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Why Dr. Umar & General Seti’s Beef is a Problem

Dr. Umar Johnson has become a major figure in the “conscious community” and has given many knowledgeable viewpoints on the issues that Blacks face. His views on systematic oppression, the Black church, and investing in and uplifting the young Black male have personally made me voluntarily watch his videos and interviews.

But a few days ago, I was let down by this Black man who has consistently done and said questionable things for quite some time now. This man, who I viewed as a breath of fresh air for our community, revealed the main problem with our community in his latest scandal.

What is being mocked and referred to as a “Conscious Beef” between Dr. Umar and General Seti, another well-known influencer, reveals just how contradictory and problematic these types of leaders are. The increase of individuals that are becoming “Conscious Pimps,” i.e. those who make a profit from the desires of Black people is a huge issue.

Over the last few years, conscious pimping, otherwise known as the misuse of power and influence on the Black community, has tainted the push for those of us who really wish to unite and build. The conscious community that once was has become more gimmicky, and the rise of self-proclaimed leaders like Dr. Umar are pushing our people into segregated directions during a time when we need unity.

Growing up, I was exposed to the “woke folk” through my mom who took us to many Kwanzaa celebrations, Pan-African cultural events, and who blasted Erykah Badu (my Auntie in my head) every morning as she prepared us for school. But recently, as I sat and chewed my peppermint flavor stick as I watched both General Seti and Dr. Umar Johnson’s videos and I thought to myself, “Dr. Frances Welsing is turning in her grave.”

There are so many pioneers who have dedicated their lives to educating Black people and who genuinely wanted us to unite and build. I am clueless as to how the new era of the conscious community can even attack one another if they have the same fight. Egotistical thinking is stripping the foundation of our people’s unity and we have allowed YouTube personalities who are more about their personal interests instead of the interests of our people to lead us.

Dr. Umar Johnson has a platform that is filled with many that are looking to find truth, since society has continued to feed us lies through the media. He has created a following of people who are looking to him to lead the way as they seek to find their sense of purpose in this world. Dr. Umar has taken that need and used it to seduce each of us into infatuation. However, he is quick to attack anyone that “wakes up” from the spell of his false hope.

This issue is why many people who were his followers or enjoyed his talks have turned away from him. His latest attack on General Seti has become the cherry on top for not only his platform, but the conscious community as a whole due to the rise of self-interested conscious folk who uses the knowledge they discover for their personal gain. Dr. Umar has become lost in this journey to consciousness and proved this by naming himself the “Prince of Pan-Africanism,” which he yelled in his video as he proceeded to defame Genral Seti.

The beef videos posted by General Seti and Dr. Umar Johnson contradict everything I learned about the conscious community. I always viewed the elders as ones who possessed wisdom that strengthen others, even when they were being attacked. I viewed them as individuals that united no matter the issue. The disappointment and sad part of this entire ordeal is that two Black men used their platforms to attack one another after a year where we seen two Black men literally get murdered on Facebook.

The time is now for us to really hold our self-proclaimed Black leaders accountable for their actions, because our people are hurting and need all the positivity in this very moment. It is now time for those of us with platforms to step up and become the change we wish to see in this world. Dr. Umar and General Seti are both human, but when you have positioned yourself as the voice for oppressed people, you have to think of them in all your actions. Conscious pimping needs to die and this beef should serve as the beginning of the end.

Ariel Rainey is a creative consultant, mommy activist and a millennial voice that focuses on creating and impacting the world. Nicknamed the Mogul by her clients, she is known for being the bridge that connects brands with audiences through innovation. She is also the Founder of the non-profit Hustle Mommies for Moms on the hustle for their communities and families. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram at @ArieltheMogul. 

  • cBn


  • Paul Lewis

    REAL TRUTH: We Report, You Decide… Now, this is eggactly how White-Supremacy Undermines any Positive Black Movement… Sorry Brothers, but this is Not How We should be conducting ourselves, if we want to have any verisimilitude of unification… STOP the In-fighting, and let's just agree to disagree… I say Potatoe, you may say Potato; but I pray that we won't SMASH each other Up because of the Differences; in Jesus' name… White-Supremacy is the Natural Enemy of any & ALL Non-whites; but Satan is the Spiritual Enemy of the Entire World….

