7 Hip Hop Songs (and Artists) That Perpetuate the Dehumanization of Women
Rap is one area of music that I truly have a mixed relationship with. In some senses, I love the genre. The flow of the poetry they write, and the ease in which some of them can spit it is impressive. Rappers like Immortal Technique, Lupe Fiasco, and a supergroup like WZRD, featuring Kid Cudi and Dot Da Genius (who’s debut album has exactly ZERO defamatory comments and expressions aimed at women) tend to break the mold, and bring real intelligence and a sense of respect to the genre. But for every one rapper or hip hop artist that respects women, there seem to be two who are quick to remind the gender that, to them, they are nothing more than sandwich-making-cum-receptacles. It is 2012, how about we break that trend? How about we buck them off the horse and tell them it’s no longer OK? Should the whole genre suffer because of some classless assholes? No, but those classless assholes should be called out, and it is our job to do that. Maybe THEN they will know that they’ve done something wrong. That this stuff should not be tolerated. We stop buying their records, and supporting their misogyny, and they stop making money. They feel it in the wallet. If that is where we have to hit these guys (and gal), so be it. But enough already. The world needs to grow up, and this needs to stop.
50 Cent: Candy Shop
Early on in my writing career I got very little advice from anyone. But I was told one thing that stuck with me. Never say anything bad about Fifty Cent. No joke.
I was told that the man has lawyers who are more akin to sharks (aren’t all lawyers, though?) and they are KNOWN for shutting down blogs that have said less than favorable things about Mr.Jackson. But guess what? That’s nonsense. I am like a tree falling in the woods, but no one’s around. Did I even make a sound? Plus, I am not calling out Curtis Jackson. I am calling out Fiddy Cent. The image Curtis wears to sell records.
He is carved out of stone and archaic stereotypes.
I truly believe it was this song that made me fall out of love with the genre a little bit. Everything about it, from it’s “bad fourth grade poetry” feel of the writing, to the declaration that he will “let” them lick the lollipop (I couldn’t even type that without feeling a tad bit stupider), this song is everything that is wrong with how pop music and the media treat women. Oh, you will LET them lick your penis? Wow, how kind of you! Because you have one of those Cancer-curing penises, right?
No? Oh, oh, because you are a baseline chauvinist, whose constant dehumanization of woman has helped you become a millionaire.
Oh, my bad.
Nelly: Tip Drill
I know, I know. I thought Nelly was dead, too. I’m sorry to bring his name up. But this song, much like the song mentioned above, is SO bad, if a friend passed it to me written on a napkin, drunk, and asked what I thought of the rap he wrote, I would tell him he should consider suicide while looking him directly in the eye.
Let me give you the basic rundown of that this song is about. Nelly wants to have sex with this woman, but it must be due to her ass, because she is ugly.
So imagine how the poor girl feels when this disfigured creature is trying to seduce her with second grade semantics.
So in this song, he doesn’t even make any qualms or disguise it. He is breaking down the idea of the female into just a body. A headless body. Yeah, when you think about it from a psychological standpoint, you realize how messed up it is.
But, have you EVER noticed how many print ads feature “headless” woman? Well, now you will. Sorry, your world is about to change.
It’s not just rap, you see. It’s mass media.
Once I noticed this was a means of advertising, I started noticing how much I saw it every day.
Sometimes, they are cut off just above the chin.
In some ads, they are broken down to being a floating vagina, surrounded by phallic objects.
Sometimes, it is so blatant, you won’t even have an idea what they are selling. This one must be selling metaphorical money shots.
But even the biggest brands are doing it right under our noses, and no one seems to object.
So as you can clearly see, I said that rap PERPETUATES the problem in some cases, like these. I never said it invented the problem. No, we did that.
Ja Rule: Bitch Better Have My Money
I can almost hear how this one went down at the studio.
Ja Rule: Hey Fellers, I should do one of those “woman are real stinkers” songs that so many of my hip hop brethren have done before me.
Generic Producer Guy: I like it! This could work! Want to pretend you’re a pimp???
Ja Rule: Um..Heck and YES!!! *Does a square dance and sips some milk
This is his “Ja gonna rape you” pose. No, really. it GENUINELY is.
So do you see what I just did in that preceding scenario? I ultimately took away Ja Rule’s “culture” in the same manner that he seems to desire to take away a woman’s sense of self and her worth among us as people. I even mentioned “milk” as a visual cue to make you see the color white, ultimately making it work on two levels. One conscious, one subconscious. Deep, I know. I don’t write because it pays well.
I write because I have stuff like this to say. And thank you for listening, by the way.
Too Short: Call Her a Bitch
The art of subtlety in some hip hop is mind-boggling. Some wordsmiths can tap dance around the language like it is as easy as breathing. And then there is stuff like this. Here, I will paraphrase one stanza for you from this song, so you know just what you are working with.
” Maybe if we like, photoshop a halo over me or some shit, people won’t know I suck.”
