Blurred Lines of rape and relativism

Robin Thicke’s summer hit is under fire for misogyny, while many hip-hop artists get a free pass

Kevin Mazur / BET / Getty Images

The music video for Canadian-American pop star Robin Thicke’s summer hit, Blurred Lines, in which the fully attired singer makes advances toward a group of topless, prancing supermodels, is not a feminist fan favourite. Neither are the song’s lyrics: “I hate these blurred lines / I know you want it / the way you grab me / must wanna get nasty.” Critics have denounced the song as “rapey.” Here’s Elizabeth Plank, taking Thicke down on PolicyMic: “The idea that consent is a ‘blurry’ concept is deeply ingrained in the way sexual assault is represented in the media, our culture, and, yes, our judicial system. It’s what drives many to doubt the veracity of rape allegations.”

Since the song’s release this summer, a number of online parodies have emerged challenging Thicke’s supposedly warped version of sexual consent. One especially earnest rendition, out of Halifax, stars a group of women delivering a markedly different message to the tune of Blurred Lines: “Ask first / No way to know I want it / Unless I say I want it / Consent is sexy / Shows you respect me.”

Thicke, meanwhile, has denied any wrongdoing. He stated, bizarrely, this month that the song is actually a “feminist movement within itself,” and that he does not, he insists, condone sexual assault. Neither, apparently, does Justin Timberlake. The former ’NSync leading man is making his own apology tour for his clubbing anthem Take Back the Nightno, it is not an ode to the international anti-rape movement of the same name—after organizers spoke out against his misappropriation of their name and message.

That Thicke cared enough to address the backlash is surely a victory for the feminist YouTube parody movement. But if calling out misogyny in pop culture is their mission, they have all but abandoned it. The truth is, there is an entire genre of music—arguably the most popular on this continent—that is at once rife with misogyny and free from criticism. I’m talking about hip hop.

Robin Thicke’s song may very well flirt with rape, but many rappers have received zero flack for openly endorsing it. If you’re going to fault a guy for the vague insinuation that getting explicit sexual consent is, maybe, kind of a bummer, shouldn’t you also fault someone for rapping this (the words of indie darling Earl Sweatshirt): “Her body is a temple / I don’t give a f–k / I’m atheist / Make me stop / Make me, bitch.” Aside from the public scolding of American rapper Rick Ross earlier this year (Ross rapped about date-raping a woman), and the occasional chiding of Kanye West or Lil Wayne, casual misogyny in hip hop goes largely unnoticed in the mainstream. If pop-culture feminists really took it to task, we’d hear about it every day.

How to explain this double standard? The most obvious difference between the artists currently on trial for misogyny and the ones who are not (the majority of rappers in North America) is that Robin Thicke and Justin Timberlake are white and, unlike many rappers, they do not write songs about racism and poverty. Their objectification of women doesn’t come with a side of social commentary about gun violence.

Consider the triumph of Three 6 Mafia, the rap ensemble that won an Academy Award in 2005, to little protest, for their outrageously sexist song It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp. Embedded in the lyrics are two themes: treating women like chattel, and the hardships of poverty. Somehow the latter made the former less repugnant. When an artist has been oppressed in some way himself, he is, by modern liberal criticism’s standards, free to oppress others.

Eminem, who’s white and, conveniently, the only mainstream rapper to incur the wrath his contemporaries avoided, made this argument long ago, in rhyme: “So now I’m catchin’ the flak from these activists when they raggin’ / Actin’ like I’m the first rapper to smack a bitch.”

Let’s face it: Dousing everyone’s Top-40 fun in a frigid shower of women’s-studies truisms does not a good time make. But anyone whose calling it is to expose the moral failings of others should be consistent. You can’t oppose “blurred lines” in one world and ignore lines crossed violently in another.

Have a comment to share? emma.teitel@macleans.rogers.com




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Blurred Lines of rape and relativism

  1. Ms. Teitel has failed once again. I’m hardly one to explain away systemic or implied racism, but the “most obvious difference” is that blurred lines is one of the biggest songs of the year and pretty much every human being has heard it by now. Squeaky wheel gets the criticism, as it were.

