Jumping into my car after a long day of school, I excitedly flipped on the radio hoping to sing along to some upbeat, catchy music. However, what blared from the speakers immediately had me reaching for the dial.
A lot of the popular music that comes out nowadays tries to cram as many double entendres into three minutes and fifty-nine seconds as possible. Some songs bypass the wordplay altogether and make the lyrics as direct as possible.
For example, the clean version of Enrique Iglesias’s new song is titled “Tonight I’m Loving You.” The actual name replaces “loving” with a much more explicit word. With songs like this populating the radio, it’s difficult to find a catchy song that doesn’t sound like it was ripped from a 900 call.
Men receive the brunt of the complaints for objectifying women in song lyrics. However, Rihanna’s recent songs like “S&M” and “Rude Boy” help to glorify abusive relationships. Hearing Rihanna sing about liking abusive actions after the Chris Brown incident makes me feel especially uncomfortable.
I don’t want to be singing blithely along to songs that put these offensive statements in a good light. These songs creep me out whenever I hear them. Pop songs don’t necessarily have the wittiest or the smartest lyrics, but they don’t need to be completely inane either. Nor do they need to be about drinking to the point of oblivion or one-night stands.
People like to believe that we’re not influenced by songs, but in actuality song lyrics remain in a person’s subconscious long after they’ve heard them. By releasing music that encourages offensive behavior, it perpetuates it.
Singers, as a rule, need to stop trying to beat each other in a race to be the most offensive singer out there. Right now, the songs are trying their hardest to appeal to so many people that they fall short. The music industry needs to realize that we are more intelligent than they make us out to be.