May 30, 2015

Rapper Action Bronson's free NXNE concert cancelled: Was he singled out because he's white?

Marissa SemkiwRebel Commentator
 

My musical tastes are rarely described as “hip” or “cool”. For me, an ideal evening in involves talking with my 93-year-old grandmother on the phone, and listening to Conway Twitty. 

But my friends tell me Action Bronson is one to watch, not just because he is an interesting artist, but also because his lyrics often challenge the dominant cultural and political consensus.

Action Bronson is a few shades removed from a “conscious rapper,” which is to say, his lyrics are intended to shock listeners, and often subvert what he really says.

Not that that matters to the perpetually offended identity politics crowd.

Take Erica Shiner, a Toronto woman, who started a petition to have Action Bronson kicked off the bill at North by Northeast (NXNE), an annual music festival in Toronto. The Directors of NXNE have partially conceded to her demand. On Friday, they announced that Bronson was banned from performing at Yonge-Dundas Square, the main stage for NXNE, where he was originally slated to perform.

Why the shutdown?

Well, Shiner’s call to censor Bronson was primarily based on lyrics from his song “Consensual Rape”, which mentions giving a girl drugs and having rough sex with her. 

To be sure, his lyrics are crass. But he’s hardly the first belligerent rap artist to ever perform in Toronto.

As music critic Gary Suarez put it: “Man, if you’re upset about Action Bronson lyrics wait until you hear about rap music." 

Incidentally, unlike many rap artists whose sole message is the objectification of women, Action Bronson isn’t one-dimensional. He’s a chef who hangs around household names like Mario Batali and raps about razor clams and bucatini. When it comes to offensive rap artists, Bronson is very middle of the pack.

Where were these anti-misogynist crusaders at every other hip-hop concert in Toronto?  Why did they single out Bronson?  Could it be, perhaps, because he’s a white man?  Political correctness is easily shot at white men over minorities.  This is a truth few are willing to publicize.

Regardless, in western liberal democracies, we’re allowed to insult people’s sensibilities. Or at least we’re supposed to be allowed to do so. That’s free speech.

Shiner and co. would have you believe that if you’re not offended, you’re not paying attention. They live in a world of necessary offense. Offense, offense, offense! It must be exhausting.

Shiner is offended by Bronson’s lyrics, that’s fine. But why doesn’t she protest by simply not showing up to his concerts? Or writing an article? To be sure, I don’t condone Bronson’s lyrics, but it offends me that a small group of arrogant faux-intellectuals have deemed him unworthy of his free speech rights. Social dialogue must be wide ranging. Bronson should be allowed to spark a debate. Instead, Shiner has muzzled him and called it a social victory. Nothing could be further from the truth.



READ Shakedown: How Our Government is Undermining Democracy in the Name of Human Rights --
Ezra Levant’s book about the Canadian Human Rights Commissions, censorship and the Mohammed cartoons was voted "the best political book of the last 25 years."

JOIN TheRebel.media for more fearless news and commentary you won’t find anywhere else.


Comments
You must be logged in to comment. Click here to log in.
commented 2015-08-01 11:02:27 -0400
We see women objectified and abused in TV series and in the movies all the time. So why can’t it be presented on the music stage too. It would seem that it is entertaining for many audiences …. What’s the difference? Not that I condone it … but how do they decide where to draw the line. I know most women are okay with the enslavement of women in the middle east, but that isn’t part of the world of entertainment now, is it? Reality is always conveniently avoided in the wake of the pursuit of fantasy and vilification of white men …. that is the way of the left.
NOTE: I apply the word music to the rap stage in a generic sense … rap is NOT music.
commented 2015-08-01 10:56:30 -0400
“But why doesn’t she protest by simply not showing up to his concerts? Or writing an article? "

Well, I can explain. When a person of the left doesn’t like something, they don’t want anyone to indulge whatsoever, so banning is the answer. When a person of the right doesn’t like something, he simply doesn’t bother with it.