    Many many years ago many religious advocates widely protested the game “Dungeons and Dragons” because it promoted satanism and ungodly behavior. As I understand it many gamers of the day were like “have these people ever even heard of ‘Call of Cthulu’? Now THAT is some ungodly stuff, there.’

  2. Hello author, can you elaborate how the song is endorsing rape? Thanks

    • Hello Rick, can you explain how on earth you can’t see it? Less of catching up to duo. Do you ever really listen to women?

      • Sorry – “Lots of catching up to do.”

      • The lyrics say it all “… the way you grab me”. I think the singer is the victim here. He is just a gentleman willing to turn the other cheek :D

      • Well, I personally don’t see it because at least once (that’s the obvious one, but I can see a couple of examples that would be arguably pointing in a different direction too), the song mentions waiting for the girl to signal consent.
        Towards the end of the song too. Surely, if the song is about rape, he wouldn’t suddenly wait for consent at the end, right?

  3. The tune sounds more like the recognition that women have a sex drive too. How is that a bad thing? Sounds as if these critics need to have a visit from Sue Johanson.

    • I’m quite sure I’ve never heard Sue Johanson advocate that a man assume a woman “wants it” when the man is uncertain/confused as to her desire for him (“don’t like these blurred lines”). I’m confident she’d advocate communication vs. creepy sexist assumptions.

      • The song is sexist, but I don’t think it’s fair to call it rapey.

  4. This comment was deleted.

  5. I read a line-by-line review of the song at slate.com by Jennifer Lai so it seems in a way this article’s happened before. Teehee. The title: “Blurred LInes” is Cocky, Yes. But Rapey, No. The article was a response to another article by Elizabeth Plank, calling it the “rapiest song of the summer.”

    Lai was spot-on and in her way, common sense prevailed.

    As a guy, if I felt in any way that this song was advocating rape, common decency would dictate I reject it. And I would. But the song is not in the least bit rapey. To paraphrase Camille Paglia, one of my idols, sex is too important to be left to the feminists. I suspect she anticipated the line would shift between where common sense ends and hysterics begin.

    • Calling women who take a rape song to task “hysterical” … how original.

      • The 40-something accounting lady sitting in the next cubicle at work always cranks up her radio when this song is on…

      • I’m a woman and I’m calling women hysterical. It’s not a rapey song. Y’all are so sensitive. Everyone who is making a big deal out of this has only brought more publicity and sales to the song, so, in a way, y’all helped Mr. Thicke make money. He thanks you, I’m sure.

  6. Certainly, the content of the rappers mentioned is superficial, callous, and objectionable. But how many people both feminists and not, are willing to go after them and get hit with a “you racist” accusation, and have the whole thing devolve into one racial argument? Thicke’s song is creepy and stupid (which makes it creepid) –both the lyrics and especially the video. But even creepier is that a female director and their creative team thought it’d be a silly, cute thing to have models running around naked while clothed men held lambs, toy cars, and brushed their hair. While I see Thicke being held accountable, I don’t see her being held to the same standard.What it boils down to is Thicke doesn’t seem to have the depth of character to write substantial lyrics that might bring the issue of the double standard into a clearer light. He wants to be cute, he wants to wiggle his ass, he wants to hashtag the twittersphere with claims of his big dick. After this song, he is one. Besides, who can understand him through that damned falsetto?

    • I totally agree.

  7. how about because blurred lines is a song SOLELY about objectifying and raping women? There is literally no other message there. Also, thank god you’re defending poor white people like Robin Thicke and Justin Timberlake from owning their mistakes. They clearly need all the help and support they can get, society has shunted them just so much.

    Also, seriously, other commenters? Thicke says he wants to liberate the women with his penis from their other men. Because they are owned and have no choice in the matter of their own sex lives, a man has to come in and give it to them. Because he thinks she’s the sexiest and he “knows she wants it”. The song is literally BLURRED LINES OF SEXUAL CONSENT.

    • You do know what “literally” means, right?

    • wait….liberate the women with his penis from other men? Where the fuck did he say that?? It’s obvious that you just want him to say that. People like you that want something to argue about could turn anything into a “rapey” argument. When he says,”He was close, tried to domesticate you” that could easily mean a father keeping his daughter from experimenting with boys.

