BMF stands for Black Mafia Family, and at its core, the true BMF story is about the nature of the American dream.
Big Meech, BMF’s charismatic leader said it best:
‘Everyone wants to live like they sell dope…Its the American Dream’.
From this perspective, the true BMF story boils down to how everyone wants to live the American Dream symbolised by the opulent life of a drug dealer, but without any of the risks and problems that come with the Drug Dealer lifestyle.
Big Meech and the BMF story can therefore be viewed as a modern Gangsta epic with all the elements of tragedy and ambition that come with the pursuit of the American Dream that made The Godfather and Scarface resonate.
BMF Rise & Fall
The story of BMF began when BMF was formed as a drug cartel headed by brothers Demetrius “Big Meech” and Terry Flenory in the late 1980s.
BMF started in Detroit, Michigan, and in Ten years the BMF organization had grown into a Multi-Million dollar nationwide operation reportedly pulling in at least US$270 Million dollars at the peak of BMF’s activities.
After achieving success on the streets, BMF then sought to expand into legitimate business via the Music industry which led to the formation of a Record Label, BMF Entertainment.
The BMF story and legend grew further as the BMF Record Label was quite successful as seen by the BMF’s label collaboration with popular Mainstream Hip Hop Artists like Young Jeezy and Fabulous.
However, in the early 2000s, an FBI Raid would bring an abrupt end to the BMF story as the FBI uncovered evidence on BMF that would see Meech, his brother and leading members of the BMF organisation charged and convicted for running a criminal enterprise with both brothers receiving Sentences of at least 30 years in Prison.
Big Meech & BMF Legacy
The impact of Big Meech and the legacy of the BMF story can be understood in terms of how the BMF story is a visceral portrayal of Big Meech’s relentless pursuit of the American Dream.
In the TV Series BMF, Big Meech is portrayed as a combination of the narcisstic Tony Montana and benevolent young Godfather in the making.
Big Meech’s motivation was to demonstrate through the success of the BMF story what an independent, determined and disempowered young Black Man from the fringes of American Society could accomplish.
Through drug dealing, Big Meech sought in his view, not only to make money, but to also inspire, using the power and wealth that came from BMF’s illegal activities to uplift his community from within.
The BMF story shows that in Big Meech’s mind, the criminal lifestyle was a means to carrying out a bigger Social agenda where one starts out from a disadvantaged position in life.
This aspect of the BMF story is emphasised further by the fact the BMF TV Series occurs against the backdrop of deindustrialisation of the City of Detroit.
In essence, the decline of the once illustrious Motor City and the accompanying dissapearance of the American Dream it once supported is replaced by the American Dream or more accurately Amrican nightmare that arrives with the Drug dealing associated with Big Meech and the BMF story.
American Industrial decline is the Historical landscape in which the BMF Story unfolds, and we are left to consider whether Big Meech and the BMF story would have existed at all without the Industrial Decline of America most evident in Cities like Detroit from the 70s onwards.
In the end, the source of Meech’s wealth and power was drug dealing and as a consequence, Meech’s American Dream was always going to be dependent on whether the long arm of the Law would catch up with him before he had time to fully execute his vision through the activities of BMF.
In these 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.
Ultimately, Big Meech was not able to see his ‘Benevolent Gangsta’ vision come to fruition through the BMF story, and we’ll never know if Big Meech’s vision of the American Dream would have come to pass had Meech not been arrested bringing an abrupt to the BMF story.
Nevertheless, Big Meech’s legend continues to grow, and through portrayals of the BMF story seen in popular Culture, most notably the TV Series BMF, its also clear that Big Meech’s legacy as well that of the BMF story, represent a Historic moment in which one man created and pursued his own new American Dream in the face of American De-indsutrialisation and the death of the old American dream.