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Ja Rule's words
hurt the broader community

Ja Rule's words
hurt the broader community


Blogger and social commentator Jasmyne Cannick challenges rapper Ja Rule to look at the true root of societal problems. Hint: It's not lesbians on MTV.

And I quote:

"Dating shows that's showing two guys or two girls in mid-afternoon. Let's talk about shit like that! If that's not fucking up America, I don't know what is." --Rapper Ja Rule,

Funny, all this time I thought President Bush was fucking up America. Go figure.

The statement above is from rapper Ja Rule on the September 25 congressional hearing on the lyrical content and imagery of African-American women in hip-hop.

In a recent interview with Complex magazine, Ja Rule decided to get political.

"They got my man Doug Morris under fire and shit, they got him going down to go speak to Congress about hip-hop lyrics, are you fucking serious?" Ja said. "There's a fucking black kid right now about to get 25 years for having a fight with some white kids over hanging the nooses over the white tree, let's get to that. Let's get into shit like that, because that's what's tearing up America, not me calling a woman a bitch or a hoe on my rap songs."

"And if it is, then we need to go step to Paramount, and fucking MGM, and all of these other motherfuckers that's making all of these movies and we need to go step to MTV and Viacom, and let's talk about all these fucking shows that they have on MTV that is promoting homosexuality, that my kids can't watch this shit," he continued. "Dating shows that's showing two guys or two girls in mid-afternoon. Let's talk about shit like that! If that's not fucking up America, I don't know what is."

"There's a lot of issues we can address besides hip-hop, but they want to put everything on us like we're the problem," Ja added. "This is going to be a shameless fucking plug, but I said, 'when everyone wants to point the finger, and ask why there's so much corruption, they only need to look in the mirror.' It starts with themselves."

Oh, where to start?

Ja is right in his reference to the Louisiana Jena 6 case, in which six black kids are on trial after a fight broke out over the hanging of nooses on their school campus.

However, that doesn't mitigate the fact that Ja calling women bitches and hos in his rap songs is contributing to the destruction of the black race. Because not only are his lyrics being heard by black children, who then by virtue of the song's popularity use those same words when referring to women, but he's also holding open the same door that Don Imus stepped through. Ja Rule and rappers like him who condone the use of derogatory terms to refer to women, in particular black women, are not only telling black America that it's OK to use those words but giving the OK to people of other races to use the same language when referring to black women.

I remember clearly the endless arguments during the Imus controversy in which whites said on national television that Imus's language was OK because "they"--meaning blacks--use the same words.

As for the idea of MTV promoting gays, Ja, who clearly has an issue with gay people, voices a poor argument and an even poorer comparison.

Instead of taking responsibility for using derogatory terms, Ja Rule points his finger at gays and lesbians and blames them for all that ails America.

But what Ja fails to recognize is that the congressional hearing in question is about stereotypes and degradation of black women (key word) in hip-hop and the entertainment industry--not about gays on television.

Before Ja started talking out the left side of his mouth, he might have taken some time to come up with a better argument. Perhaps he could have faulted film studios for the limited roles available to black women, as in, why do black female actors so often end up playing prostitutes, drug addicts, welfare mothers, etc?

Gays aren't the reason many black families live below the poverty line. Lesbians aren't the reason our prisons are overflowing with young black men and women. He can't blame gays for the senseless gang violence that continues to take the lives of many black men in our neighborhoods. And it's unfair to blame gays for the number of blacks who are unemployed in America. Oh, and gays weren't the reason he punched a man in a Toronto crowd in 2004 for shouting out remarks about his feud with 50 Cent. Nor were they the reason police that same year investigated whether a feud involving the Inc. led to a fatal shooting outside a nightclub party hosted by Ja Rule.

But what about 10-year-old Jerome Jenkins, sitting in the backseat of his mother's car, singing along with her as she drives while bumping Ja Rule's 2001 hit "Livin' It Up?"

Work with me for a minute:

Baby, this ain't your typical, everyday, one night thing

It's a physical, I'ma fuck you tonight thing

Fuck, knowin' your name, jump yo' ass in the Range

And roll over, gettin' blown while blowin' the doja

Bring head to a closure--that's a good bitch

Before it's all over, I'ma meat this bitch

Probably treat this bitch

mo' betta

Cause if you ain't know, thugs and ladies go together

Poppin' my collar partna--who in the spot?

Baby, Rule in the spot; and the mug and the watch ugly

Half the hos hate me, half them love me

The ones that hate me only hate me cause they ain't fucked me

And they say I'm lucky; you think I got time

to fuck all these hos and do all these shows?

Or flight in the lama, Dodge, and white Rolls

Uh-oh, another episode

Bitches, just wanna hold a name that's active

That's why they suck dick with mo' passion than average

And I ain't mad at'cha; never leave you alone

Cause we fucks when I'm home, phone sex when I'm gone

We both grown, both got minds of our own

Plus I freaks off like O-Dog in Love Jones

Been in, many zones, baby one hos, two hos

From, prissy bitches to hos that do porno

But you know, the Rule be livin' it up

And got all these hos, givin' it up

I like a, little ooh baby, how cute are you?

With a body that rides on sexual

I got a stick, I'll ride right next to you

Do a doughnut, and cut, then I'll open it up

On the freeway, dick in the mouth, foot on the clutch

Rule bitch, not givin' a fuck

That was Ja in 2001--just imagine what words he's added to his vocabulary in the last six years?

So little Jerome, thanks in part to Ja Rule but mostly to his mother for playing it around him, learns at a young age that women are bitches and hos and are to be fucked. And hey, if Mama is singing it and saying it, it must be so. Right?

Now, if you ask me, that's what's contributing to bringing down black America. Our kids are being taught from a young age to disrespect women, by the lyrics of rappers like Ja Rule and by parents who care more about bumpin' their song than about how its lyrics affect their children.

This fall Ja Rule will release The Mirror, his seventh solo album--and sixth attempt at a comeback--thanks to Universal Motown.

But I'd like to say that Ja Rule would do well to take his own advice and take a good long look in the mirror. There's got to be a reason all those past comeback attempts have proven unsuccessful. Perhaps if he spent more time focusing on self-development and left the politics of hip-hop to artists who actually make the charts, he wouldn't have to stage a comeback year after year.

There's an old saying: If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. Somebody must have lied and told Ja he had the solution.

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

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