I had planned for my first post of December to be light and fluffy and super fun. I even created my very own #reindeerBoob (which you can see a sneak peak of on my Patreon) and was going to babble about my thoughts on this internet sensation, however, this post is much more important than my little bit of fun. For you see, this morning I woke up to the news that various radio stations are banning a song (Baby It’s Cold Outside), and calling it a step forward in the fight for the #metoo movement. And quite frankly, that is bullshit.
In 1990, 2 Live Crew was arrested after performing a banned song with very sexually graphic and violent lyrics. This began a trial that was ultimately going to determine the fate of an artists freedom of speech. Spoiler alert, musicians won, and freedom of expression and speech were protected. And here we sit, 28 years later, banning music, yet again to protect our little sensitivities. Have we really learned nothing? Why do we have to keep making the same mistakes over and over again to only end up in the same place? This is the definition of insanity. It’s time to wake up and stop banning things just because you don’t like them. Censorship never has the intended effect, EVER!
I absolutely think the #MeToo movement is valuable and woke a lot of people up to a major problem in our society. It made the word consent meaningful. It began conversations with peers and parents alike about what we can do in our social circles, and how we can better raise the next generation. Conversations and education are the most precious things we have at the moment to move forward as a society with awareness and compassion alike. I fully support using the hashtag #MeToo to spread awareness of facts. What I have an intense problem with, is when groups of people rally together to start banning music, books, media, etc in the name of social change, and in this case a hashtag. For the past couple of years, people have been rallying to ban Baby It’s Cold Outside. And when that didn’t work, they even tried to change the lyrics to a more socially aware little ditty. And now they are just outright pulling it from public airwaves, siting a movement that quite frankly has nothing to do with the song.
And before you ask me, have I even heard the lyrics, yes, yes I have. And as I write this, I have the original on in the background with a man singing it to keep his lady friend from going home, and the very funny flip of a woman singing it to keep her man from leaving. It was written to be sung, with the irony of how a man and women singing the same lyrics would be perceived, in a comedic setting. Light hearted fun, fit for the times, and with such a beautiful melody, it has been recorded countless times over the years with people eager to give their try as this catchy duet. Now if you read the lyrics, with zero context and get to the line where the singer says “no” it is firm and playfully ignored. And I would be a fool to say that this is not a huge problem in our current society. It absolutely is, no, should always be no. But I ask you this, what can possibly be gained by banning this song and just removing it from our musical archives? If you guessed nothing, you would be absolutely right. And what can be gained from having a conversation about why that part of the song is so offensive and off putting, oh that’s right, EVERYTHING!
We have an opportunity here to educate and change the perspective of people going forward. We do this by having dialogue and debate. We talk about what offends us and we work to improve things. We do not just sweep things under the rug and hope they will go away, because we all know that doesn’t work. So please, let’s not go back in time, banning music that doesn’t suit out delicate constitutions. Instead, choose to listen or turn it off. Talk about what we can do to make more socially aware changes in your own life. And finally, if you have ever thought about blaming a song for you being socially inept and ignoring the word no in your own life, please, sort that shit out, because you are the problem, not the song.
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