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Hip Hop On Trial Debate: Let’s Just Agree To Disagree

June 27, 2012 · Posted in editorial · 13 Comments 

I must say, watching this live hip-hop debate that was on Youtube today, I was getting very frustrated. Everyone is going to have an opinion, and everything can and will be debated. That’s just how society works. There have been times that I have written something on here and it’s gone on to be a huge debate in the comment section. Personally, I enjoy stirring up a little discussion. I’ve had the Jay-Z versus Nas, Ether versus Takeover, Biggie versus Pac, Red Sox versus Yankees (Red Sox Nation beotch!) arguments NUMEROUS times in my life. Ten times out of ten it’s ended in a situation where we agreed to disagree. When you have two conflicting opinions and preferences battling each other out, we seem to always forget about the thing that started the argument in the first place. The fact that everyone is entitled to their OWN opinions. We can sit here and argue punch lines and who’s diss was better when it came to the Jay-Z/Nas feud. We can argue the greatest album, rapper, lyricist, generation, and the list goes on. The beauty of debate INSIDE of hip-hop is that all of these artists feed off of each other. They use that as a fuel to be better each and every time they step in that booth. It’s a beautiful thing.

So what frustrated me so much today watching this debate, was the fact that a bunch of snobby politicians, college professors, and social activists felt the need to degrade and judge an art because they didn’t approve of the content. If I wanted to end this argument in two words, I’d simply say, “don’t listen.” But for how mainstream hip-hop can be nowadays, it’s sort of hard to avoid. I just don’t understand how they continue to blame hip hop for crime, stereotypes, sexism, etc. HELLO, that shit has been going on for years! Growing up we were always taught to express how we feel. Never to bottle anything up, because it wasn’t good for you. There are people who are okay with that and are really good at doing it. Hip hop artists, and yes they are artists, can speak FOR those people who aren’t good at expressing it themselves. Most rappers began rapping for that exact reason. Why don’t they look at the fact that it’s what got most of these rappers out of those dire situations. They aren’t like a college professor who has a classroom or an auditorium to express their opinion, and life lessons. They aren’t like politicians or activists that give speeches, and speak to congress and the mass media. Rappers have a notepad and a recording studio. They express themselves from self-experience and speak for those who may have or still are going through the same thing.

Personally, I love the story telling and emotion behind hip-hop. I was fortunate enough growing up that I didn’t experience 90% of what I enjoy listening to. I also didn’t let what I listened to influence me either. Regardless of what you listen to, watch, or witness, you still have that natural instinct inside of you to know what’s right or wrong. What should be treated as entertainment, or advice. As someone who is very passionate about music, and really invest myself into understanding everything I listen to, I take offense to these claims that hip-hop is destroying our youth. Sure, there are going to be people that are influenced by ANYTHING. Shit, I go to the clubs and all I see is Pauly D wannabes. Talk about degrading women? Jersey Shore has a bigger influence today than anything in hip hop. What makes calling a woman a “grenade” any less degrading than a “bitch” or a “ho?” That’s still getting national media attention every week. You won’t catch me in a tanning booth, “blowing out” my hair, or fist pumping to house music just because I see these idiots do it every week. It’s made for entertainment.  I don’t mean to stray from my point though.

Personal preference and accepting individualism seem to get mistaken quite often. It’s rare for anybody to have a mind of their own, but as soon as they do someone is ready to try and conform them. I know what I like, and I know not everybody is going to like the same things. I also know that a lot of things I enjoy aren’t necessarily who I am. Just because I’m bumping “Gimme the Loot” down the street and rapping every lyric doesn’t mean I condone stick ups and I’m ready to have a shoot out with the cops. It just means I love and appreciate the poetry, the rhyme schemes, the art of storytelling, and the passion of one of the greatest hip hop artists of all time. Not everybody is tuned the same, and not everybody is going to react the same way to ANYTHING in life. Point blank, period. Not everyone is tuned the same way, and that what makes the world we live in so beautiful. So let’s stop trying to take away from creativity just because we want to place blame on something. Just remember all you politicians, professors, activists, and members of the media that when you point your finger at something, you got 3 pointing back at you.

