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Mathematics

This song is by Mos Def and appears on the album Black On Both Sides (1999).

This song is featured in the video game Madden NFL 2002.
This song is featured in the television series CSI Wikipedia16.
Bucka-bucka-bucka-bucka-bucka-bucka, haha
You know the deal, it's just me, yo
Beats by Su-Primo for all of my people, negroes and latinos
And even the gringos

Yo, check it, one for Charlie Hustle, two for Steady Rock
Three for the forthcoming live future shock
It's five dimensions, six senses, seven firmaments of Heaven and Hell
Eight million stories to tell
Nine planets faithfully keep in orbit with the probable tenth
The universe expands length
The body of my text possess extra strength
Power-lift the powerless up out of this towering inferno
My ink so hot it burn through the journal
I'm blacker than midnight on Broadway and Myrtle
Hip hop passed all your tall social hurdles
Like the nationwide project-prison-industry complex
Working-class poor, better keep your alarm set
Streets too loud to ever hear freedom ring
Say evacuate your sleep, it's dangerous to dream
For ch-ching, cats get the cha-pow, you dead now
Killing fields need blood to graze the cash cow
It's a numbers game, but shit don't add up somehow
Like I got sixteen to thirty bars to rock it
But only fifteen percent of profits ever see my pockets like
Sixty-nine billion in the last twenty years
Spent on national defense but folks still live in fear like
Nearly half of America's largest cities is one-quarter black
That's why they gave Ricky Ross all the crack
Sixteen ounces to a pound, twenty more to a ki
A five-minute sentence hearing and you're no longer free
Forty percent of Americans own a cell phone
So they can hear everything that you say when you ain't home
I guess Michael Jackson was right, you are not alone
Rock your hardhat black 'cause you in the Terrordome
Full of hard niggas, large niggas, dice-tumblers
Young teens and prison greens facing life numbers
Crack mothers, crack babies, and AIDS patients
Young bloods can't spell but they could rock you in PlayStation
This new math is whipping motherfuckers' ass
You want to know how to rhyme you better learn how to add, it's mathematics

Mos Def, Fat Joe, Lady of Rage, Ghostface Killah, and Egon:
The Mighty Mos Def (It's simple mathematics)
(Check it out) (I revolve around science)
(What are we talking about here?)

The Mighty Mos Def (It's simple mathematics)
(Check it out) (I revolve around science)
(What are we talking about here?)

Erykah Badu, James Brown, and Egon:
Do your math
Do your math
(One, two, three, four)
(What are we talking about here?)

Mos Def:
Yo, it's one universal law but two sides to every story
Three strikes and you be in for life, mandatory
Four MC's murdered in the last four years
I ain't trying to be the fifth one, the millennium is here
Yo it's six million ways to die, from the seven deadly thrills
Eight-year olds getting found with nine mills
It's 10 PM, where your seeds at? What's the deal?
He on the hill pumping krill to keep they belly filled
Light in the ass with heavy steel, sights on the pretty shit in life
Young soldiers trying to earn their next stripe
When the average minimum wage is $5.15
You best believe you've got to find a new grind to get cream
The white unemployment rate? It's nearly more than triple for black
Some front-liners got their gun in your back
Bubbling crack, jewel theft and robbery to combat poverty
And end up in the global jail economy
Stiffer stipulations attached to each sentence
Budget cutbacks but increased police presence
And even if you get out of prison still living
Join the other five million under state supervision
This is business, no faces, just lines and statistics
From your phone, your zip code to SSI digits
The system break man, child, and women into figures
Two columns for "Who is" and "Who ain't niggas"
Numbers is hard and real and they never have feelings
But you push too hard, even numbers got limits
Why did one straw break the camel's back? Here's the secret
The million other straws underneath it, it's all mathematics

Mos Def, Fat Joe, Lady of Rage, Ghostface Killah, and Egon:
The Mighty Mos Def (It's simple mathematics)
(Check it out) (I revolve around science)
(What are we talking about here?)

The Mighty Mos Def (It's simple mathematics)
(Check it out) (I revolve around science)
(What are we talking about here?)

Fat Joe:
Mathematics, mathematics
Mathematics, mathematics

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