I’ve discussed Rhythm & Gangsta with around 4-5 people. WHY HAS NO ONE MENTIONED SNOOP ENCOURAGING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ON “Can U Control Yo Hoe”?!?!?!
Some of the language in “Can You Control Yo Hoe” mirrors exactly the language abusers use to justify their violence. You made me do it. That part, Snoop repeats thrice. It is so extreme, heart-sickening to the point that, were I a Los Angeles social worker, I’d show up at the Broadus residence to check in.
He threads the sentiment through the album, piling sex on the death on the violence. Insidiously framed by songs about God, killing, and fucking, it’s Snoop’s neverending Iceberg Slim syndrome: pimp mythology in rhyme scheme, like Iceberg Slim is someone you really wanna be. A friend shared a sad quote with me recently, about violence in hip-hop: “We treat our women like America treats us.”
I am desensitized. I am a feminist who picks nits and splits hairs. But I also give passes. I throw my hands in air in the club to the crunk. I shake my ass like tomorrow’s not gonna come, to songs written by men who wouldn’t respect me. I rap along to murder-threat verse. I say to myself: sexual expression is complex and that’s how I like it. I am an adult. I justify: I live in America, contradiction is my burden to bear. But how much am I really deaf to, that it takes something so extreme to provoke my rage, that it’s not just business as usual. How much does it break down my subconscious? How did Calvin Broadus, not super-persona Snoop Dogg but the human Calvin Broadus, get this track past his wife, his crew (Nate Dogg notwithstanding), management, producers, label people onto an album? OH, because we’ll buy it. $14.99 at Virgin times platinum numbers. I’ll multiply it next time I ‘m out, dancing “yes” and thinking “no.” The language of the abused.
[Grazie to Joan Morgan.]
PS. cut the shit with the patronizing comments section, people. i spend every moment i live obsessing about “real things,” adjusting my life accordingly.
Like it’s not all part of the same deathpower trap, anyway.

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50 Responses to EFF U CALVIN BROADUS

  1. tom b. says:

    I did! In my Pitchfork review today. Except that they edited my paragraph of splenetic ranting down to a sentence or two. Seriously, if I didn’t have to review R&G, I would’ve stopped listening right there. That song is some foul shit.

  2. tinkey says:

    and snoop dogg is also currently in a commercial for some bullshit cell phone thing with paris hilton & wayne newton, among others. i didn’t realize he had graduated from the truman capote school of how to be famous.

  3. will says:

    DUDE. And what in thee hizzle is up with him C-walking in the “Drop It Like It’s Hot” video?
    Spousal battery and Doggfather Crip-walking like “that’s what’s up”?
    Not cool, man.

  4. jck says:

    haha at this being so important an issue. he crip-walked for goodness sakes!

  5. jck says:

    while you’re at it, why not spew some venom at any of the hundreds of thousands of real people doing actual real bad stuff. i heard there’s some people in fallujah killing unarmed prisoners of war

  6. jck says:

    y’alls pririoties are whacked

  7. will says:

    C-walking and/or flashing gang signs, at least out West, is as serious an issue as any that would get young kids killed for trying to imitate their favorite rapper (also see: “what up, cuz? what up, blood, what up, gangSTA?”)
    But we were talking about domestic abuse.

  8. jessica says:

    seriously- there’s other things to obsess about than hip hop.

  9. Sara says:

    –Because most people don’t give a fa-shizzle about the new Snoop Dogg. In the record store where I work, it sat on a display mostly untouched by the large marjority of my hip-hop loving customers. Same goes with 213.
    –Double standards. It’s more important to talk about Ashlee Simson’s lipsync.
    Seriously, J, talk about whatever you want. I’m listening. Fuck the rest of y’all.

  10. Steve Schroeder says:

    Calvin and his wife were divorced earlier this year. Maybe she couldn’t take his appearances in prono films, or his mean man syndrome.

