Good girls gotta get down with the gangstas

I’m gonna get back to international hip-hop (Canada I see you!), but I’ve got a few other things on my mind today.

Yeah, so an acquaintance of mine recently laid down an interesting argument about pimp mythology. “Women love that shit,” the dude claimed. Which is a ridiculous thing to say, really. But he went on. He argued that whenever a rapper pulls the pimp card, his record sales go through the roof (think 50’s “P.I.M.P.” and Jay’s “Big Pimpin”). Female consumers eat that shit up, he said, and how bizarre is that given the fact that a real pimp would beat your ass in a heartbeat? I don’t know how you would prove his theory with sales stats, but I do think there’s a kernel of truth to it.

It got me thinking. The Baby Boomer feminists are probably gonna come after me with sticks for this (Valerie Smith, a.k.a. ‘the Canadian Tipper Gore’: bring it on)—but I’m gonna say it anyway cause it’s true. Sex sells, and we’re kidding ourselves if we think only men are buying in.

More to the point, there’s obviously something about the pimp/hustler/gangster image that a lot of females go crazy for. (Think Alicia Keys’ “If I Ain’t Got You” video with Meth.) The fact of the matter is that desire doesn’t always align with rational thought. Joan Morgan talked about that in her book about women and hip-hop culture back in the late 90s. For a lot of chicks out there (trust me, girls talk), there’s something irresistible about the smooth swagger and bold game of the thug image.

I say “image” cause obviously when it comes to street dudes, fantasy and reality are two different things. Nobody wants to deal with a real pimp. You would get your ass kicked cold and put out on the track to get violated by a bunch of nasty johns. Nobody wants to mess with a real hustler or gangster either. Who wants to get the call at 3 a.m. that your man is locked up, or badly beaten, or shot? Who wants to worry that his rivals are coming after you? Or, on a less dramatic tip, who wants to see someone they love suffer jangled nerves, mad regrets, and general day-to-day despair? You would never want that for your man. Just like no man would ever want that for himself. It’s something people end up stuck in when they have no resources and no options and no hope. And there’s nothing hot about that. It’s just plain old heartbreaking.

So where does that leave females that have a soft spot for the thugs? No idea.

I don’t have any answers to any of this. I’m just trying to tell it like it is. And I’m suggesting that when people go after rappers for frontin’ like gangsters, or for profiling in booty clap videos (folks are dogging Bubba Sparxxx as we speak), that us females should search our own hearts too. And maybe start by admitting that while we find a lot of that shit ignorant and infuriating, we find some of it sexy too. At least some of us, some of the time.

Hate it or love it, that’s the schizophrenia of the hip-hop generation.

  • Tipper Gore’s Inner Sex Pot

    Well I guess someone had to say it.
    I invite (non-lesbian) feminists to honestly claim they have never crushed on a Bad Boy. Though I’m not sure if it’s just the “pimp” image ladies find sexy, I can tell you men with canes dressed in colorful fur coats with goblets of “crunk juice” have never got me hot (especially Snoop’s bad fake teeth in that 50 video, EW!)… Props Tara, u brave

  • bluerid

    i didnt read any of it just have a message for marshall.

    GOD DAMN IT MARSHALL IM SICK AND TIRED OF HEARING YOUR SHIT ON THE RADIO AND SEEYING YOUR SHIT ON TELEVISION.IVE HAD ENOUGH OF IT.IF YOU WANT TO SEE ME FACE TO FACE WHEN I HAVE MY NEW LIVINGSPACE(SOON)THATS FINE BUT REMEMBER IM IN HOLLAND IN MY COUNTRY THAT MEANS IF YOU COME IN YOU HAVE TO FOLLOW MY RULES CUZ U BE INVADING MY TERRITORY THEN.FOR ALL CARE U TROW ALL UR MONEY AWAY OR GIVE IT TO SOME CHARITY AND WE START ALL OVER AGAIN.IM JUST FED UP WITH YOUR SHIT.