    WHOOMP THERE IT IS… Willie Lynch would be having a good laugh and high praises right about now; because his doctrine is in Full Effect, even into the 21st Century…


    Say whatcha want, I'm going to be kicking it with Christ Jesus until the Sun (Son) comes to catch me, wifey, family, & friends up; in Jesus' name…
    God Bless and Shalom…

  • Robby

    Have not read or heard all of Dr. Johnsons commentary but as a retired educator who has worked with, and participated in numerous community activites, I find my people constantly at odds with, divisive commentary, running far behind where we should be after all of these years. Why not wage a massive campaign to ensure equal education for our urban learners. We spend most of our time being critical and the URBAN ISSUES CONTINUE. Let's Get on th same page just once
    And see the difference we can make.

    • Demetrius Brown

      100% agreed

  • DatMediaDude

    You failed to realize that Seti is the one stirring up trouble and disrespecting elders. Do your research. Seems like you are biased. Young Pharoah is another sidekick to Seti aka Elliot Blount which lives at home with his mother. Young Pharoah is on parole with a case pending in Baltimore.

  • Lamont

    Where is JET magazine when Brothers and Sisters are putting in serious work in the communities?

    • Demetrius Brown

      for real

    • Valerie Denise Jones

      Exactly. She should have interviewed him first versus spewing the same toxins she claims to oppose. As a former Ebony Fashion Fair model… I am ashamed she represents this magazine. Not only is Dr. Wesling turning over in her grave… Mrs. Johnson is too! This is not what the magazine is suppose to represent. Must be trying tosatisfy the new owners. @valeriedenise —

  • Jen

    I couldn't have said this any better. Even in trying to unite we can't unite?!?! This is not the way. If you so woke that you feel the need to step on others trying to awake you may be sleep walking.

  • Bryant

    Why you didn't jump on both equally ?

  • Fukjet

    Jet magazine you guys should be ashamed of yourselves. The conscious community hasn't heard from or gotten any support from this organization and now that their is something negative to exploit your reporting the story?? How about you report the schools that these brothers are trying to build?? Where are your positive news stories?

  • Bruce

    Deep… Every word rings as truth in my ears… Thank you for hitting the nail right on the head… Their is nothing wrong with making a dollar while helping but if you are helping to make a dollar everything is wrong with that… I do not agree with all of either one of these men's teaching but then again I dont believe in all of anyone's teachings… I do know strong men like this are needed in our community and I hope that these brothers can get it together because they are needed…

  • Anthony

    These two are no leaders of mine and never will be. These two narcissistic attention mongers are more interested in their positions and titles than their people. Arguing about who is in charge. Neither of you. Please produce what these two have done for people of color besides make speeches. What organizations have they built, infrastructure they have organized, change they have brought about, power they wield outside of their own circles, influence they have on public or national policy. These two can't do anything for me that i can't do for myself. They need to grow up before they can teach people to grow.

    • Demetrius Brown

      I agree with you to a certain extent.

  • Israelite


  • Darryl

    no matter what color they are, their minds still belong to the Matrix.

  • Queenblackk

    Ain't that the truth! For some reason I was never really into Umar. Something just wasn't right

  • Les Wood

    I agree with you 100%. We have to put people like him in check. this infighting is what led to the downfall of a lot of the organizations back in the 60's and 70's. These actions show a certain level of immaturity of this kind of so called leadership. Its a new day now and we have to demand that these people be straight with us and put their egos aside. if they can't, then the community needs to turn its back on them.