” I said ‘Bitch, why you such a stupid hoe?’ You lil’ bitch, you never could fuck with this. And every bitch that don’t like it, she can suck my dick.”
Honestly, I don’t know what he just said, either. But I am pretty sure it is the most hate filled thing that has ever come out of a mouth that didn’t live just below a tiny mustache.
Best Hitler joke, ever? Maybe. It just might be.
This is MC.Tiny Stache giving a shout-out to his homeboys.
So try and understand. A MAJOR record label executive heard this song, and payed this guy money for this. Yes indeed, folks. This is the world we live in.
Lil John: Get Low
I know there are songs way more offensive than this, but truthfully, not that many. Do you guys (and gals) even know what “skeet skeet skeet” means? Rather than tell you, and shame my friends and family, I will just link it for you to find out right here.
Suffice it to say, how this got on the radio, I’ll never know. Actually, how most of these songs did I’ll never know. This one is not even so much offensive to woman, as it is offensive to anyone with taste and the tiniest bit of class.
The Blackula remake starring Lil John is coming along quite well.
So this entry begs the question: What is it about rappers putting “Lil” in their name that makes them act so freakishly retarded? No, seriously, you want more proof…..
Lil Wayne: Lick It Like A Lollipop
Wait, really? You guys are so bad at this that you are already using each others hooks, with the words BARELY switched around? You know, I could go on for days about this dude. From being a terrible Father to his daughter (don’t believe me? Think I am talking shit? Watch this, and then tell me differently), to his swigging of “cough syrup” and walking around in a stupor, everything about this man is disgusting. Actually, I just used the term “man” wrong. Almost confused a f*cked up little boy with a man for a minute.
I was talking to God the other night, and he was like: Rappers, keep my name outchya mouth. And off your damn eyelids! I was on peyote, by the way.
I feel like I could stand here and rant about this dude for a long while. Notice I keep calling him “this dude”? Yeah, from my short time spent in the hood, I have learned that is a sign of disrespect. So thusly, I am disrespecting him but taking away his name. See, I really am doing all I can.
The only reason I don’t continue to make fun of him is, between his lyrics and his appearance, I fear that he may actually be mentally retarded. And I don’t think it’s cool to make fun of retarded people. Well, depends on what day you ask me, but I worked protecting them for six years, so I think that speaks volumes.
Nicki Minaj: Stupid Hoe
There you have it, people. The big “twist ending”. I am like the M. Night Shlingadong of internet writers. That’s right, there is a woman on the list. Though I use the term “woman” loosely.
Years and years of women, fighting for their rights. Their equality on every front. Their every struggle, every perseverance, spit directly on by one of their own. Please understand, I say one of their own, but even I am not sure what Nicki MInaj is. She is something between a cartoon, a caricature, and the worst thing ever.
“Don’t worry guys, I’ll objectify myself AND my gender for you.”
This really was it. The culmination of it all. Queen Latifah wrote a song about how a woman is not “a bitch or a hoe”. That was progressive. That was ahead of it’s time. Years later, in one fell swoop, one space creature disguised as a woman undid all of that. And the worst part, she wasn’t being ironic. She wasn’t being witty or subversive.
She was being a stupid hoe. That is the one and only time I can use that and think it’s OK.
Now THAT’S ironic.
People I Shouldn’t Even Need To Mention On This List:
Chris Brown=Human trash.
Jay Z= 99 Problems may have hinted at a problem, but he is reformed post child-birth. Illuminati for life, yo.
Eminem=Pushes buttons on purpose
Snoop Dog (and)Dr.Dre=I played The Chronic album too much when it came out ( I was a kid, cut me some slack) to list these two. Plus, Snoop is no longer a dog. He is a lion now, haven’t you heard?
Meow Yow Yow, Yippe yo, Yipee yay, Snoop Lion in the motherfuzzy HOUSE!
And both artists have somewhat abandoned their misogynistic views, to their credit.
Please understand, with my job as a ghostwriter at SoManyMP3s, I review this stuff. All of it, time and time again. Every review you see over there for the past six months, yeah. That was written by me, 99% of the time. This means, the good, the bad, and the ugly. And I love all music, anyone who truly knows me, knows I adore it on all levels (ofcourse, being the spastic overachiever I am, I have recorded around twenty hours of original music over the last decade, in every genre imaginable. I even did a Reggae song just to see if I could, and I swear, you would have no idea a stupid white guy with a mohawk was the one singing and playing). My point being, this was by no means an attack on rap music. Truthfully, I loved Run DMC before I even KNEW who The Beatles were. So again, not an attack on rap.
I would attack Chris Brown, though. I know that may make me no better than him, but seriously, f*ck that dude.
While it may not be an attack on rap music, it is an attack on the simple-minded-chauvinistic- hate-filled-rape-talk that gets passed off on modern radio as being OK. This stuff is just not OK. And I will say it as many times as I can, to anyone who is willing to listen, in as many ways as I can, until we can all agree.
It’s just not OK.