Steve Harvey Asks Hip-Hop to Stop Disrespecting Women
Hip-hop fans have a seen a number of questions brought up about the beloved genre over the past several weeks, including, “is hip-hop ready for a gay artist?” “is ‘ni–a’ now a no-no?” and “should we stop calling women (bad) b—-es?” Well, Frank Ocean may have answered the first question, but the jury is still out on the two latter ponderings. And while rappers like Lupe Fiasco and Kanye West have both recently questioned the impact of sexism, misogyny and the B-word in hip-hop, iconic comedian Steve Harvey recently gave his opinion on the matter and called on hip-hop to stop disrespecting women.
In an interview with MTV News, Harvey praised hip-hop for allowing regular Joes (and Jills) to make their way out of poverty and into the Hollywood dream of riches and fame.
“Hip-hop is a beautiful thing,” he said. “I think that the music genre itself has create more millionaires than any other music genre before it, especially in our community.”
However, piggy-backing on the old Spiderman comic sentiment that “with great power, comes great responsibility,” Harvey argued that hip-hop artists must become aware that their lyrics have influence over the masses, especially the nation’s youth.
“I think that we as the African American men in hip-hop, we have a greater responsibly because we have the ears of so many millions of our young people,” he said. “And they listenin’.”
Though Harvey admits that he indulges in expletive-filled jokes in his comedy, he takes aim at misogyny in hip-hop and the black community and criticizes them for being the only cultures that allow for the regular degradation of their women.
“We got to stop the disrespect of our women in our music,” Harvey said. “We the only ones that do it. Japanese people don’t do it. Rock ‘n’ rollers don’t do it. Jewish people don’t do it. You know, Latino men don’t do it. Cubans don’t do it they music. Mexicans don’t do it in they music. I ain’t ever heard no Swedish group do it. Why we so hateful towards ourself,[sic] towards our sisters?”
Harvey finished his argument by challenging rappers to consider their own mothers, sisters and daughters when they write their rhymes and think about the impact their lyrics could have on these women.
While we beg to differ about the argument that misogyny is exclusive to only hip-hop and black culture, it’s clearly a major issue in those communities. And Harvey isn’t the only one challenging misogyny in hip-hop, check out some other males in rap that are challenging the degradation of women. –nicholas robinson