  • Joshua

    This article is severely biased against the brother Umar Johnson while barley mentioning the general Sara Suten Seti that's the first problem I caught. The second is everyone is really blowing this out if proportion and looking real weak and gullible. If trump supporter's were weak like black people he never would of got in office, but they stick together and that's our main problem. Y'all mad at him for getting mad at someone else. Could he have articulated himself better of course but does that mean that all the work he's been putting in is all of a sudden gone? Nah stop it the positive far out weighs the negatives but this shows why we can't get no where as a people. No Unity.

    • Demetrius Brown

      I agree with you Joshua 100%. I thought the author of this article went too far by calling Umar a conscience pimp out to make a profit. This author Ariel Rainey claims that this is the problem "with black community leaders" and says this is the reason we can't make progress. But I would argue that a bigger problem is people like this author who would throw such strong accusations such as "conscience pimp out to make a profit" with no evidence to substantiate such a claim with the exception of one isolated tirade. And another bigger problem we have is authors like this who are willing to undermine an entire black movement over one isolated incident. But I am not surprised with this kind of rhetoric from a publication that is no longer 100% black owned.

    • Valerie Denise Jones

      Exactly! That was my first thought. I should google her (see how many skeletons fall out)

  • Black

    All I got from this was waaah waaah waaah crycrycry. You want alpha males to lead a movement that fight for what they believe, yet youre surprised when they fight, for what they believe loll funny

    • Demetrius Brown

      Interesting comment. But I do believe their behavior was very adolescent like. However, I still support Umar and his work.

  • Najwa

    I Agree to an extent , because Dr umar didn't attack seti , Dr umar made valid points about the conscious community needing a sit down by the elders and I couldn't agree with him more, however, Seti as usual was the one who disrespected the elders and umar and it wasn't the first or second time

  • Walton

    This article is trash. To define "Conscious Pimp" as those who make a profit from the desires of Black people is a general definition for consumerism. You might be a conscious Pimp for making money of the desires of black people wanting to talk about this non-issues. Then to state that they are keeping "those of us from truly uniting" is bullshit. There is way more than these individuals that keep this from happening, and those who aren't "conscious" are barely doing anything at all but consuming dump articles like this.

  • Ron

    I'm so sick of people using words like disappointed or hurt or saddened when describing how they feel about these men and their beefs. Stop getting your little feelings hurt. These guys could both be agents for all we know. Take their positive info and use it to empower our community. I don't trust any of these guys like that. I do take their positive info and energy and keep it moving.

    • Demetrius Brown

      Ron, since you think Umar is an agent, then what's your plan of action exactly? Because I don't see anyone else out there putting together a plan for an educational institution for the youth. Obviously, an educational institute is imperative for the community. And I'm not trying to attack you personally. But we are wasting valuable time and we already have someone who has a plan to make a school, has already chosen the property, has planned all the details and has started a fundraiser that has already garnered several hundred thousands of dollars. If we don't rally behind him, when will this opportunity come again? Even if we thought there was a good chance he was an agent (which I seriously doubt he is), sometimes you have to go for broke and we are in desperate times, we are running out of time and no else, including you nor me has an alternative plan to present. In my opinion, these accusations are nothing more than an excuse to not have to make any sacrifices and do any hard work. Because accusing someone of being an agent or con man is such an easy way out of having to invest hard work resources.

  • Michael Arkk

    I am one of Dr. Umar Fan and could be supporter. I also admire the General…I was hoping the Staged Clash was a publicity stunt…
    These 2 Minds are just too Powerful and Aware of their importance to the Black Community … If its a genuine clash of minds the it could be a catalyst for both Men to double their drive to uplift our community…An apology would also be appropriate in the near future… Disagreements can have health benefits…

  • Ted

    BLAH BLAH ,African Americans in America need substance over style .Prince of What and General of What ?

  • Andrew Wade

    These brothers are not leaders they are just a few of street smart scholars who use a form of entertainment in the street vernacular to inform others who have not done any research on their own.

  • Demetrius Brown

    I do believe their behavior was very adolescent like. Usually, Umar can keep his cool. But there have been times when he reacted immaturely. Surprising coming from someone who is one of the most mature people I have ever seen. However, I still support Umar and his work. And I'm smart enough to understand everyone has a character flaw. And so you have to just work with it the best way you can . But I don't think one minor character flaw is a reason to stop supporting someone and the important work they are trying to accomplish.

