Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hip-hop homophobia?

Amongst others there is a relevant blog, but the commentators seem a bit wide of the mark to me. With regard to music with supposedly homophobic lyrics, there was a suggestion that they are 'just word' and thus not influential. I said:
I worry that by ignoring 'just words' that they might drip feed into people's minds and actually become an accepted and acceptable 'ideology'. References to violence that glamorise and encourage deadly conflict, torture, harassment and victimisation cannot be supported. I don't buy music or movies that depict violence as normal, but as the ultimate and damaging response to extreme situations. I think it is normalised references to violence and aggression that engender fear and hatred in our society. We should be preventing any reference to violence (physical or verbal) and directed disrespect for an individual or a group of persons in popular media - music, tv, films, magazines, online communities, graffiti. Anything with a message of unprovoked violence being good, beneficial, the only answer, necessary should be countered with images of the aftermath - the suffering of the beaten child, the raped teenager, the abused geriatric, the victimised family, the slandered community. I think we ignore subtle, unimportant references to violence and discrimination as 'just words' at our peril.

As the brave Sandhurst Comprehensive from Berkshire promotes in their annual trip to Auschwitz, 'Don't be a bystander - stand up to bigotry and bullying'. The Anne Frank Declaration should be promoted in every school, in every home.

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