  8. you think rap music is not criticized – you really need to get out more. I don’t think there is a genre of music that has ever come under more fire than rap music. It has been blamed for crime and misogyny, accused of being a modern day minstrel act, the cause of black poverty by whites, blacks, conservatives, and liberals. Hell, rap music is even blamed every time a white person says something racist see Don Imus, Paula Dean etc.

    • Rap music is criticized regularly, yes. Particularly recently by conservatives who blame it for so-called “collapse of the black nuclear family” (ugh). However, I don’t honestly disagree that the specifically misogynistic aspects of rap receive enough criticism. Most people just think “oh, this again” and shrug it off.

      Side note: Racists assume this is about race. It, IMO, has nothing to do with the race of the rappers and everything to do with the macho culture of rap. Look at every isolated culture that is so male-dominated (a handful of female rappers does not negate that) and you’ll typically see objectification of women.

      • well, i guess whether it has received enough criticism is a subjective assessment but I would point out that after Don Imus made some misogynistic remarks – the vast majority of the focus was on rap music. so, even when we aren’t originally talking about rap music it comes under fire for misogyny. Maybe the larger society does ignore it – but those criticism are always around to defend whites from accusations of racism.

  9. TO THE AUTHOR: you are clearly not aware that feminists have targeted a number of artists within the hip hop genre — and some have gone as far as to criticize the culture of hip hop itself. It’s lazy journalism to just assume that because you’ve only come across criticism against one artist (Thicke), that none other exist. #ignorant

  10. So from now on prior to criticizing anything, first I must create an exhaustive list of all things that might be worse, criticize those in descending order of badness, and then provide proof of having done so to Ms. Teitel before being allowed to continue?

    Regardless of whether or not my criticism of the thing I’m criticizing is valid, reasonable or accurate?

    What a wonderful position to be in, to act as arbiter of what is and isn’t allowable criticism, without ever having to address the criticism directly. No need! Someone out there said something worse at some point so Robin Thicke’s misogyny is to go unchallenged.

    I don’t know if I’m more impressed by that feat of hand waving and ignoring the issue, or by this new “hip hop” thing that I just learned about from this article. Apparently it’s real bad. I don’t know how I missed hearing about it before, as I’ve certainly NEVER heard anyone criticizing it for being violent or misogynistic prior to reading about it in this article. I don’t know how everyone has turned such a blind eye for so long, but I sure am glad Ms. Teitel has finally put this problem in the spotlight.

  11. Good point about Earl, it’s not like Odd Future also got a lot of flak for their lyrics when they came out…I mean, wait, what??

    The whole premise of this piece is bankrupt.

    • Thank you Jay Smooth for adding your considerable expertise on the history of hip hop.

      I am old enough to remember Tipper Gore’s war against rap music. The VP’s wife was on a personal crusade to end hip hop in the 90s. Ms. Teitel please do some research before you paint a 40 year old musical genre with a ridiculously broad brush. This comes off as privileged white feminist whining.

      • PREACH!

  12. The premise/argument of this article is highly flawed: one shouldn’t critique a work if there are worse examples in existence. Regardless of the fact that hip hop/rap has been highly criticized. My suggestion to the author, why don’t YOU write an article (a balanced, thoroughly researched on this time) that analyses the existence of sexism, misogyny and violence in today’s hip hop music/culture?

    • It’s an editorial.

  13. Hi Emma.

    Very well put. You show finesse in untangling the various social trend at play.

    A refreshing change.

  14. I don’t think the song is about rape either but the “blurred lines” are probably the lines of consent. If you look at it in context, he’s trying to say that she obviously wants him and he knows it. But she’s a “good girl” so she won’t give consent. He’s singing about her pursuing her sexuality by “getting at him”. This is probably why he thinks the song is liberating or feminist. So the song is probably not about rape unless you’re reading into it too much. The lyrics overall are is still degrading towards women though.

    • The point people are trying to make is that if she’s a “good girl” who won’t give consent, then she hasn’t given consent. There are no blurred lines to be found here.

