The Negative Influence of Southern Rap Music, Part 2
Continued from Part 1 (http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Negative-Influence-of-Southern-Rap-Part-1)
With current musical trends—led by Southern rap—dripping with raw, and in most cases perverted sexuality, its hard not to believe that the irresponsibility of today’s make-a-buck/damn-the-responsibility-oriented “artists” doesn’t have a negative impact on today’s crop of teens. The fact that most urban teens can sing every lyric to Trey Songz’ current ditty “All The Neighbors Know My Name” (due to, as the lyrics assert, the noise made during unrestrained sex between the artist and some imaginary woman) speaks volumes to the impact of such a negative application and use of creativity has on youth.
Granted, graphic and sexually unrestrained artists like Lil Kim and Foxxy Brown came along in the 90s, before Southern rap took hold of the current industry. However, they were novel aberrations to rap and popular music whom were ahead of their time given how such themes have become the current norm; there were still a host of other socially-conscious and purely entertaining rappers and lyrical storytellers around at the time who diluted their overall impact on music. But given the proliferation of [the] Southerners’ promotion of overwhelmingly negative imagery—with very few socially-conscious rappers absent to counter their impact—in current rap music, its not surprising that musical artists themselves believe that what they rap/croon about reflects a perception of reality (albeit warped) which feeds the notion that unrelenting sexuality without restraint or modesty is “normal.” It doesn’t help that lackadaisical active parenting, school systems fearful of litigation by misguided parents riding moral high-horses, and idolized political and sports figures seemingly embroiled in a new sex-related scandal weekly create the impression that [sexual] perversion is the new “normal.” Implicitedly, most of today’s musical artists themselves either have no clue as to the social effects of their music outside of its (questionably) artistic and entertainment value, or simply don’t care about anything other than their omnipresence in front of cameras and/or simply making (and flashing) money. And when the latter situation is the case, of course these artists (just like similarly-worshipped idols in the sports world) try to deflect responsibility by asserting that “I am not a role model.”
The problem this level of thinking creates among these new breed of rappers/entertainers is that, much like the “blunts” which many of them boastfully smoke, this type of thinking insulates them from reality. They are role models, albeit questionable ones. Just because they “make dollars” doesn’t mean they lack sense. If someone who in the public eye constantly is doing something which many young people impressionable kids (and oddly enough, a few adults) admires, likes, or follows, then that person—for better or worse—is a role model. Kids do emulate the ridiculously sagging pants, the gaudy flamboyant bling, and the mutilation of teeth in favor of gold/platinum “grills” (yes, I do know that some young people were sagging their pants before the rise of Southern rap music, but the current crop of rappers promotes this idiotic lack of fashion far more than previous regionally-based artists). Conversely, young urban youth in times past, when more socially-conscious rappers such as New-York-based Public Enemy, X-Clan, and Oakland-based Paris helped to promote the wearing of dashikis, Malcolm X hats, and African silhouetted medallions.