Three energetic young girls from Arcadia High School have been successful in having 20 offensive Rap songs banned from their high school prom dance. The trio got 1,000 other students to sign a petition excoriating Rap tunes that employ against women derogatory terms such as “bitches” and “Hos.”
With their campaign the girls of the Arcadia High Women’s Health and Issues Club convinced school administrators to drop the songs from the prom music playlist.
Club members were not advocating for replacement songs nor for any particular genera of music, just to eliminate songs that featured abusive language toward women, presented women as objects, or treated women as “animals.”
Naturally, these girls are catching all manner of guff from other students. This junk Rap music is very popular with kids despite the misogynistic lyrics, the low level of intelligence celebrated in them, the bad language, and the low-class, thug lifestyles often pervading them.
Replies from fellow students also reveals that logic and a knowledge about the issue of what is “free speech” are subjects of which these kids are unfamiliar. Kids are railing that the girls are “against free speech,” and that they are “evangelizing everybody around them to follow their narrow minded credo.” Naturally, these kids opposing getting rid of the junk music haven’t a clue what they are talking about.
No, this effort should be celebrated. Rap music is the one of the most baneful influences on our youth today and it is about time that people returned to a more respectful way of talking about women in popular culture. All too often girls are over sexualized and their gender little respected.
But here is the thing about efforts like this Rap music ban. It is not a quashing of “free speech.” It is not “censorship.” Only a government can censor speech. If these girls get enough people to stand against this Rap music junk, they have created a community standard that is supported by a majority and that community has every right to get rid of something it doesn’t like. This is one of the most common examples of societal evolution through the democratic process.
Further, these girls neither advocated for, nor tried to force other kids to be barred from listening to this junk Rap in their private lives. These kids can listen to their junk Rap any time they like in their private lives.
The club merely advocated for a set of standards, garnered support from the student body, and convinced the school to join the effort. This is how society and democracy works.
So, kuddos to the girl’s club at Arcadia High School. There is no harm at all in trying to foster awareness of the true meaning of the lyrics in these songs. If more people turned away from this junk music maybe this sorry excuse for a musical genera will fade away for lack of an audience?