      • I thought the blurred lines was more about blurred lines of her wanting him, but she doesn’t act because of her wanting to be a “good girl” so the blurred line is a taboo/desire that isn’t fulfilled in HER. He knows she wants him but doesn’t want to act as she’s already taken, papers sound like divorce papers? Sounds very much like he wants her to cheat with him blurring the line between good n bad.

        I’ve read these lyrics multiple times and there is absolutely nothing it in that indicates rape at all to me. It very much just points to a taboo relationship with some rough “animal” sex (smacking ass n pulling hair). The entire song is pretty much him ASKING for consent…even the knowing she wants it stuff is a major stretch to link to rape. Yeah some people say it as an excuse for rape, know what else they say? “But I love you” “He/she loves me” and many other words that are regularly used in consenting relationships.

  15. For the love of god, who really cares? It’s a super catchy, fun song. If anything, be creeped out by Pharrell’s line “I’ll give you something big enough to tear your ass in two” (uh..awkward..)

    Did anyone bat a lash when the Pussycat Dolls sang basically the EXACT SAME lyrics in their song Don’t Cha? “I know you want it / It’s easy to see / And in the back of your mind I know you should be home with me”

    But girls can’t be “rapey”…right?

    Come on.

    • A little lyric cherry picking on the go here. The song ends with her saying that he’s in a committed relationship, they’re friends and they shouldn’t act on their attraction since it would be cheating.

      • So it’s okay to be rapey in defense of monogamy?

    • Sorry, but all I heard from your comment was “LOL black dudes are the only rapey ones”. Not even going to go near your PCD reference. Oh, and it’s T. I. singing that line. Not that it matters since you and the author love to throw black artists all in one big pot.

  16. .. dancing on my desk , not. You have to admit at first blush (yes I honestly mean to write that) that the tune is melodic and catchy.
    And yet after a few times of listening with more legitimacy (I mean honestly) one does tend to feel more foppish, immature, and start to question ones own emotional maturity as attached to taste , seriousness, etc.
    I dont think any one music critics taste has refined to a pop sugary low level to read ‘blurred lines’ at the bottom of a champagne flute just yet.
    Seems if you don’t like it, you don’t like it. And for those of us with an abhorence for any song lyrics that are commonly associated with or rhyme with either ‘plastic’ or ‘candy’, we couldn’t do any better than go the organic yet modern method of using: an “app for that and use the off switch or just hit the change the radio station button.
    And there is so much good music out there why get hung up this sacharrine flavoured put together?
    I like the writers idea and intent of stirring up a little controversy here but it helps to remember after all, the song is going to come and go like a summers breeze.
    Grammy or Juno material? Uptick in unspeakable acts against the fairer gender? I hope not on both counts. The respectability of men depends on one and the respectability of serious music criticism depends on the other. But I guess one never knows either-,… so a little general awareness never hurts.

  17. Really? Rapey? I hadn’t heard the song, but watched the video & read the lyrics, and I’m not seeing what the fuss is about. It’s full of phrases like “let me” – the man is explicitly offering his sexual services to someone who may or may not be interested in them, but I don’t hear anything in the song to suggest that he would take it a step further and cross the line into acting against her consent. The whole song is one giant “please, baby please.”
    Anyone ever listen to Billy Joel’s “Only the Good Die Young”? It was a lot less explicit, but the sentiment is the same. Minus the naked dancing girls.

  18. The author answered her own question. The reason why misogyny in rap seemingly gets less attention is because Black Issues don’t matter on a National Scale.

  19. I agree, Consent is sexy. Nothing better than two consenting people wanting it.

  20. Gosh it’s just a song with a catchy tune and cheeky video as a 40 something woman with 2 young boys I don’t condone rape or violence but I also don’t see the point of over analysing a pop song for heavens sake there are far more graphic and insulting songs tha this one if you are going to criticise blured lines then you really need to look at other songs and analyze them I’m more insulted by songs that refer to women as whites and botched or reference that domesti violence is kinda normal

  21. What a waste of an article. This is why so many Black women have felt like traditional feminism has failed them… it’s because these dualistic matters of sexism and racism only come into play when it’s convenient for the feminist cause. Women of color have been fighting against the sexism in hip-hop for decades, but oddly, it seems like White feminists weren’t paying attention. Hmmm….

