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Let the pile-on begin

We’re only about two months into 2007, but already there’s been a PBS documentary as well as a CNN special about how hip-hop (rather than, say, steroids or the Arab community) is the worst thing that ever happened to this country.

If you notice, this is happening right at a time when hip-hop is reaching an epic commerical nadir. Just how bad is it? According to an AP story’s that’s been making the rounds today, rap album sales were down 21 percent from 2005 to 2006.

Jesus H. Tapdancing Christ!

Furthermore, 2006 marked the first time in 12 years that top ten best-selling albums of the year did not include a rap album. While album sales are down across the board due to motherfuckers stealing, hip-hop is doing especially bad.

Granted, part of it has to do with the fact that the rap albums last year weren’t very good, but many are suggesting that this may be a sign of an increasing backlash against hip-hop. After all, how many great rap albums were there in the late ’90s, when rap was at its commercial peak?

A recent study by the Black Youth Project showed a majority of youth think rap has too many violent images; and in a poll of black Americans by The Associated Press and AOL-Black Voices last year, 50 percent of respondents said hip-hop was a negative force in American society.

Here’s the thing though: it’s not like hip-hop just became violent or ignorant last year. Some would argue that it’s been like that all along, but I don’t know that it was especially worse last year than it was, say, five or ten years ago.

If you notice, a lot of these same d-bags coming out of the proverbial woodwork claiming rap album sales are down because it’s too violent or it degrades women (check the god-awful AP story, “Hip-hop faces increasing backlash”) are the same d-bags who are always picking on hip-hop.

Think about it: it’s long been accepted as a fact that the vast majority of rap albums are purchased by white men. What kind of cracka-ass cracka do you know who would stop buying rap music because they thought it was too degrading of black women?

As a black man with avowed cracka-ass cracka tendencies, I can tell you for a fact that the more rap music is degrading to black women, the more I’m tempted to reach for my wallet. The reason I’m not buying nearly as many rap albums as I used to is because I just plain don’t like it anymore.

Record labels have decided to champion southern rap at the expense of all other types of rap music, but the truth of the matter is that southern rap bares about as much relation musically to the kind of hip-hop most of us were raised on as the Backstreet Boys do to Pavement, i.e. not very much.

So is it true that there’s an increasing backlash against hip-hop? Probably, but not for the reasons the liberal Jew-run media would have you believe.

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