MEN CAN STOP RAPE
Posted by antiintellect
There can be a tendency in Feminist Movement to only make note of the problematic things in popular culture, and our general society. I want to use this post to spotlight a Black male entertainer for inserting a positive lyric into one of his songs.
Lil Jon isn’t a feminist by a long shot. He has a long list of offenses when it comes to songs regarding women, their bodies, and the agency they use when it comes to their bodies. But, I will give Lil Jon credit for getting it right in one song. According to most reports, 1 in 3 women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime, so we need all we can get in terms of anti-rape messages in popular culture, particularly in Hip Hop music.
I’ve listened to “Lovers and Friends” by Lil Jon Ft. Usher and Ludacris many times, but I didn’t really key in on the progressive lyrics of Lil Jon, until recently. I knew the lyrics always resonated with me for some reason, but I wasn’t able to articulate why I thought the lyrics were so noteworthy.
During his verse on the song, Lil Jon raps,
“Are you sure you wanna go this route? (shorty’),
Let a nigga know before I pull it out (shorty’),
I would never ever cross the line (shorty’),
Shorta’let me hear you tell me one mo’ time…one mo’ time…”
Most people may not see these lyrics as anything to write about, but in a culture that has a very hard time dealing with sexual activity and consent I find the lyrics to be very refreshing. Lil Jon is rapping about consent with his sexual partner. Foregrounding consent when it comes to sexual activity is one of the primary ways that we reject a rape culture that insists that sex between two people need not be based on consent. “Are you sure you wanna go this route?” How powerful is that? Asking one’s sexual partner if they are ready to, and willing to, agree to sex.
Lil Jon wants to know his partners stance before he pulls out his penis. He then says that he would never ever cross the line, referring to what I assume is rape. As we know, rape is definitely crossing the line, foregoing a concern with consent among parties.
It may not be much, but I find Lil Jon’s lyrics to be very refreshing, and I think they show how men can stop rape. Does this mean that Lil Jon isn’t a problematic rapper with other songs and lyrics deserving of our critique? No, but I do think he deserves credit for the above lyrics.
If “Men Can Stop Rape” needs a musical anthem, those lyrics will surely get the message across.
Jon’s verse begins at 2:45.