  22. How is it rape. I love the song and so does my daughter and every body else!!!!

    • Do you know everyone?

  23. How can Rick Ross say “Put molly all in her champagne, she ain’t even know it…I took her home and I enjoyed that…she ain’t even know it.” That’s the definition of rape! Leave Robin alone damnit!

    • One would have to know the lyrics to all these songs to be able to discuss them properly. And they aren’t revealed here. I don’t see any evidence that Robin Thicke’s is about rape, though I do see it could be about women using their sexual power to try to trap a man.

  24. Will Emma Teitel also attack other insulting forms of art? Like say, cartoon’s that depict a certain prophet, or a crucifix submerged in a jar of urine?

    Here’s a suggestion: if you don’t like the song, turn it off. It’s not rocket science. But so many on the left-wing of the political spectrum deem it their eternal right to be offended and express their faux outrage.

    Guess what: nobody cares.

  25. “When an artist has been oppressed in some way himself, he is, by modern liberal criticism’s standards, free to oppress others.”

    Wow, that’s a pretty big leap in logic right there. I believe a more accurate take would simply be that predominately white critics don’t understand black cultural issues with the same competence, resulting in a disparity of standards between black rappers and rappers of backgrounds that people (like the academy) feel they understand better.

    Or in the case of “Its Hard Out There for a Pimp”, it could simply be that the Academy realized that a song made for a movie that is about a pimp could be expected to contain lyrics about the subject.

  26. The funny thing is that every dude in the world thinks, “She wants me” when he’s dancing with a gorgeous girl and she grabs him sexually, but when someone puts it in a song they’re a “misogynist” . Hell, I call it optimism, and it’s the best part about dancing with random, beautiful girls. Not only that but the girl is thinking the same thing when you put your hand on her hip in response. That’s just the birds and the bees ladies and gentlemen.

    • Precisely not! That’s the whole point – men and women are different!

      It’s men who need sex more. That’s why most porn is for them.

      The kind of thinking you express is how feminists want the world to see sex – as though men and women are equal in their needs, desires, fantasies.

      From the article: “The idea that consent is a ‘blurry’ concept is deeply ingrained in the way sexual assault is represented in the media, our culture, and, yes, our judicial system. It’s what drives many to doubt the veracity of rape allegations” (Eliabth Plank, in the article).

      What is she talking about? Consent is a blurry concept and always be. Even if a girl says yes, 6 months later, or 3 years later, she can always say she felt she was coerced. And if she she has been drinking, there doesn’t appear to be a legal limit on when ‘consent’ no longer applies. For more on these two issues see Anne Kneale and Bill Mates case of sexual exploitation, and secondly, the case of Rehtaeh Parsons.

      • I’ve struggled with this concept as well. Exactly where does one draw the line between personal responsibility and rape? In an ideal world, no one should ever have to be scared about being raped. Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world and there are people who either don’t care about conscious, non-coerced consent, or the other person was drunk too. One way or another, with few exceptions, lack of owning up to irresponsibility is an epidemic in today’s society.

        • There doesn’t have to be a line drawn. But each case would
          have to be looked at individually for sense to be made of it.

          I see you are taking only the woman’s perspective. Yes, some
          women are afraid of getting raped. But I have also seen comments by women saying that even if they are naked, drunk, and have consented to sex, that the man shouldn’t have sex with her. Responsibility goes two ways.

          You’re right! Not taking responsibility, when it could be taken, and should be, is endemic to our society.

  27. Feminism: now there’s a blurry concept if ever there was one!

  28. Um. I think there is truth in the song. Go ahead and start your attack, but isn’t it true that lots of girls prance around basically naked, looking to attract sexual attention only to be unhappy about receiving it somehow? I do see blurred lines. Rape is rape, but promiscuity and perversion is so much more than rape.

    • Except that there’s a difference between dressing to look appealing and feeling threatened by persistent and overtly sexual male attention, even after you have asked them to stop. It doesn’t matter in the slightest what a female is wearing – and to argue otherwise implies males are simply slaves to their libido and unable to control themselves, which is not only insulting to males but simply not true. There are no blurred lines, if a woman or man does not give consent and is forced into it, it’s rape.

