Censorship and Music



Censoring Music from Our Children
“I will kill you, you don’t want to f*** with me, b**** I will kill you” (Eminem). Is this the type of music we want our children listening to? Unfortunately, these lyrics by popular music star Eminem are exactly what children today are being subjected to. Musicians write music and gear their lyrics toward a certain group of people. However, if heard by the wrong crowd it may be offensive to certain age groups, cultures, or races. Therefore, censoring the music is a necessary action that we must take to prevent corruption of the youth and our culture. By censoring music we are preventing children from hearing the sex, violence, and racism that is clearly being vocalized by many of the popular musicians today.
“Sexual brutality has become the common currency of America’s youth culture” (Gore 236). Many songwriters today promote distasteful sex throughout their lyrics. Musicians such as Sisqo repeat, “Let me see that thong,” and “I’ll kiss the lips under your navel.” Believe it or not, he is very popular among young children, and the words to his songs can clearly be understood. I believe that children are not stupid, and are able to understand the content of this material. Consequently, they are being taught this senseless information. Sex is a very unfamiliar topic to most youngsters. Therefore it should be taught to them by their parents, and not given misconceptions through vulgar song lyrics. Also, “several rock groups now simulate sexual torture and murder during

live performances” (Gore 236). In July, Eminem held a concert in which he brought an inflatable doll, which represented his wife, onto the set. After being told several times that use of the toy was not allowed he continued to defy the law by presenting it on stage. (Bozza). Young children should not be permitted to view and listen to this explicit material, because it is corrupting their minds.
It is obvious that sex is widely referred to in today’s music. However, so is violence. In Dayton, Ohio, “An 11-year-old boy had shot and killed his 3-year-old sister and wounded his 5-year-old sister. He said he was imitating Tupac Shakur” (Parents’ Advocates). Some of Tupac’s lyrics include, “Blast people first. Ask questions Last.” Has anyone ever stopped to think that maybe these lyrics may subliminally put messages in children’s minds? Believe it or not, they enjoy listening to this type of music. Nick Bradeen, a fourteen year old, who is an avid fan of rap and industrial metal (Parents’ Advocates), believes that, “When you hear the songs, you can’t understand most of the words” (Parents’ Advocates). I believe that when we hear a song that interests us, we listen to it repetitively until we know the words. By listening to these lyrics, children may try to reproduce the actions or emulate the words that are heard in the songs. Censoring this indecency is the only way to stop the minds of children from becoming perverted.
Not only are sex and violence areas that need to be monitored, but the racism in lyrics should also be checked. The word nigger is utilized in so many songs it is unbelievable. For instance, Tupac sings, “Cops give a damn about a Negro. Pull the
trigger, kill a nigger he’s a hero.” DMX vocalizes, “Nigger runnin’ his mouth I’m gonna blow his mind out.” For centuries racism has been an issue that everyone has tried to conquer. If we are teaching it to children, they are going to grow up with premeditated
thoughts of racist acts before they know that their actions are wrong. Unfortunately, racism is not only taught by rap artists, but sung about in various plays as well. For example, “South Pacific,” a musical for people of all ages, contains a song called “You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught” by Oscar Hammerstein. The lyrics to this song include,
You’ve got to be taught to be afraid,
Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
And people whose skin is a different shade.
You’ve got to be carefully taught.
You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late
Before you’re six or seven or eight,
To hate all the people your relatives hate.
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

. By hearing these lyrics in a play, we are definitely