  11. I think it’s funny when people try to shy you off an issue by saying “this is not really important shit, this is not a real problem…” — what makes mass mediatized sexism, capitalist encouragement of violence as delivered in the pop narcotic. Yes, there is a war on, which is equal portions importante, and yes, we could be single moms in wheelchairs giving handjobs under a bridge, and in comparison, is Calvin’s bad news bears A PROBLEM…?
    People do this, whether they know it or not, to shut up people they are unwilling to hear, for whatever reason – whether they want to listen GUILT free, or whether they want to get back to rubbing and listen to Pavement Brighten The Corners or whatever…. I do not know…
    But listen, “Jck” – you are always negative posting on here, about things like this… But Ms Shep — she is a media commentator. She is someone who’s job, who’s role in this world, it’s to bring things to light, that is her major talent – as someone who understands and loves and hates pop culture, as someone who is a fantastic writer, someone who is willing to go deep on sexism, racism, and other isms and culture plagues — and not just go “HEY this is a Hot beat!” and leaves it there. her concern shows a respect for who and how she is in this world AND for other people. She wants to pry open the gates and get at the meat of the issue, and you should high fucking five her for it.

  12. Hashim says:

    I clap it up to you. Snoop has passed too many times.
    I was supposed to review the 213 album but it disgusted me to the point where I didn’t want to spend my time breaking it down. I should have and put them on blast.

  13. jck says:

    i don’t think its about domestic violence. its more about living in a celebrity culture. i wasn’t being flip about priorities being whacked. even if you’re concerned about domestic violence, confronting snoop dogg about it?
    its whack but snoop dogg is on the radio b/c he’s a “pimp”. unless you’re telling me you’re against the entire music business, i’m not getting why one incident is picked to be mad about. his whole career is basically about him being a pimp.
    even though “jck” really isn’t the issue here, i’ve been positive too.
    but really all i’m saying is calvin broadus is just playing pretty much the same game as all you and all a sudden you want to change the rules on him? we all know the music biz rules don’t we?
    really…..innocent people are dying, right here in america and its not b/c of calvin broadus.
    its cool if you want to keep this on a conversation level bc thats what it is to me. i dont know you and dont really want to know y’all. people dont need to be friends to exchange views on the world.
    which is what i meant before by the fact theres more important things in the world than being nice to the 50 or so people you know.

  14. jck says:

    and my estillo on the comment board and in life is to come hard verbally but it doesn’t mean i’m one hundred percent sure what im saying. but from where i come, thats how you interac politically. you bring your best, they bring their best and then you pick up the pieces as to who is right or wrong.
    by that i mean i respect jhova and shep (bot not tinkey who honestly i think is straight up unexaminedly racist).

  15. jck says:

    “C-walking and/or flashing gang signs, at least out West, is as serious an issue as any that would get young kids killed for trying to imitate their favorite rapper ”
    A) any kid who this is a threat to already knows this and won’t come on a web site to find it out.
    B) stop fronting; unless you yourself have feared being shot for flashing signs i don’t really see how you’re an expert about the menace of signs. really i think you were doing the age old thing of blaming the black man cos its convienent.
    Every Single Time a white dude calls out a rapper i just think to myself; Black Man don’t get paid in the rap game unless white kids buy it/endorse it/want it.

  16. jshepherd says:

