actualise the American Dream cast so vividly in Scarface and The Godfather within himself.