Last Sunday was, apparently, the Grammys. I know this not because I watch much TV (hardly any now that football season is over), but because (1) I happened to hear about it on the radio, and (2) my friends on Facebook started posting about someone by the name of “Chance the Rapper” sometime late Sunday evening. I know enough to know that any sort of pop-culture event such as this is likely to be distasteful, but, in a momentary lack of better judgment, I decided to look up some of the music that the industry has decided to put forward as an example of their best. I had no idea just how horrifying the “best” would turn out to be.
I hesitate to repost even the “clean” versions of the lyrics, simply because they are so offensive. Nevertheless, I find it illustrative to recognize just what level of depravity the music industry has decided to showcase as the “best.”
No Problem (Chance the Rapper, “Best New Artist”):
B**** I know you tried to cheat, you shoulda never took a nap, hey
F*** wrong with you? What you were thinkin’?
F*** you thought it was?
You talk that talk that make a lame a** n***a fall in love
Not me, though, b**** you can keep those
Mixtape (Chance the Rapper, “Best New Artist”):
I’m the only n***a still care about mixtapes
Bad little b***h, wanna know how lips taste
(She curious, she curious)
I swear I’m the only n***a still care about mixtapes
Bad little b***h, wanna know how the lips taste
That booty gon’ roll and it’s outta control
And these b*****s gon’ f**k off respect and that loyalty
All my b*****s lovin’ me and they spoil me
Don’t Hurt Yourself (Beyonce, “Best Urban Contemporary Album”):
Who the f*** do you think I is?
You ain’t married to no average b****, boy
You can watch my fat a** twist, boy
As I bounce to the next d***, boy
And keep your money, I got my own
Keep a bigger smile on my face being alone
Bad m**********r, God complex
Motivate your a**, call me Malcolm X
Yo operator, or innovator
F*** you hater, you can’t recreate her, no
You’ll never recreate her no, h*** no
F*** Up the Club (DJ Khaled, “Best Rap Album”):
4Hunnid! 4Hunnid, Hunnid!
Young n***a, young n***a, got a gun, run n***a
Painted all the rivers red, this blood s*** stuck with him
Hustle hard, hustle hard, bad b*****s, f*** ’em all
For Free (DJ Khaled “Best Rap Album”):
Would you f*** me for free?
You know this d*** ain’t free!
I got girls that I shoulda made pay for it
Got girls that I shoulda made wait for it
Got girls that’ll cancel a flight back home
Stay another day for it
You got attitude on na na
And your p**** on agua
And your stomach on flat flat
And your a** on what’s that?
And the list continues. These are just some of the first songs that I happened to find while looking through the various rap/hip-hop artists from Sunday night. The language in these few snippets alone is bad enough to make these songs R-rated. But more offensive still is how horribly insulting and demeaning these lyrics are (or should be) to women and African-Americans, the two groups which are purportedly the most victimized and persecuted in our country. Out of all the music that has been written in the last year, is the really the best we could come up with?
After getting over the shock and disgust of the so-called art that the music industry has put on a pedestal as an example of excellence in music, I was then struck by the utter hypocrisy which is continually showcased by liberalism in our country. If you don’t believe that the left is hypocritical, then simply try to imagine what would happen if Donald Trump held a press conference tonight, and uttered any of the lyrics listed above. Can you imagine the maelstrom of angry tweets, body-part-costume-clad protesters, and violent mobs that would follow? Take the “Women’s March” and multiply it by approximately ten thousand, and I think that might get us somewhere in the ballpark. Yet, if those same lyrics are spoken in a sort of sing-song chant, auto-tuned, and accompanied by synthetic drums and overly amplified bass, we hail it as “art” and the best that the music industry has to offer.
These double standards are indicative of the fact that in reality, they have no standards. Liberalism is not motivated, by and large, by principle. If they were, then they would be consistent in their outrage. Instead, they pick and choose, on a partisan basis, whether or not to be offended by a certain word or action. When a Republican utters something offensive to women behind closed doors, it’s an outrage and he (along with anyone who votes for him) is inciting rape and violence against women. When a musician sings about something far more offensive, we hail it as art.
