I had heard about a new, popular dance hall song with particularly offensive lyrics, but only went in search of it on the Internet after seeing this letter in the Gleaner.
This is the link to the song. WARNING. YOU MAY FIND THIS SONG OFFENSIVE.
The lyrics will offend many of us. Clearly not all. This is what one person posted on a thread discussing the song.
“Its called hyperbole…. He doesnt mean that he wants to rape women just that he would NEVER be a battyman. For example if someone says when pigs fly i will do ___ they dont mean they are waiting to see pigs fly. Its just a figure of speech.
The context in which potential kid says it makes it acceptable. (So long as this dejay doesnt make di paper a few weeks from now accused of
rape ). Otherwise i say it is just a darkly humorous line.”
So there are, unsurprisingly, different vews on how seriously to take the lyrics.
So how should we react?
That’s a real question. I don’t know the answer. The argument goes….if it’s being played in the dance hall space, we should leave it alone. It’s a song for adults, being enjoyed by adults.
The problem of course, is that it is almost certainly being played on buses, cell phones and that thousands of young people are hearing and absorbing this lyric. Will they be able to brush it off as “hyperbole”? Will public outrage make any difference one way or the other – other than to make the song even more popular? Those of us with children or teenagers in the house can sit them down and have a talk.
Not all young people have that kind of countering influence. So what about them?
Given the rest of the song, which is what we in the industry call NFAP (Not Fit for Airplay) it would be a little difficult even to suggest that teachers use it as a tool to start a discussion (they would have to do it, presumably without playing the song or making much reference to the rest of it)….so what do you think? Any ideas?