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  #1    
Old July 24th, 2012 (09:19 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Point:
We should expect fans of an art form that is subjected to public criticism and vilification to leap to its defense. Some of these aficionados- whether the medium in question is cinema, fine art or pop music- make the case for the value of their favorite mode of expression by overstating its positive effects.

Hip hop has long been the focus of controversies surrounding violent music. Hip hop is closely associated with low-level criminality, as noted above. A number of highly successful hip hop artists have been attacked or killed as a result of feuds within the industry and links between managers, promoters and criminal gangs.

As the academic John McWhorter has pointed out in numerous publications, the positive political and social impact of rap music has been massively overstated, as a result of highly charged media coverage of hip hop-linked violence. As a result, attempts to address some of the hips hops most objectionable content- lyrics that are misogynist and blankly and uncritically violent- have been condemned as unjust assaults on the right to free expression. Attacks on negative content in hip hop have been made all the more emotive, because they appear to be an attempt to restrict the speech of members of vulnerable and marginalized communities.

Side proposition agrees with McWhorter that listening to music that contains violent themes will not, in the absence of other factors, cause individuals to behave in a violent way. However, the content of rap, and its strong links with the youngest inhabitants of marginalized, stigmatized urban areas mean that it damages the developmental opportunities of teenagers and young people, and harms others’ perceptions of the communities they live in.

Hip hop trades on its authenticity – the extent to which it faithfully portrays the lived experience of the inhabitants of deprived inner city areas. The greater the veracity of a hip hop track, the greater its popularity and cache among fans. Musicians have gained public recognition as a result of being directly involved in street crime and gang activities. 50 Cent, a high profile “gansta” artist owes his popularity, in part, to a shooting in 2000 that left him with 9 bullet wounds[3]. This supposed link to reality is the most dangerous aspect of contemporary hip hop culture. Unlike the simplistic make-believe of, say, action films, the “experiences” related by rappers are also their public personas and become the rationale for their success.

Rap, through materialist boasting and sexualized music videos tells vulnerable young men and women from isolated neighbourhoods that their problems can be solved by adopting similarly nihilistic personas. The poverty that affects many of the communities that hip hop artists identify with does more than separate individuals from economic opportunity. It also confines the inhabitants of these communities geographically, politically and culturally. It prevents young men and women from becoming aware of perspectives on the world and society that run contrary to the violence of main stream rap. With television dominated by the gangsta motif, marginalised youngsters are left with little in the way of dissenting voices to convince them that hip hop takes a subjective and commercialised approach to the lives and communities that rappers claim to represent.

In effect, controversial hip hop is capable of sponsoring violent behaviour, when it is marketed as an accurate portrayal of relationships, values and principles. Under these circumstances, adolescents, whose own identity is nascent and malleable can easily be misled into emulating the exploits and attitudes of rappers.

Side proposition advocates the control and classification of controversial forms of music, including but not limited to hip hop. Consistent with principles 1 and 10, classification of this type will follow similar schemes applied to movies and videogames. Assessments of the content of music will be conducted by a politically independent organisation; musicians and record companies will have the ability to appeal the decisions of this body. Crucially, the “ban” on music containing violent lyrics will take the form of a categorization scheme. Content will not be blocked from sale or censored. Instead, as with the sale of pornographic material in many liberal democratic states, music found to contain especially violent lyrics will be confined to closed off areas in shops, to which only adults (as defined in law) will be admitted. Its performance on television, radio and in cinemas will be banned. Live performances of restricted music will be obliged to enforce strict age monitoring policies. Online distributors of music will be compelled to comply with similar age restrictions and intentionally exposing minors to violent music will be punishable under child protection laws.

This approach has the advantage of limiting access to violent content only to consumers who are judged, in general, to be mature enough to understand that its “message” and the posturing of singers does not equate to permission to engage in deviant behavior.
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Quote originally posted by Counterpoint:
Crime and deviance existed in marginalized communities long before the creation of pop music or hip hop. Side proposition is attempting to claim that a particular genre of hip hop is harming efforts to improve living standards and social cohesion within these communities.

Many of the problems associated with poor socialization and a lack of social mobility in inner city areas can be linked to the closed, isolated nature of these communities – as the proposition comments correctly observe. However, these problems can be traced to a lack of positive engagement between these young people and wider society.

Violence may be discussed or depicted in popular culture for a number of reasons, but it is still comparatively rare- especially in mainstream music- to celebrate violence for violence’s sake. Violence is discussed in hip hop in a number of contexts. Frequently, as in British rapper Plan B’s single Ill Manors, or Cypress Hill’s How I Could Just Kill A Man, descriptions of violent behavior or scenarios serve to illustrate negative or criminal attitudes and behaviors. These forms of conduct are not portrayed in a way that is intended to glorify them, but to invite comment on the social conditions that produced them. As the opposition side will discuss in greater detail below, the increased openness of the mainstream media also means that impoverished young people can directly address mainstream audiences.

