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January 08, 2007

Comments

Emily

The music video left me fairly cold, but then I'm basically materialist in philosophy so I couldn't get my head around the guy actually being around to do the rapping.

Gotta agree with Wendy's pals' email though. It's hardly surprising that certain males would prefer that options for 'getting rid of the mess' they create remains open. Though I'm absolutely of the opinion that abortion should remain legal, I'm not under any illusion whatsoever that all those who support it are necessarily also pro-woman. And I'm not silly enough to think all people who oppose it are misogynists who want to control womens' bodies. I have a lot of respect for the ladies at Feminists for Life, and none whatsoever for Mr Hugh Hefner, who I have learned has contributed significant funds to campaigns for abortion rights... HMMMMM, WONDER WHY?

Actually the more I think about it...

I would be more impressed by a rapper exhorting young males to behave in ways so as not to put young women in the position the young woman in the video finds herself. An anti-promiscuity rap aimed at teen males? Is this too much to hope for?

wendy

I found the video very touching for a few reasons but especially because of the gratitude expressed for his Mom.

But I agree with Emily that we could benefit from looking at the issue less politically, and with a broader perspective.

Alexandra Foley

I like what the unnamed poster said about having rap videos exhorting boys to behave like men -- that is, take responsibility for their actions. That said, I am still blown away by the very fact that this message exists in this form. I think it attests to the truth that most people feel in their gut -- abortion isn't just ridding your body of a couple of inconvenient cells.

John Jansen

But what does abortion have to do with modesty?

...the highest supporters percentage-wise of pro-choice policies are single men.

It's also worth noting that in a 2002 interview with Esquire magazine, Hugh Hefner (founder of Playboy), boasted:

At the same time, I helped sponsor the lower-court cases that eventually led to Roe v. Wade. We were the amicus curiae in Roe v. Wade. I was a feminist before there was such a thing as feminism. That's a part of history very few people know.

Just as surely as the sun will rise tomorrow, we can be certain that wherever we find support for pornography, we will also find support for abortion.

And, furthermore, wherever we find support for pornography and abortion, we will also find support for so-called "comprehensive" sex education.

It's no surprise, then, that in Chicago last summer, a local "comprehensive" sex ed advocacy group -- led by Planned Parenthood -- unabashedly hosted its annual fundraiser at none other than the Playboy headquarters.

(After hearing about the event, and a plan to protest, I joined several dozen teens, parents, and abstinence educators to do just that. In retrospect, I think I would have felt guilty had I not done so.)

Colleen

I don't know the rapper's name, but there is another song by a man whose girlfriend had an abortion. It is called Happy Birthday, I think, and the lyrics are him talking to his dead son about what they could have had and that he is sorry. Both songs are beautiful, and show the importance of the life veiled in the womb.

Eve

Hi there. Full disclosure: I am the "pal" who wrote that email to Wendy about NPR.

I am not moved by the lyrics of the rap and find that slant on the issue to be sentimental and manipulative.

But I am very compelled by the idea that single men support abortion, which I had never considered. Being pro-choice doesn't mean you are pro-woman as Emily says. It could just mean that you are a narcissistic man that doesn't want to learn how to give and commit to a woman.

As we know, there are very giving and committed men who are pro-choice for the right reasons.

Amy K.

Eve, you said, "I am not moved by the lyrics of the rap and find that slant on the issue to be sentimental and manipulative."

Do you just not like the delivery, or is it the fact that it's anachronistic? What do you find manipulative about it?

Zoe

Here is a link to the other video mentioned above for "Happy Birthday":
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5A5sh8IMeQ&mode=related&search

wendy

I am going to look into whether there are raps against promiscuity, that is an interesting question...I agree with Eve that we can't look at it from the standpoint of only the woman. Whether it's "just about her body" (pro-choice) or just about her making the *right* choice (pro-life), there is a lot more to this picture, and I'm glad we're discussing it.

But I still think the video is wonderful for a variety of reasons.

Spinal Tap

How is the rap "manipulative"? Nick Cannon lived this story. I think he is fully invested in, and honest about, the gratitude he feels for the woman who gave him life in spite of difficult circumstances. What do you find "sentimental" if not that deepest of bonds?

Spinal Tap

I wonder: what would be the "right reasons" that "giving and committed" men would support the right to an abortion?

Eve

Dear All,
I answered your questions on an upcoming blog. Stay tuned...

Jeannine

Thank you Spinal Tap, you are "right on." A man's personal gratitude to his mom for her strength, courage, sacrifice is not manipulative, it is honest, deep-in-the-gut honest. He is thankful, deeply so. A wonderful video -- a man's personal story is always more powerful than the intellectual manipulations of those who prefer to cast aside hopefulness out of fear of what life may bring.

Rich

The whole concept is wonderful. To see "what could have been" and "what still can be" if you leave that butcher table and not kill your offspring. There is no great quandry here. Abortion is killing, pretty simple. Millions of lost souls who "left" before they even got to breathe air will attest to that. However those souls, in my belief, will be seen again on the other side when atonement comes upon the aborter and the abortee. STOP THE KILLING>

wendy

I saw a (fictional) drama about abortion maybe nine years ago called "If These Walls Could Talk." Every single one of the pro-life people portrayed in the movie was completely crazy, and all the abortions were totally glossed over, and you bet that I walked away thinking that the movie was incredibly manipulative.

But I also think that there's a nature human tendency to think *anyone* you disagree with is being manipulative, and that we have to resist this tendency.

So I don't find the video to be manipulative but I also have quite a few pro-choice friends whom I know are intellectually honest and not manipulative either. So to me the bottom line is that if we hope to have any influence or dialogue with one another, we have to assume the good on the other side--even when it's hard.

That's just my opinion, but we will be running 2 related blogs by Rashida and Eve on Monday for those who are still interested in this discussion FYI.


Jeannine

Another music video to share, from a dad who regrets...as equally powerful as Nick's, in a different way. With courage, this dad sings of the loss of his child.

"Happy Birthday"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?
v=a5A5sh8IMeQ&mode=related&search

Both these videos undeniably express the hopefulness that each new life brings, regardless of the circumstances. The same circumstances and life that so many conveniently call hopeless and disposable.

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