Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Uckfay Ouyay - America's Declining Morals

As a radio talk show host, I listen intently to many radio talk shows. The other day I was listening to talk show host Laura Ingraham and I tuned in at the point where she was talking about how America seems to be on a downward trend. Normally Ms. Ingraham and her other conservative colleagues spend most of their air time lambasting President Obama (that’s another blog post), but during this particular segment I could not help but to agree with her commentary. She was speaking in terms of America’s morality particularly in music, television/movies/video, etc. and how we seem to be more and more willing to push the envelope. I had made these same observations some time ago and predict that at some point in the not so distant future we will have full frontal and rear nudity on regular television during the day before long. I make this prediction because like Laura Ingraham, I too believe we have gone down a slippery slope. Take a few minutes to critically listen to the lyrics in too many of our songs. Words such as “bitch,” “ho (whore),” “damn,” “hell,” and of course the more vulgar ones such as the “S” and “F” words are appearing more and more on the radio and are no longer bleeped out. On television and in film, less and less clothes are being worn and just about every conversation has a sexual overtone or double entendre in it. Even children’s cartoons such as the ironically oxymoronic titled “Family Guy” and “King of the Hill” have implied and blatant nudity and sexual content. Over the years we have continued to move the line in the sand further and further to the point where it is almost erased. For some reason we as a society seems to be fascinated with vulgarity and perversion to the point where we have accepted it as the “norm.”

While walking along Ocean Avenue in Miami Beach, Florida, I noticed how every souvenir /gift shop  proudly and prominently displayed in its windows T-shirts that boldly read “I’m in Miami Bitch.” No shame in that game whatsoever. As you entered the shops there were shirts with even more vulgar language written on them. Again, it was the norm. We truly have moved to an “almost anything goes” society where boundaries have been obliterated. The fact that children are exposed to this negativity and vulgarity is not even taken into consideration and then we wonder why we are getting what we are getting.

The song Laura Ingraham was speaking about was a cleaned up version of a song titled “Fuck You” by Cee-Lo Green. When criticism finally did come about, apparently the decision was made to substitute the word “Fuck” with “Forget” thereby now titling the song “Forget You.” While I do not often agree with Ms. Ingraham, I wholeheartedly agree with her on her views concerning the lyrics of the song and where America as a society is at the moment and is headed. I share her views on that issue. For illustrative purposes, take a look at the unedited/ raw version of the song “Fuck You ….now Forget You” below:
Fuck You (Lyrics)


I see you driving 'round town
With the girl I love and I’m like,
Fuck you!
Oo, oo, ooo

I guess the change in my pocket
Wasn't enough I’m like,
Fuck you!
And fuck her too!

I said, if I was richer, I’d still be with ya
Ha, now ain't that some shit? (ain't that some shit?)
And although there's pain in my chest
I still wish you the best with a...
Fuck you!
Oo, oo, ooo

Yeah I’m sorry, I can't afford a Ferrari,
But that don't mean I can't get you there.
I guess he's an Xbox and I’m more Atari,
But the way you play your game ain't fair.

I picture the fool that falls in love with you
(oh shit she's a gold digger)
(just thought you should know nigga)
I've got some news for you
Yeah go run and tell your little boyfriend

Now I know, that I had to borrow,
Beg and steal and lie and cheat.
Trying to keep ya, trying to please ya.
'Cause being in love with you ass ain't cheap.

I picture the fool that falls in love with you
(oh shit she's a gold digger)
(just thought you should know nigga)
I've got some news for you
I really hate yo ass right now

Now baby, baby, baby, why d'you wanna wanna hurt me so bad?
(so bad, so bad, so bad)
I tried to tell my mamma but she told me
"this is one for your dad"
(your dad, your dad, your dad)
Uh! Whhhy? Uh! Whhhy? Uh!
Whhhy lady? Oh! I love you oh!
I still love you. Oooh!


After reading these lyrics and knowing that there are many more songs out there that are similar to this one, I think you get the point of this post. My usual Critical Thinker disclaimer includes the fact that I am not looking for agreement with me from my readers, however, after reading the lyrics above, you can make your own assessment in terms of the direction we as a society are headed. For some you will say “What’s the big deal?” For others you will be as horrified as I am. Either way, I invite you to critically think and in this particular case act when possible to help turn our society around. As always I invite your commentary in the comment section of The Critical Thinker.


Stephen L. Brayton said...

Please don't tell me you just started noticing this. I'm guilty of this thinking, also, though. Every year I'm part of the mass that tolerates just a little bit more, whether it's the scandals in government, subject matter on TV, minor crimes, or whatever. But this didn't just start, it's been going on for decades.
I remember in the seventies there was controversey over the violence on Starsky and Hutch. Then there was the minor furor over the little girl saying, "You suck." on some supposedly half way family show in the eighties. The Shield really brought profanity to TV.
Music is no different. The song lyrics you provided, except for the F word are tame compared to some that are out there. Remember that stupid rap group and their "As Dirty as we Wanna Be" album? Remember the bruhaha over gangsta rap and cop killing songs? I won't listen to the Eminem song about a man abusing his woman, tying her to the bed, and setting the house on fire. How long have Parental Advisory label been put on albums and videogames?
Every year it seems there's something just a little worse than the last thing and some may raise their voices, but then the cocaphony dies and society just lets it go on until the next time.
It starts at home with teaching your children and not tolerating certain things in your home. Of not falling into the trap of, "Well, it's out there, might as well just deal with it." I'm not saying we all need to turn into the Amish (and nothing against them), but the more crap I see, the more some of their ideals and way of living is desirable.

Julie H. said...

Very true it is becoming so easy for us to accept these vulgarities as the norm for our society and our own lives. Once upon a time we would have been disgusted by the kissing of two men or women and now it is as if it is a normal part for life, not a frown not a smirk. Even in our own lives we start off with the “simple” sin like listening to certain music which we know are inappropriate and we excuse it with “it’s just music nothing is meant by it”. A month or two later we begin to excuse another wrong until the sins escalate and eventually we become desensitized by all the wrongs around us and the wrongs that allow in our lives. As Christians the longer we take to speak up and live up the softer our voices will become once we do decide to speak up.

KH said...

It's amazing to me how hard it is to let my 7 year old son listen to the radio these days. I'm shocked at what doesn't get bleeped anymore on stations on my satellite radio.

Thankfully, there's the KidzBop version of a lot of that music, and my son still loves those.

I for one still hold on to the old-fashioned idea that kids need to be kids, and not exposed to adult concepts and language. I know that he'll start using this language before I want him to (he's already picked up "this sucks" from other kids at school), but for now, he's still being taught to be more respectful than that.

That's what's really missing - it's OK to accept this stuff for entertainment, as long as those who are consuming it understand when it's appropriate and when it's time to be more respectful of others around them. Parents don't seem to care any more if their kids show any respect to anyone. The kids don't even realize that there's anything wrong with it.

Until my son is old enough to start to understand when it's OK and when it's just disrepectful, I'm attempting to shield him from as much as I can. But that's been getting harder and harder.