Iconic rapper turned social justice warrior, Eminem dropped a freestyle at last night’s BET Awards aimed squarely at President Donald Trump and his supporters. Of course, CNN, and other mainstream media outlets spent this morning trumpeting Marshall Mathers’ diatribe to be a primal scream channeling the feelings of millions. They have elected to ignore the fact that with a new album on the way, Eminem’s primary motivation may not have been strictly political.
Eminem is a legend in the rap game. His gritty, oftentimes violent lyrics took the listener on a tour of his psyche. Some tracks pushed the limits of acceptable free speech. Mathers achieved a rare combination of massive popular success and real respect from rap enthusiasts. The fact that a White guy made it to the Mount Rushmore of rappers also warrants mentioning.
However, the rap game has changed since Y2K. Where lyricism and aggression were once cornerstones of the genre, rap has deteriorated into lyrics that are often unintelligible spoken by artists who are taking on feminine cues. While I don’t doubt Eminem’s conviction, I don’t think that political rage is his only reason for dropping his freestyle last night. Part of his motivation is a fight to maintain relevance, as Mathers. and artists of his genre are facing extinction. (Full disclosure: I have listened to Eminem for years and have admiration for his incredibly skillful lyricism).
Mathers’ rant which may impress libs who loved him this morning, but never truly listened to his work (honestly, he hardly gave us his grade A material here. This wouldn’t crack his top 20 freestyles). The ultimate irony here is that so many of these ‘woke’ liberals applauding his parking garage freestyle are the same ones that bashed him for his controversial lyrics two decades back. Eminem was one of the lyricist to catch heat from women’s activists and the Gay and Lesbian Alliance. Hell, they are STILL protesting Eminem in 2017!
Who let Marshall Mathers occupy the moral high ground, anyway? The same guy who lyricized
- “You 36-year old baldheaded fag blow me”
- “Slut, you think I won’t choke no whore/’Til the vocal cords don’t work in her throat no more?”
- “My words are like a dagger with a jagged edge/That’ll stab you in the head whether you’re a fag or lez/Or the homosex, hermaph or a trans-a-vest
- “Don’t you get it bitch, no one can hear you?/Now shut the fuck up and get what’s comin to you/
We should take this guy’s political opinion seriously?
Em made a serious misjudgment toward the end;
And any fan of mine who’s a supporter of hisI’m drawing in the sand a line: you’re either for or againstAnd if you can’t decide who you like more and you’re splitOn who you should stand beside, I’ll do it for you with this:F**k you!
Telling a sizable amount of your fanbase, who believe in President Trump and do not support Colin Kaepernick, a rather definitive “F$&k you” right before he’s about to drop an album may end up being a pretty shitty business decision. To a rapper who doesn’t garner the accolades and attention that he once did, Eminem may find out that he may need the fans that choose to tune him out. Just ask Roger Goodell.