Follow me on Twitter: @TheMikeDaSilva


13 Responses to “Hip Hop On Trial Debate: Let’s Just Agree To Disagree”

  1. Nick Amaral on June 27th, 2012 2:38 am

    I agree with Mike. Fuck you if you dont.


    ichyowie Reply:

    @Nick Amaral, you just contradicted yourself smh and went against the whole point of the article…it defends peoples opinions and you sit here saying fuck you if you dont agree with yours? come on


  2. markus on June 27th, 2012 2:41 am

    The problem I see is that what you hear on the radio is NOT hip-hop. As we all know most of what is played on “hip hop” stations is shitty rap songs. I love rap. I can’t go a day without it. But the truth is that a lot of dumb people are influence by rap and believe half of the shit these rappers say. I know a lot of idiots that will listen to lyrics like “What’s your body count nigga/ I’m double digits” (Ross) and then think that murder is cool. Not all the listeners out there are smart enough to realize it is all just entertainment and lies.


  3. TheMikeDaSilva on June 27th, 2012 2:45 am

    @markus, I definitely agree, but the point I was making was that people get influenced by anything. What bothered me was that there was a full out debate on the fact that hip hop was to blame when things like TV, movies, and video games play just as big of a role if not bigger. Just thought it was strange to place blame on one thing.


    markus Reply:

    @TheMikeDaSilva, That’s very true there is a lot more things to blame for the current state society not just music. I apologize for straying away from your point. I haven’t had a chance to see the debate. My comment was based solely on the post.


  4. MosDef on June 27th, 2012 4:20 am

    Good article hermano. In my opinion its just everything all put together. Tv, media, radio ect. Like you said MTV, BET are all a joke really with all the reality shows going on then you have “hip hop” stations playing these songs that just makes peoples points, that hip hop just has a bad message and content. I honestly really don’t care hence i have not listened to the radio in years. I mean maybe some of us are not stupid enough to do things rappers say but go on twitter or FB and just look at people shit hahaha Teens thinking swag is cool and the list goes on and on lol Anyways back to the article good read


    2 Reply:

    @MosDef, HipHop is nothing to proof for somthing.. Itz a Lifestyle and for some people a world to escape in


  5. The Royal One on June 27th, 2012 4:50 am

    It doesn’t make sense to me. Hip Hop is the reason the youth is trouble but yet you have video games like Call of Duty & Halo promoting murder, tv shows like CSI & first 48 that advertise murder, movies like Scarface & The Godfather making it cool to be a gangster and make moves hurting people for power by any means and only hip hop is getting the blame. That’s bullshit.

    I listen to rap artist like Pac, Biggie, & Em and never got influenced or attempting anything they told me about in their music I just like listening to some storytelling with a nice flow and crazy beat.


  6. The Royal One on June 27th, 2012 4:52 am

    It doesn’t make sense to me. Hip Hop is the reason the youth is trouble but yet you have video games like Call of Duty & Halo promoting murder. Then t.v shows like CSI & first 48 that advertise murder. Then movies like Scarface & The Godfather making it cool to be a gangster and make moves hurting people for power by any means and only hip hop is getting the blame.
    I listen to rap artist like Pac, Biggie, & Em and never got influenced or attempting anything they told me about in their music. I just like listening to some storytelling with a nice flow and smooth beat.


  7. Jorge on June 27th, 2012 4:55 am

    Love this article! Hit the spot and finally someone said what I had on my mind :) I’m ok with the YOLO shit but I hate when stupid uneducated kids use it in the wrong way. Where you think Drake got that from? 2 Pac “Thug Life” It means do what you like and believe what YOU believe in and have fun. Not to party every weekend and smoke/Drink and do stupid shit. The OGs need to sit the generation down and teach us how they made it and to push the movement on and make it stronger. Good thing we still have Lupe, Kanye, Nas and others that push Hip Hop to the next level and say fuck a radio single and let’s make music!


  8. Curt on June 27th, 2012 5:33 am

    I think social media tries to find reasons for everything on a bigger scale. When in reality most of the problems the youth face is just having a good stable home environment individually. Having somebody to teach them right from wrong and to judge situations the right way. Social media tries to tell you that what you see and hear on tv and through music is the reason behind a kids misbehaviors. When it’s probably something underneath that he never got the attention he deserved or never had a way to express themselves properly. Basically it’s all about money. Activists get too sue the music artist claiming they influenced there son to shoot someone when in reality they should have just been paying attention to there kid a little more.


  9. George Bush on June 27th, 2012 5:34 am



  10. Eighty Eight on June 27th, 2012 7:49 am

    It’s hard to disagree with you) Also, I think that all sides of life should be reflected by art to get the picture of the real world we live in. And this world is not ideal. Talking about problems, crime, etc. does not necessarily mean that you love these things. No need to say there are lots of hip-hop tracks with interesting concepts, clever ideas and positive messages


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