The world was all of a fluster about Dr Dre bringing out his long-awaited album on Friday, eagerly downloading and soaking up his newest offering. My boyfriend was no exception to this, and on Saturday morning we sat in the sunshine and listened with baited breath.
I'm no fragile little flower, so I was ready to be mildly offended by the lyrics at some point (what is rap with a sprinkling of misogyny amiright?) But even I was taken aback by Eminem's verse where he says the following little beauty;
"Ain't no one safe from, non-believers there ain't none/I even make the bitches I rape cum."
Yep. A grown man in 2015 said these words.
Hitting Twitter that night with a gin, I saw that plenty of people were equally disgusted. My personal favourite came from Desus Nice,
"Eminem really almost the age where you gotta start getting your prostrate checked & he's still unnecessarily rapping about rape."
Some kind fellow decided to inform me that I should just come to 'expect' this from Eminem. So, young sir, here are 5 reasons why - although we may unfortunately have to expect his bullshit - we do not have to accept it.
1. There are approximately a MILLION other things he could rap about that aren't horribly offensive. I have some suggestions if you're all out of ideas, Em, just drop me an email. But aren't you supposed to be a creative genius, Mr Mathers? While we're on the subject, did no one else in the studio stop for one second and suggest that he tone it down? Just a casual "Mate, that's a bit far" wouldn't have gone amiss.
2. People like to emulate their idols. So, let's be clear, I'm not saying there's a direct causal response from listening to a rap glamourising rape and actually committing the crime. But when you're exposed to something enough it does become more normalised. It's called Rape Culture, Eminem, and it's very much alive and kicking.
3. He's too old to be a misogynist. A point made by several people on Twitter, suggesting that really a man of his age should know better. Personally I don't think being a misogynist and being older are mutually exclusive, but the general consensus is that you mature as you age. Unfortunately Eminem seems to have missed that memo. Maybe he's still using fax machines.
4. He is showing complete disregard for any survivors of sexual violence. Really swift way to alienate a large proportion of your audience, Slim, considering there are on average 293,066 reported rapes each year in the US. And it's a hugely under-reported crime, so it's likely that that accounts for only a slice of the problem. It might be all one big antagonistic lol for Eminem, but it's an unnecessary stab in the heart for all survivors.
5. Talking of his antagonistic lolz, it was all very cute and novel when he first appeared on the scene, all peroxide hair and sarcasm. But the music industry is bulging at the seams nowadays. Soz babes.
As the same helpful man on Twitter said to me, "Good thing about choice is your (sic) not forced to listen to him."
You're right, I think I'll take you up on that offer. And I urge you to do the same.