  • http://www.prohiphop.com Clyde Smith

    It’s interesting that this is perceived as a controversial topic, though I believe you when you say you’ll get responses along those lines. But good girls and women loving bad boys and men is a pretty old tale.

    I guess pimp love is a weird variation on that theme.

    I’ll leave it to Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy”:
    Every woman adores a Fascist,
    The boot in the face, the brute
    Brute heart of a brute like you.

    Peace

  • http://www.futilityrecords.com dj neoteric

    is bluerid for real? haha

    this whole “pimpin” and “gangsta” thing isnt too literal in my mind, its more a reflection of confidence, which is a major selling point for sex to women. Its all pretty primal, alpha male type stuff, the world is a meat market no matter how sophisticated we all try to act

    (i know thats a huge generalization)

  • The Cipher

    well i think the whole good girls loving bad boys is an old tale as well… but when you think bout it, were all attracted to something bad and morally wrong (S&M for example) it’s like a human nature we dont wonna accept yet invite it everytime it comes… as a guy i never found myself chasing the whole pimp/gangster/thug/hustler profile (personally i like to stay in my B-boy stance rocking old school adidas while kicking it on the dance floor), but hey when i see one of those homies coming through the area “g’d up”, sometime i find myself saying wow that looks nice, not my style but still nice… i kinda drifted off a bit, but what im trying to say is, were attracted to what most will say is wrong(damn i love porno!!!) and this is a known fact for anything, as for the feminist, i known ima be steppin on some toes with this, but you make me laugh, cause the way they speak bout women who roll with pimps and do the whole video vixen scene, is as if those women dont have minds of there own which is completely false(you cant empower women and bring them down at the same time, we like to call that an oxy-moron)…

  • http://gritamujer.blogspot.com mujerdelrio

    Maybe you should clarify. There is a Certain type of “chick” that is attracted to a thug/pimp. And anyone who’s taken a PSY 100 class knows why certain “chicks” are attracted to deliquents. Dysfuntional parenting, low self esteem, sexual abuse, you name it –many women that are attracted to grimey men are attracted in part because they believe they either don’t deserve or can’t find a better man. Or maybe their childhood was so fucked up that they don’t know what a “good man” looks like.

  • http://www.slamjamz.com Triniti

    So therefore shall we all become thugs and pimps?
    So what is the hope for non pimps or thugs?

  • http://www.xxlmag.com tim

    ima real gangsta a crip and i got a few girls at the same time because i aint always with them all at once one thing i can say about girls who like thugs is that they got alotta mouth and i be on on and off relationships all the time and sometimes i hit em because they need to know that they are mine they dont respect me sometimes because i give them all time

  • Bohwe

    Women are attracted to the Alpha male. Like for me, Gangster Movies, always make the bad guy the sexiest. Like Al Pacino in Godfather 1, was sexy. I don’t think it’s the lifestyle, but the personality, like the confidence level, that sexy. How a man can be dangerous and masculine. But, in reality who wants a man that would beat you and kill someone not wrinking, and go to bed like everything is fine. I think we glorify this behavior because we aren’t face with the reality of the “thug life”. What is so glamorous about being beaten , slapped around? I’d rather have a man that hasn’t been in prison having sex with men, then trying to come out, and still claim he’s a man. Please, I’ll stick to the law abiding nerdy men with a 9 to 5 , church going, college educated man, any days. Ain’t nutin sexy about a thug.

  • inluvwitathug

    women like thugs because they are the alpha male.tv perpetuates the need to love thugs and be in a relationship with them.My man is a thug,a hustla,a gangsta …all that.I am a pretty,Christian,college gurl but there is somethin sooooooooo sexi about a man that shows u he’s a boss…more exciting!!!