  • Hudson Bartley

    This being a typical case of two black men showing jealousy toward one another, and wanting to outblack each other. it could be a publicity stunt to get more attention. They could be agents for the man. Or all of the above and more.

  • Adisa Bey

    It's wack as hell t to constantly put our leaders aside when they make a mistake. I know negroes judge our people based on the white standard that the European placed in our minds but it shows how foolish we are when by their own standards white folks put Trump in office with a big ol handful of pu $$¥

  • LorraineMuhammad

    We have to be mindful we seen this before with Malcom x and Elijah Muhammad we seen this Marcus Garvy we seen this before the F.B.I AGENTS WHO KILL OUR LEARDERS WHILE THE DIVIDE OUT UNITY LOOK AT THE BIGH PICTURE UMAR JOHNSON IS THE TARGET BY OUR OPEN ENEMY LET'S UNITE WE HAVE THE SAME ENEMY !! I don't know to much about this beef but I do know as A Elder stop it Ase

  • ThapeloAnkhamen

    My view is this… Seti has his lane… and Dr Umar has his. The Elders did not build the Lane Seti uses and if you don't like that lane, then don't get in it. Now what Umar Johnson did was an insult. He tried to suggest a control measure for a lane he did not build, and suggest Elders should control voices of that lane… problem is… what are the requirements of an Elder? Will they have to have a white man title? Who are they? How will they govern a lane they did not build, and probably know very little about? Who will be the informat group to notify these elders? What is the requirements of being an informat? Yea… this gets deep into white identified behavior, and that's why Umar Johnson should stay in his lane like Seti said. None of these Brothers are my Leader and to my knowledge, Seti never proclaimed to be a leader… he is a debater and a Black Propaganda promoter of Black Culture… Umar Johnson is a Preacher, and the only one I know who claimed to be a Leader based on his popularity…

  • Karen Hempstead

    NOTHING NEW: Well, Sis, some folks are always either looking out for themselves (e.g., hustling religious leaders, infiltrators and/or informants), while others may simply have different perspectives. Why just look at our history when considering Dr Dubois vs Booker T Washington, Dr King vs Brotha Malcolm and more. Back-in-the-day, however, people had class/sophistication, respected themselves and others more. Why they 'freely' gave of themselves to the movement. Considering the GENERATION these Brothas emerged out of, that is, after many serious Black leaders had been murdered, jailed or exiled, and DRUGS & GUNS were being pumped into our communities while GANGSTERISM was the norm along with CONSUMERISM (especially a desire for fancy clothes, cars, diamonds, and gold), it's understandable that these Brothas' attitudes and behavior would, unfortunately, REFLECT the mind-set created at that time. Indeed the all-out assault launched upon us which included media madness, twisted Black minds and led to chaos in our communities- and all the while the PRISON INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX was being developed. Here, CONTEXT is important. Think about it. Please DON'T BLAME THE VICTIM! While I feel you with respect to 'CONSCIOUS PIMPS,' given that we live in a capitalist society where 'cash rules' and it's about the mighty dollar bill, it makes sense for those who have sacrificed and worked hard to acquire knowledge, to expect a little something in return for their livelihood. After all, we do pay just about everyone else for his or her services (doc, atty, acct, actors, etc.). If our community doesn't support them, who/what will?

  • Tia Capers

    Jet Mag, can we have a write up on the Hidden Colors series by Tariq Nasheed versus this type of an article? When our leaders in the “conscious community” are doing great things, we would like to hear about that on your platform. Also, please note that Dr. Umar did apologize to his viewers for the rant and rage he displayed against Seti. Please create the balance when it comes to black community – we really need balanced articles, especially from our own. Thanks!

    • IveSeenEnough

      Leaders? You actually look to these charlatans for leadership? What is wrong with you?