Now, I imagine that on the off-chance that any liberals are reading this, they may have objections to what I’ve said so far. I’ve decided to preempt what I think are the most likely objections, based on past experience.
- Content like this is acceptable because it’s art.
Since when has the “art” label been an excuse for racism and violence? You can’t even get a boot-legged copy of “Song of the South” because it supposedly contains offensive content. That’s “art,” right? What’s the difference? I think we all know that liberals would be just as outraged about Trump’s comments about women if he rapped them wearing gold chains and baggy pants as they would otherwise. This isn’t about art, it’s about selective outrage when it suits your political agenda.
- Content like this is acceptable because it portrays the plight of oppressed African-Americans and women.
If these songs actually portrayed suffering and oppression, that would be a completely different story. I have no qualms about art that accurately depicts horrific events, even if they contain offensive content. Such art is sobering and should cause us to mourn the wrongs done against those demographics. That is not what these songs are about, and we all know it. We are lying to ourselves and disrespecting those who have actually suffered or experienced persecution if we try to equate a rapper’s lyrics about raping women to the suffering of a slave who is beaten to death. These songs depict the artists performing the offensive acts and perpetuating the attitudes that the left claims to hate. These songs aren’t about the suffering of minorities, they are about glorifying hideous, revolting actions, lifestyles, and attitudes.
- Content like this is acceptable because the people who are singing it are part of a minority group.
So, you want to punish people of one ethnic demographic for doing something, but not another? We have a word for that: racism.
- Content like this is acceptable because it makes me feel good.
This is perhaps the biggest argument for why this music is detestable and completely unacceptable. If this music has the power to make you feel “good” while listening to someone sing about violence, rape, and prostitution, then that should be a strong indication that you should not be listening to this sort of music. If the music caused us to soberly reflect on the moral decay of our country, then at least it might have some redeeming value. This music does exactly the opposite; it invites us to celebrate the very things that, in any other instance, we would find revolting.
- Content like this is acceptable because the artists singing it also sing clean/appropriate songs.
“Chance the Rapper took us to church last night, here’s how.” I’ve seen that headline, or variations thereof, multiple times in the last couple of days. I understand that some of the songs performed at the Grammys were remotely religious in nature. Now, I don’t know if “Chance the Rapper” (or any of the other performers from the Grammys) are Christians. But whether or not they are Christians, I wish that they would leave God out of their songs. By singing about God on one track, and then singing songs that make light of rape, prostitution, and violence the next, they are defaming God and associating Him with the sin and immorality that they sing about. I would rather all of their songs be filthy, immoral and violent, so at least everyone could recognize their music for what it really is, rather than being fooled by the one or two “clean” songs.
I’m sure there are countless other objections that the left might come up with, and I’m more than happy to hear and address them. But for now, I would claim that there are only two possible reactions to the music industry’s glorification of immorality and violence against women and African-Americans.
- Declare these songs to be the morally bankrupt trash that they are, and boycott the music industry (or at least the parts of the music industry that produce and promote this trash). Similarly, we must also agree that some of Trump’s comments about women were also offensive (though, dare I say, not nearly as offensive as any one of these songs).
- Accept the moral filth presented to us as “art” and turn a blind eye to the immorality it perpetuates. If you do this, you must also give Trump (and any other politicians) free license to be equally morally objectionable.
These are the only two logically consistent options. I fall in the first camp. I would hope that the vast majority of Americans also fall in this camp, although at the speed with which we’re abandoning our morality and sense of right and wrong, it’s hard to say. Anyone who falls in the second camp strikes me as a morally bankrupt individual, but at least they’re consistent.
As for the vast majority of liberals who likely fall in neither camp, and condemn Trump while applauding these artists, all I can say is that your credibility (what little of it you have left) is completely undermined by hypocrisy like this. If you really believe in fighting against oppression against women, great! Pick up your signs, put on your body-part costumes, and go protest the Grammys next year! If you really want to fight oppression against African-Americans, wonderful! Tell all these hip-hop artists to stop writing songs full of racial slurs that promote violence against people of color. If you don’t stand up to this promotion of violence and objectifying women, then you have absolutely no moral high-ground, and no place pointing the finger Trump or anyone else.