Proposition side contends that the impression of the world communicated to potentially marginalized adolescents by pop culture is dominated by the language and imagery of gangsta rap. Proposition side’s argument is that, in the absence of aggressive and negative messages, a more engaged and communitarian perspective on the world will flourish in schools and youth groups from Brixton and Tottenham to the Bronx and the banlieues. By controlling access to certain hip hop genres, young people made vulnerable and gullible by the desperation of poverty will supposedly start to see themselves as part of the social mainstream. Nothing could be further from the truth. Why? Because efforts at including and improving the social mobility of these young people are underwhelming and inadequate. Social services, youth leaders and educators are not competing to be heard above the din of hip hop – they are not being given the resources or support necessary to communicate effectively with young people.

The nurturing environment that proposition side fantasies about creating will not spring into being fully formed if hip hop is silenced and constrained. The existence of an apparently confrontational musical genre should not be used to excuse policy failures such as the disproportionate use of the Metropolitan Police’s stop and search powers to arbitrarily detain and question young black men.

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Old July 24th, 2012 (10:54 AM).
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I do not really believe music with violent content causes people to commit violent acts by itself. People that do these things are already susceptable to commit these things themselves in my mind and music really dosent cause this to happen. Music is music, it is up to the interpretation of the listener. I do not believe any song encourages violence against others, but rather reflects things that actually happen in society, it's no secret that crime happens everyday and there are violent people in the world.
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Old July 24th, 2012 (03:29 PM). Edited July 24th, 2012 by droomph.
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When "Kill Everybody" became a hit, did crime rates dramatically increase? No, because you would have heard about it in the news, and I haven't.

In the same sense, music itself should never be banned, no matter how violent. But you can ban preformances, if it directly hurts people. After all, music is music. Violence is violence. You listen to violent music if you are violent yourself, and vice versa. And if you're not violent, then you're just listening to yet another song.

And my final point: I am listening to the rapping part of Kyoto, another one about killing and beaten' dem homeboys down. Do I want to beat dem homeboys too? No.
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Old July 24th, 2012 (07:06 PM).
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This is probably the most retarded piece of propaganda I've ever heard. Censorship in itself is bad, but this takes it to a whole new level.
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Old July 25th, 2012 (08:31 AM).
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Violence without context is dangerous. I don't listen to much of anything that has violent themes so I can't say whether violently themed music has an assumed "this is just a song, just a story" aspect to it or not, but if it doesn't then I'd like to have something more to justify its existence. Violence does desensitize people and that becomes part of an overall problem. I don't believe violent music can "make" you violent, but it's a lost opportunity to help someone with violent tendencies every time they are exposed to violence. In other words, the more violence you put out there, the fewer non-violent messages reach those people who are violent.

I think it's sensible to have certain restrictions, but more sensible for people (a.k.a. musicians, producers) not to support violence in music, or at least to contextualize it instead of glorifying it.
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Old July 25th, 2012 (03:55 PM).
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If half the things that 'desensitize' people were as bad as people said, I would be a genocidal maniac by now but without sounding too big headed, I'd like to think I'm just your regular nice guy.

The original point massively overstates the necessity of rappers portraying themselves as violent as well. I'd roll off a name of 'non-violent' rappers but it's not even like they're the minority, it just depends on the rapper. I'd be more defensive about the repetition of certain racial slurs by people who seem to be less and less attached to the ethnic group who are 'allowed' to say it. I can see where they are coming from with the misogynistic part of it.

The way I see it, you wouldn't stick your five year old child in front of a screen and force him to listen to uncensored Lil' Wayne for hours on end so it isn't a problem in child development. I've maybe listened to a lot of rap since I was fourteen and I can't say it has affected me negatively as far as I know, not to say there have been positive effects either. Anyway, the censorship in place is there to protect kids and if they're old enough to get round it then they probably know what they're getting into anyway.
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Old August 13th, 2012 (07:10 AM).
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Interestingly enough, the Gunman at the Sihk temple in Wisconsin was a member of a violent white supremacist rock band that sang songs about killing minorities, etc.

I think there's a line to be drawn when it comes to violence in media. The nazi hate lyrics I would ban, but not the average hip hop song/lyrics.
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Old August 13th, 2012 (11:50 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Livewire:
Interestingly enough, the Gunman at the Sihk temple in Wisconsin was a member of a violent white supremacist rock band that sang songs about killing minorities, etc.

I think there's a line to be drawn when it comes to violence in media. The nazi hate lyrics I would ban, but not the average hip hop song/lyrics.
My first thoughts are to agree with this, but my second thoughts wonder where we would draw the distinction between what is acceptable and what is too much.

Still, not gonna say I'd be heart broken if people couldn't sing pro-nazi songs (aside from "Springtime for Hitler" but that's a parody) that were seriously pro-nazi.
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Old August 13th, 2012 (05:00 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Livewire:
Interestingly enough, the Gunman at the Sihk temple in Wisconsin was a member of a violent white supremacist rock band that sang songs about killing minorities, etc.
why is this at all interesting?
they sing about killing minorities because they are interested in killing minorities, not vice versa; a correlation between their lyrical interests and their interests is to be expected no?
I pretty much agree with the thoughts of user: controversial? about the op
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Old August 13th, 2012 (05:03 PM).
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Much like playing shooter video games or reading the Diary of Anne Frank (horrible example but it's 2am and I can't think of a book with graphic violence atm) won't turn you into killers, I don't think songs that contain violent content should be banned.

