50 Cent: When it comes to civil, you don't gotta worry about the G-Unit, worry about the Je-Je-Je-Jew-Unit. They're the real goon squad. And when the lawyers come out, you gon' see what it is. I don't pay nobody but the lawyers.While this has only been discussed in the J-Blogosphere (to the best of my knowledge) on Jewschool and by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, most of the blogosphere discussion of this is on celebrity, hip-hop, and music blogs (no, I'm not going to bother linking to the dozens of various sites where this is discussed, but you can click here for a search). Most blogs discussing this issue touch upon it only surficially, claiming 50 Cent to be somehow anti-semitic. I'm going to wholeheartedly agree with Reb Shmuley on this where he states, "I think Jews will perhaps take offense to the comment, but I take no offense to it whatsoever." He goes on to state
Miss Jones: And I need a real good, aggressive one because these little ?pinny-anny? lawyers I've been biggin' up and dealin' wit' - all they wanna do is walk in the courtroom with $2500 suits to overcompensate for their swagger they do not have.
It’s an acknowledgment of the Jewish Community’s emphasis on learning and knowledge, and of the law. The term ‘Jew Unit’ has the connotation of respectable legal experts…and I welcome it. In general, we have to minimize the whole ‘culture of offense’ here in America, where people sit around, waiting to be offended. There is real racism and real anti-semitism in America but we cheapen both terms by finding such examples where they don’t exist.It's beautiful.
Firstly, I agree that 50 was not trying to be anti-semitic, but, if anything, trying to praise his legal counsel. Moreover, this quote is not the first of rappers rapping about Jewish lawyers (albeit in a positive way) (I would be interested in reading an article one of these days as to how Jews are represented and/or referenced in hip-hop - an interesting nexus of cultures.), so it's not such a surprise.
In a related vein, when I went to pick up the engagement ring (both to pick it out and to pick it up), I was pleasantly surprised at the numbers of Jews involved in the industry. There was some sense of pride of Jews being highly represented in such a lucrative field that occurred to me. I figure, similarly, too, here with Jewish lawyers - it's little surprise or secret that there are a lot of Jews in the legal field, as well as in the entertainment business.