Perhaps a better question is “Why am I subjected to racist and sexist lyrics in hip-hop music?” I ask this question because I know that the genre has many types of messages – not all of which are racist/sexist. How is it though, that some messages are more available or ubiquitous than others. On what basis are these messages distributed?
If you take as a given that not all rap artists are racist and sexist (it’s a statistical impossibility), then a fair question is one of quantity. How many rappers are must predicate an album or track around the psychoses of oppression and platitudes to nihilism and misogyny? Are non-racist, non-sexist rappers a minority and if so, to what extent? Of course, whatever the answer, you’d need some evidence to support your claim. How would you go about getting that? Perhaps you could go to the source or to The Source. Whatever the number reveal won’t begin to answer our fundamental question: Why am I being subjected to racist and sexist lyrics in hip-hop music?
Perhaps the answer is simpler than any of that. Perhaps the answer is so simple, it’s transferable: like rappers moving from a sound studio to a film studio. Ask yourself:
Why Directors make racist and sexist movies.
Overheard at the Blame the Media Bar: I hate movies. Directors are all idiots. They’re only in it for the money. It’s not it used to be. What happened to all the great directors? No more Orson Welles’. That damned “Departed” was so derivative. Scorcese hasn’t made a great movie in thirty years. Every movie is a slasher flick or something based on killing some young blonde. How come all of the actresses “earn their stripes” by appearing nude in movies? What’s up with that? I can hardly think of an actress whose boobs I haven’t been subjected to over the past 20 years. What about the beefcake? I’d rather play videogames than watch movies. Damn, they’re stilling killing the black guy in the beginning of the movie. How come the dark skin sister never gets the leading role? I love Halle, but don’t tell me she’s the only qualified sister in Hollywood. And what was up with Monster’s Ball? That was some bullshit – how did she and Diddy have such a chubby kid? Movies are eroding the values of American youth. Hollywood constitutes the worse scourge on American ethics in today’s society. Why are the guys from the Sopranos always getting arrested? These guys get a movie role and think they’re really that person. Some of those guys are real criminals. The business isn’t about art anymore. It’s all about cookie-cutter movies and getting the biggest payoff while putting out the cheapest product. You would think more of these directors would be concerned about America’s youth. What with the crystal meth thing out of control and all…and kids watch these movies then go and shoot up their school buildings. I mean, honestly, what kind of people allow their children to watch this stuff all day long and then act surprised when the children act this stuff out. I can’t wait to see Grindhouse!!
You can’t make this stuff up. You can only see lines of confluence and lines of divergence and if you don’t see what your looking for – look inside. How many Hollywood directors and producers are playing this game?
Then again, maybe racism and sexism do not exist in vacuums and do not become attached to our persons and to our identities as full grown ideologies. Perhaps these -isms grow in small pieces minute-by-minute and day-by-day until we’ve come to believe that the fragments constitute a quilt of contempt which we must wear to simply be ourselves.