      • What is it before coercion? Because it seems to me that is the space in time that this song occupies. IMHO The song perfectly assesses rape culture, without becoming a part of it. it caricatures and parodies the behaviors that allow rape culture to proliferate. The man who won’t take no for an answer and the woman who says no after giving every indication that she that she is interested. I acknowledge rape culture exists and detest it. However I feel that any intelligent conversation about it must acknowledge that women also have a role in rape culture and it has less to do with how they dress than how they behave. I speak not of rape victims “bringing it upon themselves” and more of women who intentionally send mixed messages to men they are not interested in. just as there are true victims of rape, there are also innocents accused of rape. The lines are indeed blurred, and they only come into focus if there are witnesses present.

  29. This article is such an epic fail. It’s just a miserable fail. Teitel swims in her cocoon of white privilege, blind to the world around her, and apparently has never watched Fox news in her life, or read any newspaper, because then she would know that rappers are continuously under fire for their lyrics. Instead she pulls the ‘reverse racism’ placard out, defending the oppressed and marginalised group (rich white men) who get so much of a harsher rap from everyone compared to black men. Pun intended. My heart bleeds. In the words of Justin Timberlake – cry me a river.

  30. LMFAO @ “Flirt with rape.”

  31. I keep seeing people ask ‘how is this song rapey?’.

    To understand that better, and the objections to it better, you’ve got to understand rape culture better. Rape culture, of course, doesn’t refer to some shared secret society of rapists, but rather cultural trends that serve to intentionally blur the simple matter of consent. Anything that creates a perception that there is a situation where a person says ‘no’ but means ‘yes’ contributes to rape culture; as does anything that creates the impression that one party is entitled to receive sex in return for certain actions (i.e. the brave hero rescues the princess from the dragon, the princess rewards the hero with sex).

    In that sense, Blurred Lines is EXTREMELY problematic, because it’s basically a textbook perfect example of ‘you say no but you mean yes’. The author of the article is right in that it’s not exactly a new trend or the worst example of it, but wrong in insisting that people shouldn’t criticize it without first bringing up worse offenders. Anything that raises awareness of unfortunate implications in popular media is a good thing.

    But I think Mr. Thicke screwed up accidentally here. The song is INTENDED to be about how society pressures women into thinking they shouldn’t want sex, that ‘good girls’ don’t go after it, and that this is silly and dumb. Unfortunately, since the lyrics approach that issue through the perspective of a guy insisting that a woman wants him even though she won’t give him explicit consent, it misses sexual liberation and stumbles headfirst into creeper territory instead.

    Whoops.

    • Your interpretation of rape culture is incorrect. Rape culture is what it says on the tin a culture for example in a gang where women are not given a choice who they have sex with.
      Instead what you have done is extrapolated the term to mean any kind of traditional genre roles. Blurred Lines is not ‘rapey’ if you listen to the last rapped verse he clearly tells her to call him at the end of the night if she is in his area again. What goes on before that is interaction in a club where she flirts with him and he tells her you know you want it. This is about a man chasing a woman for sex and her being unsure.
      What you complaining about is biology. Men know when they are aroused because they have a penis. Women are less sure when they are aroused because they have a vagina. A good example of this is that men admit they find two attractive women kissing arousing. Women often say they do not find two attractive men kissing arousing. Women do find this arousing however they often do not realise this because of their biology.

  32. Maybe just make it easy on everyone and stop airing crude and demeaning music that broadcasts to youth and to the world. If you have poor morals and nasty thoughts keep it to yourself. By airing it we just make it more domestic and more okay. Ever heard of how the brain internalizes things? It creates a sense of right and wrong and a line of choice, so if we’re internalizing and admiring songs with bad lyrics we’re only making wrong choices seem more right. 1. Making the youth less in touch with good choices and appreciation for equality and 2. Causing young women to believe that appealing to these bad choices will make them more accepted by others and by males. This is by-far the right way women should be representing themselves to other people. Self respect, dignity, responsibility and appreciation for others would do writers, audience and youth well. We should nurture the youth the right way and not expect them to choose right when it comes time for those choices (should I rape her? Or not? Respect her? Touch her?) Women deserve respect for themselves and from men. Men should be responsible with their actions, self image and how they show it to everyone else. Men don’t realize the power they have over how women react to them, or they do and they use it to their advantage. This world is a disgusting place.