Now we already knew that didn’t we?
commented 2015-06-18 08:37:07 -0400
I’m about as far removed from a Lefty as one can get, but guess what? I signed that petition. I watched the offending video. I couldn’t tell a lot of the lyrics, but in the video, he kills his girlfriend, wraps her in a carpet, then, just before dumping the body stabs her repeatedly whilst calling her a bitch over and over. It was pretty graphic. It was disturbing to say the least. I’ve enjoyed lots of shock rock over the decades, starting with Alice Cooper and his Dead Babies, but believe me, if you haven’t seen this video, it’s going too far!!
commented 2015-06-02 08:59:52 -0400
Terry – you know how easy it is to play the pipes and lead thousands not to glory but to death. To express outrage strategically to inflame prejudice.

It was Shiner who led the charge against Bronson’s participation but did she do so because she objected to his lyrics? Or did she do so for a personal reason? Or from bigotry?

The lyrics are no more offensive than any other rap so why doesn’t/hasn’t Shiner led a charge aginst them? Is she guilty of the bigotry of lowered expectations regarding lyrics written by rappers of colour? Or does she dislike Bronson for his beard, perchance? Or his girth?

Like I said, who knows? What I didn’t say but also think is who cares? I’d personally prefer not to hear thase kinds of lyrics from any musician regardless of colour.
commented 2015-06-01 09:04:17 -0400
Oh, and on the phrasing of your query, Joan – “Did Shriner Muzzle Bronson…” – perhaps a less loaded and more accurate phrasing would have been “Did a community petition signed by 37,000, which included his lyrics but did not mention his race, result in the cancellation of Bronson’s concert because he’s white?”
commented 2015-06-01 06:34:18 -0400
Joan: of course. So let’s looks at the evidence supporting the hypothesis, as presented by Marissa. And that would be…? Ah.
commented 2015-05-31 17:54:24 -0400
Here’s the answer to the question did Shiner muzzle Bronson because he’s white?

Maybe. Can’t rule it out. Or maybe not. Don’t know, bob.
commented 2015-05-31 13:28:01 -0400
Glen Craig, is there an English translation for those ‘lyrics’?
Charles Donovan, I don’t get called bigot or racist – to my face – when I express an opinion of that Rapcrap, I get, ‘What, doncha like music?’
Music?
commented 2015-05-31 11:14:25 -0400
Little Red Ridinghood
Talkin’ on a phone
Acton Bronson
Crappin’ on a bone
Equality
Means listen to me
Like I’m as good
As your neighbourhood
commented 2015-05-31 08:04:24 -0400
I have to confess that popular music and I parted ways permanently around the time that scratchy turntables came to be considered musical instruments.
I don’t dispute the esteemed Mr. Bronson’s right to make a living siphoning money from kids without taste, nor the right of a promoter to put him on stage, nor the right of the same promoter to move his gig to another venue in response to a community petition. You couldn’t drag me within auditory range with a crane, but then you wouldn’t get me to a Schoenberg recital either.
My objection was to Ms. Semkiw’s peculiar decision to imply that reverse racism was at work here, on the basis of, as far as her article shows, nothing at all.
It seems to be a given with Rebel Headlines: if they include an inflammatory, clickbait question (“Was he singled out because he’s WHITE?”), the answer is almost inevitably: : “probably not”.
commented 2015-05-31 00:11:53 -0400
I have never heard of Action Bronson. By tomorrow I will have forgotten his name.
commented 2015-05-30 19:41:17 -0400
Listen. I oppose the violent misogyny of rap culture. But in its vioent misogynist rhetoric, Action Bronson’s art is hardly the worst. In fact, he mixes food with violent sex metaphors to make a gibberish word salad. Satire in song all for money and why not if it sells?

