Center Stage 10/3/13: Hip-Hop Parental Guidance

 
Article written by: Nate Sherman

We are in a day and age where the Hip-Hop culture and lifestyle is being glorified in many ways due to the genre’s popularity. There is no denying that Hip-Hop is a reflection of many different cultures in our community but more often than not, Hip-Hop’s glorification of violence, drugs, and the lavish lifestyle is clearly a mixed message and in many ways a fabrication of reality, specifically in modern day Hip-Hop.

This fabrication of reality in Hip-Hop culture is perceived by many to be the blame of the corruption and illiteracy of today’s young minds. In today’s Center Stage blog, I pose to you the question: Is modern day Hip-Hop truly partially responsible for many of the corrupted minds and behaviors among our youth or should the responsibility lay solely on the heads of the parents?

I want to make it perfectly clear that Hip-Hop IS NOT responsible for how our youth is being brought up but it does have a profound influence on them. I have expressed in past blogs how Hip-Hop today is not as educational or as powerful from a message standpoint as it once was. You can listen to many songs that make it on to mainstream radio or music videos that get millions of hits on Youtube and the content, in my opinion, has nothing of importance to offer to the public other than to tell them, ‘Hey, I’m a rapper and because I’m a rapper, I make lots of money that I throw away mindlessly on things that are as useless and meaningless as this song.’  Then there are those songs that condone violence and drug use, which no doubt influences a lot of children as you can look anywhere on the internet and see many young people bulling, fighting, and even imitating the use of drugs.

I as a Hip-Hop fan don’t understand the popularity of many of today’s Hip-Hop artist among young children, but you can see how they are being influenced through their imitation of what they  perceive as the reality of a Hip-Hop superstar whether it is by dressing provocatively, being disrespectful and degrading their peers, or taking pictures that perceive themselves as a vile-nature human-being.

It’s a shame that most young children can recite their favorite Hip-Hop lyrics, but can’t seem to pass the 4th grade. Although modern day Hip-Hop has many of these negative themes that are potentially a bad influence on today’s youth, the idea that Hip-Hop culture is solely responsible for the corruption of some of today’s youth is ludicrous.

Parents, if your kid is cursing up a storm or is hanging around the wrong crowd doing things they KNOW they should not be doing, you have NO RIGHT to place the blame solely on Hip-Hop culture or anything else for that matter. Here’s a reality check: Putting your kids in front of the TV or leaving them alone to do what they please is not raising them. It’s called BAD PARENTING!

I honestly believe that there are many parents out there with a problem child who feel that they aren’t responsible for their child’s upbringing and that is just a scary thought in itself. Sure kids are going to imitate Hip-Hop culture because the culture has a cool connotation to it, but Hip-Hop artists are not responsible for your kid’s actions or how they turn out for that matter.

Children are a product of not only their parents, but their environment. If a child is violent, acting up in school, and overall exhibiting bad behavior, then the blame should fall squarely on the parents as they are the guiding force in their child’s life.

Some children are more feeble-minded than others and they can be negatively effected not just by the fabricated Hip-Hop culture but other negative forces beyond their control including an unsafe living environment and even an unfit parent.

Yes, we can hold modern day Hip-Hop responsible for the glorification of a lifestyle that many of us don’t want imitated by today’s youth. We can even hold Hip-Hop responsible for producing lame artists who unintentionally dumb down the minds of our youth with their nonsensical raunchy lyrics, but at the end of the day, it is up to the parents and our society as a whole to set the standard and be that guiding force in the lives of our youth to counteract whatever negativity threatens the sanctity of their upbringing.

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Posted in Center Stage

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