  33. Even if we are going to pretend this song isn’t about rape and/or “sure it’s about rape, but black guys do it all the time!” I STILL don’t want to live in a world where I’m supposed to take “you the hottest bitch in this place” as a compliment.

  34. Am I the only one who notices how picky and choosy these feminist types are? I’ve never heard them complain once about not having to register for the draft. But god forbid they get picked on in one song. Then all hell breaks loose. They like to pick and choose where they want equality so that it benefits them. It’s ridiculous.

    • How about we stop giving feminism such a bad name. People see a feminist as an angry man-hating woman who never shaves her armpits and loves to whine. a true feminist is not confined by such stereotypes. a feminist believes in equality! she does not want to be better than men, she wants to be equal, which we definitely are not. we are not equal in society, in politics, the workplace, etc. this isn’t complaining, this is fact.

      • Tell you what Jane, I’ll treat any woman as an equal who can do what I do. You show me a woman who will pick up a ladder and paint the windows on the second story without whining about it, she gets my respect. I know one (1) woman like that. All others go looking for a guy to do it. Must admit, it makes me a bit disgusted.

        Some women can do things I can’t do. Doctors, for example. They get a pass on painting the window, due to superior grit in the intellect and sheer guts categories. I know a few of them to, they get major props.

        But most Canadian women don’t measure up physically, mentally or with intestinal fortitude to Mr. Average Dude. They look at something hard to accomplish, then go bat their eyes at a guy. In my experience the more liberal/femminist a chick is, the more this is true.

        Immigrant women from (some) other places seem much more inclined to study hard or paint the damn house themselves, or at least HELP paint the house if they’re too small to lift the ladder.

        Selective incompetence is not attractive, girls. Its a nice day out, maybe y’all should go paint that window you’ve been nagging the husband/boyfriend/whatever about all summer, leave off whinging about song lyrics for half an hour.

        You don’t like the songs? Do what I do, shut off the radio and put your ipod on shuffle.

  35. It’s not give slack but give flak – to give someone slack is to give them a pass but to give someone flak is to attack (as in airplanes during wore taking flak from antiaircraft artillery.

  36. Marvin Gaye’s children, however, are less than pleased by a
    song they consider to be more than just an homage to their father.

    Pharrell and Thicke admitted that while writing the song,
    they were inspired by Gaye, but claim they did not copy him.

    “Pharrell and I were in the studio and I told him that one
    of my favorite songs of all time was Marvin Gaye’s ‘Got to Give It Up,’ ”
    Thicke told with GQ. “We should make
    something like that, something with that groove.”

    http://gawker.com/blurred-lines-songwriters-preemptively-sue-marvin-gay-1159594532

    …………………

    • Listen to a mash up of both songs and you decide. Robin Thicke’s “vocals” from
      “Blurred Lines” superimposed over Marvin Gaye’s song “Got to Give it Up”, and
      vice versa. Quite a match I must say,
      his kids have a great court case.

      h ttp://youtu.be/CZNA8ExCdZA

      ……………..

  37. Marvin Gaye’s kids sues songwriters who did Blurred Lines 4
    @robinthicke ☻ h ttp://youtu.be/CZNA8ExCdZA ☻

    Robin Thicke has the song of the
    summer but only 175,000 people in a country of over 300 million want the album?

  38. Maybe, just possibly there are women out there that enjoy being dominated by her partner when it comes to sex. Maybe Thicke talking about liberating ‘her’ with his penis is what some women want. I don’t think there’s rape innuendo in this song. I think there are some feminists with too much time on their hands and misconstrue the whole point of the song.

  39. Yeah, white men are so totally oppressed compared to every other group on the planet. Poor, poor Robin Thicke, why must he suffer so?

  40. This song is Top 40, which to me is one step away from being a complete parody of itself. In other words it is super popular, but I don’t take anything these people say seriously. Besides, if a woman does an overtly sexual song like this she’s lauded for it (Rihanna, Missy Elliot, Lady Gaga, list goes on and on). If a guy does a song about wanting sex, and in this case not getting it, he’s a rapist.