This story reminds me of the extreme censorship of the 50 Cent song “Officer Down”. That was the original title before even that was censored out. It was wrongly slurred as inciting cop murders when, in fact, it was an historically accurate, artistically sensitive critique of racial profiling. Like something Shakespeare might have written were he around today.
commented 2015-05-30 19:33:02 -0400
Terry and Glenn – get a room!!
commented 2015-05-30 18:03:47 -0400
Terry……. you is a hoe foe da politically correct crowd and I is going ta pimp slap you

[Speaking]
Man what happen man?
Man I don’t know this gurl still talkin’ crazy to me man actin actin like she run me or sumthin’
What dog man you know what you need to do man
What?
Slap dat hoe man, pimp slap her ass man you get yo respect dog
Yo Feel Me Aight
Aight Aight
Do dat dog walk over there and pimp slap her
That’s what I’m talking about

[Chorus]
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap dat hoe man x3)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap her x6)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH

[Verse 1]
I’m something like a pimp from the dirty dirty south,
If you keep talkin crazy imma slap you in yo mouth,
This nigga ain’t playin bout my cheddar or my cake, if you dp something wrong then my hand gon meet yo face
My hand comin fast bout a hundred miles per hour,
Gettin hit in yo face while you bathin in the shower
I thought I told you trick better have my money off da rip, reach back like a pimp slap dat trick in da lip.

[Chorus]
Now pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap dat hoe man x3)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap her x6)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH

[Verse 2]
Askin me for some money to go shoppin at Chinese store, reach back like a pimp knock dat trick to da floor
If you aint heard i’m dat nigga datz gon put you out yo misery
Pimp slappin is what I do, known in the city
Trick get back yappin yappin in my ear,
Like a man here come my hand now all the talkin disappear
Slap fist in my house, you talkin crazy so you gettin hit
Slap ya in da face. reach back I’ma a pimp trick.

[Chorus]
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap dat hoe man x3)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH (Pimp slap her x6)
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH

[Hook] (x2)
Pimp slap dat hoe man, show her what you know man,
Give her what she need man right side her face man
Pimp slap dat hoe man, pimp slap dat hoe man
Pimp slap dat hoe man, pimp slap dat hoe man

[Chorus]
Pimp slap dat hoe
Pimp slap dat hoe
Pimp slap dat hoe
Pimp slap dat hoe
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp Pimp Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH
Pimp slap dat hoe, WHOOPISH

WHOOPISH
WHOOPISH
WHOOPISH
WHOOPISH
WHOOPISH Soulja Boy – Pimp Slap Dat Hoe Lyrics
commented 2015-05-30 17:29:26 -0400
Unless speech advocates violence, or is libelous slander, anything should be permissible in a free and democratic society. We don’t need freedom of speech for non-offensive speech; that’s already assumed. It’s speech that’s controversial that needs protecting. Finding speech, or anything for that matter, offensive is a personal choice. There have been many things that people have said and done over the years that were deliberately calculated to insult me and desecrate things that I hold sacred. I could take offense, but what would that accomplish? I have many other options than taking offence. For example, if there seems to be room for dialogue, I can engage them in debate. If that possibility doesn’t exist, it says way more about them than it does about me and my position, so I can just write them off as idiots (subjective call, I know, but it works) and continue on my way, never giving them or what they said or did a second thought. Mind you, I don’t know anything about this music festival but I assume it’s a private sector event. As such, they have every right to hire or cancel performers as they see fit. However, presumably they knew what this performer was all about before he was included on the ticket. Their acquiescence to one complaint does seem a little cowardly and disingenuous.
commented 2015-05-30 17:18:34 -0400
The implication that “public space is too precious” to allow anything that might discomfort some snowflake passing by is a particular meme beloved by censors. Would ms Shiner (who is she anyway?) not find the antics at the pride parade much more repugnant? Where is her petition about that?
commented 2015-05-30 16:47:45 -0400
Every time I denounce rap and hip-hop as ignorant and subversive, I’m called a bigot or racist (i.e. ‘shut up’).
commented 2015-05-30 16:38:36 -0400
I think it’s assumed Terry. You have to read between the lines
commented 2015-05-30 15:59:51 -0400
So – there’s absolutely no evidence – not even a claim – that Action Bronson’s concert was cancelled because he’s white. Marissa, did you just make that up for a nice, race-baiting headline?
commented 2015-05-30 15:59:05 -0400
Ahh, the left. Free speech for me, not for you….