Does rap/hip-hop music encourage negative behavior? Some people feel rap and hip-hop music encourages degradation of women, violence, and crime. Other people think that rap offers an opportunity for political commentary and self-expression. Also people argue that rap music provides valuable information to young listeners. They feel that it tells the story of the black man’s struggle. Some also feel that it describes life in the eyes of a black person.
Originally, rap and hip-hop had a mission of uplifting the urban youth through music, but as it became more popular, it started to move away slowly from that goal. Where rap groups once brought fans together to work for social change and meaningful discussions on current events, most raps today is used as a tool of exploitation that promotes negative behavior, sexist attitudes, and criminal activity. Hip hop and rap music generally pushes teens into thinking that it is cool to be gangster and lead a life of crime.
Teenagers living in upper middle class or wealth neighborhoods too often adopt the style and attitudes associated with gangster while listening to this sort of music. They tend to think that it so cool to engage in acts the music describes without realizing what it means to become a member of a gang, to engage in petty crime such as vandalism, or even to commit serious crimes such as robberies and rape because they see music artists acting in the same manner. Rap and hip hop music exploits and sexualizes black women.
Black women are not showing positive images such as them naked on music videos men calling women out of their name of who they are and what they can be. The half naked women influence young girls to think being a video vixen that it is great for men to mistreat women. A video vixen is a female of color or mixed ancestry who strips off her clothes, and put into a rap video as a support. Images and lyrics promoting violence and sexism are also acknowledged to have had a negative effect on the perception of the young black male by the white community.
The infamous rap artist Tupac Shakur recorded a song entitled, “Bury Me a G,” from his album, “Thugs Life, Volume 1” that reflects the negative stereotype too often associated with all black men: “I got nothin’ to lose, sons, I choose to be a killer/ Went from bangin’ to slangin’/ Now I’m a dope dealer/ All my a paid the price to be the loss/Back in school/ Wrote the rules on getting’ tossed/ Popping rocks on the block was a past time/ Pack a 9 all the time. rap lyrics from Tupac and countless others are not only encouraging aggressive behavior in young people but also deterring them from pursuing more positive goals for their future. People outside the community, potential employers and police, teachers and community leaders, too often assume that rap fans who imitate the style of gangsters, who curse, fight, and even kill people, are capable of nothing else. The music promotes sex, violence, drug and alcohol use and abuse. It even degrades women, and speaks of violent crimes towards them. Rap music promotes violent and hostile behavior in young listeners.