You know how I feel about hypocrites. Thanks to Jose Lambiet, I can now introduce you to one of the most prominent ones.
I'm sorry to say it, but when they go low, she may go even lower.
That's right. The same First Lady whose powerful and emotional speech came down like a sledgehammer on Donald Trump’s vulgar comments about women and sexual assault last week in Manchester, N.H. is happy to invite even worse nasty talk to the White House.
Jose Lambiet, my favorite Florida journalist who, by the way, has a habit of scooping every reporter on the planet, did it again Sunday, writing a commentary in Gossip Extra, South Florida's online tabloid, that simply pointed out a disturbing fact:
"In the last seven years, Michelle and President Barack Obama have hosted "some of the crudest, foulest-mouthed rappers out there, thus legitimizing money- and fame-hungry cultural influencers whose demeaning lyrics urge a generation of young men to grope and objectify women."
Please understand that I have great respect for the work the First Lady has done/continues to do to empower women particularly in minority communities here and in oppressive cultures the world over. That's why I don't understand why she doesn't do a closer analysis of the White House guest list -- or, if she does, why she chums up with some of the music profession's most offensive mysogynists and allows them access to her family.
Lambiet identifies the White House rapper-favorites.
(I hope you will forgive my use of some of the offensive language these rappers have "popularized" in today's music culture. Repeating it is the only way I can make the point.)
- Ludicris. I start with this "artist" because he's a White House frequent flyer. He was one of the first and most influential "Dirty South" rappers to achieve mainstream success. How much respect does Ludicris' music show for women? Lambiet probably would laugh wryly and shake his head. He writes, "This guy’s lyrics include the self-esteem boosting song for little girls called 'Fatty Girl'." (The lyrics? “Yo girl you taste like a Cinnabun/ so sweet from the thighs to the cheek/ sex on the beach check the size of my meat.”)
- Kendrick Lamar. The Obamas are disgusted with Trump's locker room talk, as they should be. But what do they find appropriate with Lamar? We learn that in 2013, the rapper of "The Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe" "trashed up" Sunfest’s family night "with an hour and a half of n-words, f-bombs and c-bombs, the likes of which the festival had never heard." This was after the organizers asked him to structure his performance for young children because he would be on just before the fireworks show, when probably thousands of families would be in attendance. So, I wonder if the Obamas let their daughters, Malia and Sasha, listen to Lamar's "Hol’ Up": "Stewardess complimentin’ me on my nappy hair/If I can f--- in front of all these passengers ... Back in this bitch in the the back of that bitch/ Wit’ my back against the wall and yo’ bitch on the edge of my d---/ Jump off/ I call a bitch a bitch, a ho a ho, a woman a woman.”
- Jay Z. Beyonce's husband, and lest we forget, Beyonce is one of Michelle Obama's closest friends. Perhaps that's why Jay Z is such a White House regular. Jay Z is the convicted felon who stabbed a record producer at a nightclub in 2001. "Jay Z, who’s worth $520 million, is a major campaign contributor and fundraiser for the Obamas and the purveyor of fine songs like the one called 'Pussy,'" writes Lambiet. Here's how the child porn lyrics of "Pussy" celebrate women: “I-I know this girl we call her Sweet Cooch Brown/ Hands down Mami had the bombest pussy in town/ One dip in the girl pool, thatz all it took/ One sample of the snappa and ya ass was whooped.”
Now, I happen to agree that Trump's tacit approval of degrading women is disgusting by any standard, and entirely unacceptable in a president of the United States. I frankly believe he should seek professional help. But I have to wonder why the president and First Lady think it's OK to invite these foul-mouthed, women-demeaniners into the White House, of all places, to stand as role models and examples of success for our young people.
Or, do I mistake what an invitation to the White House means?
In misogynistic rap songs, violence is depicted as the most appropriate punishment for women who challenge male domination or who simply "offend" men, according to "Misogyny in Hip-Hop Culture."
By the way, I don't want to pick on just rap or hip-hop, as it's called. Sexism is rampant in other forms of music, too -- punk, metal and indie rock, for example. But since the 1980s, hip-hop artists more than any other have objectified women, demeaned women, and promoted violence and sexual abuse against women. It's a fact, it's a problem and it is being studied and otherwise addressed in universities and think tanks across the nation.
Either the First Lady is unaware and hasn't made the connection -- which I doubt -- or she's another hypocrite who delivers emotional sound bytes to make political hay.
“I can’t stop thinking about this," Michelle Obama said in New Hampshire of Trump's 2005 remarks. "It has shaken me to my core in a way that I couldn’t have predicted. The shameful comments about our bodies, the disrespect of our ambitions and intellect ..."
Thanks for the story, Jose. It was a sad but important reminder that Trump's "locker room talk" (wink, wink) is more prevalent, perhaps closer to home, than even the president and First Lady of the United States want to see. While it's true, Ludicris, Kendrick Lamar and Jay Z aren't trying to become the next president, they sure are favored with the company of the current one, his wife and, I'm told, his family.
Reach Nancy Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 228-282-2423. Twitter: NancyLBSmith