    • its the ridculousness of the double standards we live in. if a girl does a very sexualized song, she’s called a slut and a whore and trashy etc. for example, the backlash and slut shaming towards Miley Cyrus for her performance at the VMA’s. and by some, she is called a sexually liberated woman. if a man does a sexualized song, he is macho and powerful, or he is “rapey”, or both.

      • I think the problem was she was ramming her backside into Thicke’s crotch. At least, that was one of them.

        She was acting like a kid – complete with teddy bears – but doing things that some think shouldn’t be done in public anyway, or at least, should only be done by girls who are 18 or so and look like it. Next, will we have the tiara toddlers dancing like this? It isn’t sexy. It’s crude!

  41. Why do people use the word “Rapey”, all it does is trivialize rape. If it’s rape then use RAPE, if not then use VIOLATED, creepy, or whatever.

  42. “wait for you to salute” They wait for consent, don’t pick and mix lyrics to make a point.

  43. The “obvious” difference between Timberlake/Thicke and other rappers is that their music is mainstream and being played on the radio, therefore reaching more impressionable listeners. It does not have to do with the colour of their skin.

  44. Many many years ago many religious advocates widely protested the
    game “Dungeons and Dragons” because it promoted satanism and ungodly
    behavior. As I understand it many gamers of the day were like “have
    these people ever even heard of ‘Call of Cthulu’? Now THAT is some
    ungodly stuff, there.’

    spybubble download

  45. I feel like T.I.’s lyrics are a lot more explicit and unsettling than Thicke’s. I think the song is about the blurred lines of consent definitely. I think the song is about the girl “wanting him” and the boy “wanting her”, but she’s too much of a “good girl” so give her consent, which he’s begging her for, trying to get the consent, etc. There are songs that are way more “rapey”, for sure, but I really think we need to stop shrugging our shoulders at misogyny, sexism, racism, etc in all genres of music, especially rap/hip hop, etc and stop saying “oh well” or “stop whining about it”. As a female teenager in high school, I’ve grown up immersed in a culture full of oversexualization and sexual oppression, for both men and women, and I’d love to have something better for my children.

  46. I don’t get the rape implication. In fact, I see just the opposite. The song seems empowering. “he tried to domesticate you.” “that man’s not your maker.” Don’t like the bitch part… but I think the accusation led to the sell of millions of copies of a otherwise very ordinary song.” It was nothing special before…

  47. What really drives many to question the veracity of rape allegations are the hundreds of thousands of women across history who have falsely accused men of rape; and the countless innocent men who’ve been punished for a crime they didn’t commit.
    Sorry to bother you with that truth, Emma.

  48. I’m still trying to see where this song is “rapey”. Unless you mean the woman being the ‘raper’!
    “The way YOU (girl) grab ME(him), must want to get nasty, go ahead and get at me,”

  49. I have to admit this tune is really good. I love pop, however, when I heard the lyrics I had a visceral reaction. This means that my nervous system literally had its own reaction. Nuff said.

  50. thank you so much…I don’t remember anyone complaining about Poison’s “I want action tonighnt” where the singer goes “then I’ll take her, and make her…”

  51. As a woman who endorses gender equality, and as a decent person who does not endorse rape culture, I am not offended by this video. Wanting to have sex with an attractive woman does not a rapist make. Wanting to see naked breasts is a pretty common theme among most heterosexual men, even the decent ones. I’m a normal, attractive woman in my mid twenties. If I am dancing and a man comes up to me, I assume he wants to have sex with me. Heck, if a stranger smiles at me while I’m walking down the street I assume he’d have sex with me if the opportunity presented itself. That doesn’t mean I force them to have sex with me. Lets not let the meaning behind these lyrics spiral out of control. Sex is normal, people should enjoy it. Even women.

    I think the onus is more on society as opposed to the artist. We should stop looking at naked women as sexual objects, and start looking at naked women as sexual beings.

  52. Makes sense that so many people would tolerate a song that most likely condones rape when over 78 percent of the population’s spiritual beliefs stem from a book that says “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.”

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