  • Mrs.Jones

    Yea good gurlz like us need to be down with tha G’s

  • http://www.facebook.com bama

    THUG’S ARE SO SEXY I HATE MEN THAT WERE SUIT’S ALL THE TIME MOST OF THEM LOOK LIKE THEY JUST STEP OUT OF A CASKET DEAD AS HELL!

  • temps

    Truth my boy just got out of the joint for the second time in five yrs, he’s 30.

    I am thirty just got my degree, my job and all of the ones I had thru school never had me in a suit, our personas are similar but we are own men. Most women I have encountered deny or cant accept that I graduated NYU or they cant deal with I sound so street until we get intellectual and that where women are going to have to decide what are they willing to accept.

    Some tell me about their thug ex’s or current BF is a gangster my answer…I dont care, I wouldnt make a loose chick my shorty and then cry about the contradictions.

    Back in the 90′s I met shorties in BMCC (comm college in Manhattan) whose BF’s beat them up when she showed she was serious about her education, my feeling…was so what.

    If a thug is what you want then take EVERYTHING he offers.

    as for my persona is straight East New York but I was always the smartest dude in the class and in the streets, nothing about mine came off square.

    Problem is women see us in simple terms, you really think just cuz I read I wouldnt fcuk the shit out of you, you are a REALLY square chick.

    If some of you at the ripe old age of 25 think I am square cuz I am in school or where a suit (that cost more than timbs and a pair of evisu’s)I am not intrested in proving you wrong, you’ll have to live with how will I grow old with this guy or this kind of guy?

    Show me a thug in his 60′s who owns property is retired and can go anywhere in the world or at least the US. And maybe I’ll be immpressed.

    Women being attracted to thugs is a womens issuse and I just dont want to hear the ladies whine about it, what you dont like you quit.

    • P Cali

      This brothas right. But the problem is, is that black family isn’t holding together. When our eligible and educated sistas want to run after a thug or pimp, and actually believe they can change him, they are foolish.

      Even if you had an astronaut, a cop, a professor, and NBA player… do you think you can change them. Stop it sistas, you are wasting your time and killing us off. Make them brothas chase after you when they are done being petty little boys with their murderous hatred of other black men.

      Sistas, thugs are dangerous, hey even 50 got shot nine times and Tupac is dead.

  • http://myspace.com/aggro hoodo

    u crap man

  • Miguel

    Your stupid. lol don’t forget he’ll beat you up when his mad.

  • thugLife

    aey yo bitch…i be a thug..come ova here and suck on ma big black meat bitch! on your neez ho! You know I dont love deez hos. And let my niggaz run a train on yo ass ho! You know how we do. It aint no fun if the homies cant have none…and yo white azz lookin good too…dayum!

  • Champion

    “Problem is women see us in simple terms, you really think just cuz I read I wouldnt fcuk the shit out of you, you are a REALLY square chick.”

    Brilliant post Temps. I too am a 30 year old College graduate that wears a suit to work. In Baltimore city where I live, seeing a young black man wearing a suit to work is as rare as a black woman who says that she wants a good man that actually really does want a good man. Between the ages of 15 and 17, most of my peers starting selling drugs and when I think about the real reason why most of them did it, it was for 1) the respect of their peers and 2) attention from girls. I’m tired of these gangsta/thug lovin’ women. There’s no such thing as a “good” girl that loves “bad” guys, that sh*t is inherently illogical. I’ve known many college educated women who wouldn’t give a guy the time of day unless he was out on the corner doing dirt and they’re just as big an as*hole as he is no matter how many times she goes to church.

    • P Cali

      Definitely agree brotha. The shit is stupid and people wonder why brothas don’t chase sistas sometimes.

      I went to college. Should have done the opposite? Like you said, purely ‘illogical’. This can’t just be a well women think differently thing. It must be that some sistas can’t accept brothas intelligence, stability… Ah fuck it!!

      I say let them go chase the Game, 50, who the fuck ever! When they are 45 with kids who can’t recognize their own fathers, hopefully they would’ve learned something.

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