If there was solid evidence to there being a link between kids who listened to violent music growing up become psychopaths more so than those that listened to non-violent music, then yeah, maybe age restrictions should be added to albums like video games etc. But I don't think murderers have ever attributed their actions to Lil Wayne (idk, does he sing about violence? i dont listen to much rap/hiphop)
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Old August 14th, 2012 (05:21 PM).
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As much as I hate rap, hip-hop, pop, etc., no kind of music should be banished. It's called censorship, something all the democracies so hardly stand against. It's the listener who needs to think about what the music says and the contexts it was written on, and not just outright be hypnotized by it and start shooting people or worshipping Satan just because the song tells them to.
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Old August 18th, 2012 (05:24 PM). Edited August 18th, 2012 by CarcharOdin.
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Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
Much like playing shooter video games or reading the Diary of Anne Frank (horrible example but it's 2am and I can't think of a book with graphic violence atm) won't turn you into killers, I don't think songs that contain violent content should be banned.

If there was solid evidence to there being a link between kids who listened to violent music growing up become psychopaths more so than those that listened to non-violent music, then yeah, maybe age restrictions should be added to albums like video games etc. But I don't think murderers have ever attributed their actions to Lil Wayne (idk, does he sing about violence? i dont listen to much rap/hiphop)
Aren't there already age restrictions on albums? I remember during my teenage years that albums with a PA sticker on them were not to be sold to anyone under 17. Of course, I'm not entirely sure if it's still like this or if this applies to countries other than the United States.

That being said, I don't support censorship of lyrics, even Nazi lyrics. At all. It goes against my belief of how free speech should be and listening to violent content doesn't necessarily make one violent. An inclination for violence depends on so many more factors than just whatever media you're interested in.

I listen to black metal, but I'm not satanist nor do I go around setting churches on fire.
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Old August 18th, 2012 (05:28 PM). Edited August 18th, 2012 by Ice Car.
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I didn't even bother reading that huge wall of text. My answer is no. Violent media in general has, in my opinion, no effect on anyone. Don't blame the music, the games, the movies, the books, or anything but the person. It's not the books, music, movies, games, etc that's causing violence, blame it on crazy people. Oh my god, someone that listens to violent music just went on a violent rampage killing dozens of people! BLAME THE MUSIC! SUE THE CREATORS! CENSOR IT! No.

I don't mean to sound insensitive, but God, is it ****ing STUPID that people even believe any form of media has anything to do with people's actions.
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Old August 18th, 2012 (06:23 PM).
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They believe us minors can't listen to violence.... I listen to rap, and I LOVE Skrillex's "kill everybody" song... I am not violent, I am kind, I am thoughtful, I am creative.. See? No harm done here. I am sorry that I seem harsh.
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Old September 6th, 2012 (08:34 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Ice Car:
I didn't even bother reading that huge wall of text. My answer is no. Violent media in general has, in my opinion, no effect on anyone. Don't blame the music, the games, the movies, the books, or anything but the person. It's not the books, music, movies, games, etc that's causing violence, blame it on crazy people. Oh my god, someone that listens to violent music just went on a violent rampage killing dozens of people! BLAME THE MUSIC! SUE THE CREATORS! CENSOR IT! No.

I don't mean to sound insensitive, but God, is it ****ing STUPID that people even believe any form of media has anything to do with people's actions.
The Neo Nazi that shot up the Sikh Temple a few weeks ago led a white supremacist rock band that fueled the hateful tendencies they had, and helped inspire the attack, so....no. Media effects people.
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Old September 6th, 2012 (09:17 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Livewire:


The Neo Nazi that shot up the Sikh Temple a few weeks ago led a white supremacist rock band that fueled the hateful tendencies they had, and helped inspire the attack, so....no. Media effects people.
Sure, it affects insane people and extremists, or perhaps people that are open to suggestion. The average person without those views would be extremely unlikely to actually be affected by something like a song. The song tells you to kill someone, or encourages violence? A normal person wouldn't take that seriously.

Even if it mattered, censoring violent music would be stupid because the average person is scarcely ever affected, and cases where violent acts are committed by previously sane people affected by music is frankly far and few between.
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Old September 6th, 2012 (01:23 PM).
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I believe that its media that gives music with strong content a bad image. I listen to music with lots of blood, gore, dismembering, and strong language [Cannibal Corpse my favorite band] and I'm not out committing anything bad or illegal. Media makes it big deal. The only people that do the bad deeds are already mentally ill in the brain and use the music as an excuse.
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Old September 15th, 2012 (07:56 PM).
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I am also a metalhead, so I disagree with banning the music I love. Whether it be Slipknot, Cannibal Corpse, Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, Judas Priest, etc.
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