by Minister of Information JR
It was not until I talked to one of my female cousins about books to send to another one of my cousins who is currently fighting a murder case that Jiwe’s name stuck with me. She told me that I needed to read the book he authored, “War of the Bloods in My Veins.” That is when I reached out to Jiwe to do this interview. Check him out in his own words.
M.O.I. JR: How did you get introduced to street life?
Jiwe: In 1990 my mama moved me, my younger and older brother to Phoenix, Arizona, for a better life, so she thought. In reality, it was the worse move we could have made. We moved to the wild, wild West. Where back East there were traditional crews, hoods and cliques, out here they were well organized, militant, geographical killers.
M.O.I. JR: Now that you are a big time author, how has your life in the streets made you a better man?
Jiwe: Because I been through it all, and I know what I don’t want anymore: the murders, the poverty and the depression. Because of what I’ve gone through, I know how to fight for the needs of my people.
M.O.I. JR: What woke you up to wanting more for yourself than what the streets of Newark were giving you?
Jiwe: In 2004 I caught a first degree attempted murder charge while my daughter was due in three weeks. I bailed out two days before she came. Witnessing her birth struck something in me. I guess you can say I had an epiphany.
M.O.I. JR: How did the Bloods get to the East Coast? When?
Jiwe: I won’t speak for the East Coast; I’ll speak for my city and county. Myself and two other individuals helped start the Bloods here. I had come from Phoenix already a Damu. It was in me already, so in 1996 we emerged on the scene.
M.O.I. JR: How influential are the Bloods on the East Coast?
Jiwe: Very influential.
M.O.I. JR: When did you decide that you wanted to share your experiences in book form?
M.O.I. JR: What was the process in getting a subsidiary to Simon and Schuster to publish your book?
Jiwe: I went and met with them, and they were impressed with my story. They gave me a deal. It was just that simple.
M.O.I. JR: What has the response been from the ghettos around the nation?
Jiwe: Responses are still overwhelming because I’m contacted from people all around the country sharing with me how my stories has sparked something in them. I’m grateful.
M.O.I. JR: How have people who don’t come from the hood responded to your book?
Jiwe: Just as overwhelming. It’s informative and enlightening to them. It enables them the knowledge needed to deal with people who have backgrounds like myself. Knowledge is power.
M.O.I. JR: Are you planning to publish any more books? On what topics?
Jiwe: I’m currently writing the second book as we speak, titled, “The Real Jiwe.” I’ve actually been compiling notes for it since 2006. Just didn’t have the proper ending, and now I have one.
M.O.I. JR: How could people keep up with you online?
Jiwe: JiweEra.com, twitter: @TheRealJiwe, skype: Therealj1we
I just wanna say I appreciated the interview. Whenever I’m able to speak and spread the word of change, I take advantage of that. Life is too short not to be full of wisdom. I hope someone catches what I’m throwing.