When we look at the lyrics of Hip-Hop songs, we mostly can see that rappers were telling stories that they were faced with such as street crime, alienation, rage, drug trade, prison life or violence which was a way of complaint about their lifestyle or how they were threatened as well. We have to accept that rap artists were influenced, and they were the products of the life that they grew up in. However, it was a huge problem for new generation because the violence that was told in lyrics by rappers were ridiculed and seen as bad impact on teen listeners. Seeing rap artists as role models caused an imitation life styles and similar characteristics on teens as well. Hunt who did the documentary had a trip to Spring Bling which is a rap festival in Florida. (Hunt)His point was to analyze teen rappers and listeners and, see young men and women to talk about how manhood is displayed in hip-hop culture. After he let some young rappers to sing, he realized that their lyrics were consist of gunplay, killing other man, being tough and invulnerable, feminizing other men, and putting fear into another man’s heart. Those violent-portraying lyrics and horrible real-life examples that were reflected in songs at the beginning of Hip-hop culture caused young African-American community negatively.
Hip-hop was created in the ghettos who are poor African Americans, Jamaicans and West Indians. Instead of breaking stereotypes by the time, new generations adopted the hip-hop culture that they saw from older generations. The gun became the outlet for the aggression and the rage that young black and brown men feel. Masculinity was an issue for them because there was a whole lineage of black men wanting to deny their own frailty which forced them to be violent, misogynist, and a different person. In an interview with Fat Joe who was the rapper in Bronx, Hunk asked ‘why is it so important to be hard in hip-hop? And he complained that everybody transformed to different person when they get the microphone in night clubs (Hunt). Also, he added that people hate each other instead of dancing and smiling each other when they were influenced by being hard all the time. In another interview with Mos Def and Talib Kweli, he was willing to learn why rappers projected an image of toughness and invulnerability in hip-hop. Def pointed out that every male want respect and he claimed toughness and invulnerability as a part of man’s life. Kweli added that hip-hop was a very ego-driven thing and it encouraged people to assert themselves (Hunt). These arguments show that hip-hop culture created a forced environment which occurred masculinity, violence, misogynistic, and hatred among people.
People are undoubtedly influenced by rappers. Teaching young people that real man is tough, violent, control women, cannot show weaknesses under any circumstances hurts teens’ personality traits and their potential as well. Rose touches upon the rehabilitation and community projects to fight against violence for a positive resolution. By, she argued that following policies in rehabilitation and community projects must be a solution to stop violence in these neighborhoods. (Rose pg 59-60)
The hip-hop depicts African-Americans as poor, violent, drug dealer, and thugs which demonstrates the hip-hop music as a cultural violence and create a negative stereotype of African American community because hip-hop music contained all negative forms that influence young generation badly. However, to understand the hip-hop culture , it is necessary to analyze the systematic political and economic oppression that they were faced with which was accepted as a main problem of violence in hip-hop because it is a resistance to the system of subjugation.