Wednesday, April 25

Is Hip Hop Getting a Bad Rap?


Hip Hop business mogul Russell Simmons, says radio stations should ban rap songs that contain the n, b, and h-words. In the wake of the Imus controversy, the media has shifted it's attention now to rappers who have in many respects paved the way for all the current criticism, but is censorship the solution?

It's hard to dispute the complaints against some rap music. Ever since tha West Coast gangstafied the genre, it seems the lyric content, subject matter, and language has become more offensive, and negative. The hip-hop tree, however, has so many branches, it would be unwise to generalize or stereotype the art form.

There's holy hip-hop, conscious rap (i.e. Common, and Lupe Fiasco), and dance rap that has folks snappin their fingers and walkin' it out, and there's plenty of independent rap music that can be found all over the Internet. The voices are plentiful, the music is diverse, and it's ever changing.

I will admit, that as a 15-year old high school student I was literally shocked the first time I heard EZ E's EZ Does It, and Too Short. My parents certainly didn't approve of the music, but listening didn't turn me into a gangsta, or a dope dealer.

There is something to be said to the critics who want to hear a more positive side of hip-hop. The spoken word is powerful. More powerful than many probably realize, but in America people have the constitutional right to say what they feel, and it is entertainmet.

Personally, this issue extends far beyond rap music. There are also plenty of folks, like myself, who would like to see more positive stories of black folks on local news. Will it happen? Probably not. Unfortunately, for now, negative sells, both records, and news ads. Until consumers stop buying, and tuning in, the record labels, radio stations, and mainstream media will keep giving you what they think you want.

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At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel compelled to add just one more thought before the confusion reaches truly epic proportions.

There is a systematic dynamic in place that operates to maintain the status quo, especially in terms of the relative power of whites and blacks. It is well established that Blacks are basically powerless in the most important areas of economics and governmental power. Blacks control a small fraction of the wealth of this country, and despite our much touted consumer spending power, he retain little wealth from all that spending. There are Blacks in government, even our noteworthy candidate for POTUS, but they are mostly there by virtue of having sold out to corporate interests, or so marginalized as to be meaningless. In the face of these realities, it is ridiculous to postulate that there is this small group of Black entertainers who are shaping the face of Black culture and through this shaping the dominant culture.

If Blacks truly had the power to influence anything in this society, it would be the end of this society as we know it. If whites were not in power, if white privilege was not such a preciously preserved and protected thing, there would soon be no identifiable white race, as the phenotype of non-melanated skin is a genetic recessive trait. Without the power to create and enforce a caste system in this society, and to demonize, repress and keep non-whites, especially Blacks, from achieving real equality there would be even more intermingling of skin tones and cultures and the white race would simply disappear over time. Without the power to keep that from happening, there will be no more white race.

Now compare that Racism/White Supremacy dynamic to the current phenomena of hip-hop, where a few misguided Negroes say things that are potentially damaging to our communities. Because that's all any rapper can do. RAP. TALK. SAY STUFF. Maybe back it up with a little visual reinforcement from a music video. That's what rappers do.

Now ask yourself, between a system that needs to keep us down for it's own survival and a small group of mis-educated Negroes who sell music primarily to white folks, what's really behind anything negative that affects Black folks?
That's the only thing that matters in this discussion.

At 11:25 PM, Anonymous Scooby Hardee said...

What is the world does POTUS mean? It's bigger than black & white, open your mind Exodus for goodness sake.

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At 8:54 AM, Anonymous kamagra said...

I dont think any word should be banned, the essence of the hip hop is the rimes and the bad words, I dont see why they should be banned.

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At 5:00 PM, Anonymous Cheap Viagra Online said...

I don't think that it is the answer to censor everything. People have the right to express as they like and we have to respect that.

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