Vern’s Venting: Straight Outta Exploitation

By Lavern Merriweather:

There’s been a big brouhaha about this year’s Oscars omitting black people – hell people of color period – as nominees. Led by power couple Will and Jada Smith, several prominent black artists including director Spike Lee have said they will join the couple’s boycott of the 2016 ceremonies. Even a hashtag called #Oscarssowhite was spawned by this complaint. The main snub that has caused so many tongues to wag is the biopic “Straight Outta Compton” which is a film about the original gangsta rap group NWA based out of California. A number of black folks are mad that this particular film failed to get even one possible Oscar nod.

That may very well be a legitimate beef. I don’t know, because I haven’t seen the film, nor do I have any intention of doing so. I also have no dog in the battle black people are having with the Oscars. The movie industry is racist and has been for the longest of times. So black people should not act shocked all of a sudden.

Still, that is not what I have a problem with in regards to this picture. It’s the criticism the movie and the group have gotten.

I am forever DONE with a capital D of the holier-than whining from high minded Negroes! I’m sick to absolute death of black folks and two-faced white people thinking it’s their job to save the soul of hip-hop. Self-righteous prick Macklemore even had the nerve to say that he got into rap because he was bothered by the negativity. I wonder then why isn’t he as troubled by the sleaze in country, metal and 80’s rock music.

Some pious hypocrites blasted the movie for the groups’ raunchy lyrics and lead rapper Dr. Dre’s past abuse towards women. Granted, I don’t support violence against women. However, if this were a film about Motley Crue and they left out drummer Tommy Lee’s history of violence towards ex-wife Pamela Anderson, would anybody be as upset then? I doubt it the same way I don’t believe anyone would cry foul if this were a bio about the legendary British group The Beatles. Not only did lead singer/songwriter John Lennon beat his first wife Cynthia, he wrote about it in one of his songs. John once punched a young woman in the face and gave her a bloody nose when he was 18 in the late 1950’s after she refused to have sex with him. Yet, amid all the accolades he gets, that aspect of his life is overlooked. I get that a lot of white folks hold John in high regard because he died so young and tragically. Still, the guy was a woman beating thug. Nobody had any qualms about pissing on Ike Turner’s grave due to his history with singer/wife Tina. Yet, we aren’t supposed to go there with John Lennon? I say fuck that!

On top of the woman beating, many are giving the film grief because of misogynist words uttered by Ice Cube, Dre and the late Easy E. Okay black folks, how many times do we have to go over this? If we are going to be upset about sexism in entertainment then we need to call out EVERYBODY or nobody. I don’t recall hearing a peep from either black or white folks’ mouth when the movie about con artist mogal Jordan Belfort called “Wolf of Wall Street” came out. I couldn’t tell if that were about the life story of Jordan or Playboy creator Hugh Hefner with the generous amount of white female flesh on display. Then again, that’s always the sticky wicket ain’t it? We are very forgiving about white female sexuality rammed down our throats. But we are quick to get disgusted if the same thing is coming from black people.

Memo to black people: don’t give me that crap about rap or hip-hop going too far. Nobody said jack when Led Zeppelin did the song which contained this little gem “Squeeze my lemon until the juice runs down my leg”. Yes I know that was previously sung by a black male blues guitarist. Yet, why is it when a white male from England says it, we are supposed to giggle with glee while happily knowing that he pulled a fast one on our parents. The aforementioned Motley Crue once did a song where lead singer Vince Neil warbled “And now, I’m killing you. Watch your face is turning blue”. Forrest Gump would know what that fucker was saying. Yet, the high and mighty black folks committee of morality were silent as usual.

Another thing I’m tired as fuck of Negroes thinking is it ain’t our place to critique white people’s music, movies, commercials, graphic novels, girlie magazines, books, etc. I don’t give a shit if it comes off as tit for tat. So what!? They can reprimand us for our musical preferences, but we have to stay quiet about theirs? I don’t think so. As for those Negroes who moan that black kids are much more influenced by black imagery than anything else, I call bullshit. Black kids – like black adults – do not live in a damn vacuum. Whatever offensive shit made by white folks that we see, they see too. We can’t keep pretending that by ignoring it, it will automatically protect young black sensibilities from white music.

Another thing that fries my eggs is the notion that popular rapper Jay-Z should stop using the word ‘bitch’ since he has a daughter, Blue Ivy, with wife Beyonce. Puh-lease! People were very hushed about white rapper Eminem using then abusing the word ‘bitch’ despite him having a little girl as well. Hell, Eminem’s offspring Hailey is almost a grown woman. So he has had his child longer than Jay. Yet not one person has ever called Eminem to the carpet for saying despicable things about Hailey’s mother and grandmother respectively. This is why when Negroes try to act so sanctimonious about rap I refuse to take them seriously.

There are even some black women on the web that claim they love metal music. Hold up, wait a minute! So those heffas can appreciate songs from white men that degrade women, yet act like the second coming of Jesus with rappers? Black people can’t have it both ways. The bottom line is that nobody gave a rat’s ass until white kids started listening. Black people should have been disgusted before the white people showed up. Either that or be just as disturbed by what they see coming from white people. Such as people like “Boondocks” creator Aaron Macgruder who trashes rap while praising the HBO hit “The Sopranos” and Quentin Tarantino’s movie series “Kill Bill”.

This is how we can be often times, become humble when massah tells us that what we are doing is wrong even as he does it his damn self! I for one will no longer allow black performers to be held to a different standard of what visuals they choose to express. Unless we hold the dominant society as accountable as we hold each other then it’s our ridiculous, insincere moral mindset that we really should be boycotting.


3 thoughts on “Vern’s Venting: Straight Outta Exploitation

  1. I’m what you call “free range black ” I guess, and grew up during the height of 80s metal hair bands, and the heyday of rock music. Even went to a few concerts. Rappers and hip hop isn’t doing anything different than what Rockers have been doing for fifty years. Sleeping with underage girls, doing drugs, if not selling them, objectifying white women and talking shot about authority.

    What Rappers are doing is not new.

    I’ve watched more than a few music videos back then too and MTV, was thoroughly racist and hypocritical in not showing videos by black artists at the same time they were showcasing the sexually charged and violent videos of White rockers. Anybody who has a beef with the objectification of black women in rap videos has obviously never watched music videos by white rock groups.

    When Punk was at its height,vthat was some of the most violent music ever created. A handful of white people complained, but parental guidance stickers on albums weren’t invented until rappers became popular.

    I know my musical history and you’re damn right. Plenty of people use rap as an excuse to express their racism or self hatred.

    1. Some of those singers were also violent assholes that beat women or were accused of it. Peep the accusation against Billy Idol by this woman saying he tried to set her on fire and punched her in the face. Honestly rappers really have nothing on those fools

  2. Thank you so much for this commentary, Vern! You brought up stuff that I never thought about! Again, thank you!

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