    True, people already know that, but what about Snoop’s resanctioning of flashing as A. reflection of revitalized gang activity in Bush II America B. sanctioning /re-“cool”ing of said activity for the purpose of reinvigorating his own image/career.
    Have you heard the song? I am calling out Snoop now because it is the ugliest, most extreme track he has ever written, in the bluntest language. His lyrics emasculate men who don’t beat their partners, accusing them of being weak. I cried when I heard it, and felt sick all day. What’s worse, I talked to several of my friends about the album before I heard it and none of them mentioned it, as though they hadn’t noticed. And maybe they hadn’t… I still haven’t gotten any explanations. That fact, and the fact of the song, show exactly how misogyny and violence in rap (the primary subjects of which are African American and Latina women) reflect and reinforce misogyny and violence in America. I was also trying to show a cycle, though maybe I should have been more explicit with it: the oldest rule is that abuse breeds abuse; I have no idea whether Snoop was abused, where he learned this language, but the fact is, kids everywhere–globally, regardless of race — are going to learn it from Snoop, because he’s one of the most powerful and coolest rappers alive, for all races. Especially if they’re not being educated otherwise, which, again, in Bush II America, is likely.
    This is sticky, because I’m not talking about ALL rap; I’m not trying to bill o’reilly this shit. I wouldn’t dance to it and memorize lyrics if I didn’t love it; I wouldn’t criticize it if I didn’t love it; and incidentally I think parts of the Snoop album are incredible, from a purely aesthetic standpoint. More deeply, questioning my desensitization to the lyrics has everything to do with questioning whether I’m desensitized to a particular, pervasive and ugly status quo of misogyny/violence/racism/hate in America. It’s a cycle.
    Further reading:

  17. elqdagr8 says:

    Snoop has been smacking his “hoes” for his entire career. I mean really, Snoop, Em, 50 and the rest of the Afterwac crew were brought up in the biz by the king of all women beaters himself. Thats right, thank his boy Doc Dre for the contuined support of all of their hate. (Big up to Dee Barnes wherever you are!)
    I swear, I think all of these rappers are closet cases. (Jeru had it right…99.9 percent!) How can you get women when you are known for beating, pimpin, and trading them like baseball cards?
    I never really understood the whole “It aint no fun if the homey cant have none” shit, even tho that song is my shit! It’s hot but it’s stupid, like listening to Howard Stern. Insulting and entertaining at the same time.
    It’s ok tho. Just look at it like this.. for everytime that Snoop calls a woman out of her name, Suge sits in his leather chair, lights a stoogie and plots, thinking to himself “Pimp Slap me huh lil’ bia! I’m gonna see you soon!”
    You need to have your ears cleansed after listeing to that poison, I suggest a triple combo of Common’s “Electric Circus” cd in it entirity, Little Brother “The Listening”cd and finally anything by Norah Jones….thats right Norah Jones! Dont hate on the music outside of our wide world of hip hop. Heal yourself!
    ps…I still got that wac azz king of NY dj Punk Bastard Flex on blast for hitting Steph Lova.
    It’s like the original crossover pimp Ice T said….some of ya’ll nikkas is bitchez too!

  18. jck says:

    ayo i should have probably heard the track. I feel what you’re saying, not having heard the track from your description is seems like he must have said something ridiculous and cruel, which is mothafucking whack. If I could I’d do some kind of concrete action to protest that shit. For real.
    on the level of Snoop (who i hate more bc of what you said about his song) I do doubt whether he has an effect on “kids”. If a black man could really effect America through rap without qualification, rap would shut down the next day, in my opinion. I don’t buy that Snoop is anything more than a bystander to this, one getting paid to play his mysognistic part.
    but other than that, on the gang signs again its my opinion its much bigger than Snoop. There’s plenty of people who can rhyme positive. Those people don’t get play and we sit here trying to pick the good bits from the load of shit they send us. Fact is people who do good things are probably as common as people who do awful things but as a group those people don’t get bumped. For instance, yes that guy from Arrested Development could barely rap. But half the rap I hear on the radio, including Nelly or whoever is shit. But we still have to put up with the Neptunes. Why? Bc for reason evil plays more than good. Evil is sexy. Evil is wanted. No one finds good sexy. No one finds good “dangerous”. Good is plenty fucking dangerous.
    Anyway, peace one love always till again
    things are made tricky by racism; as in so many things I think whoever said race effects everything in america is totally right.
    on the level
    f it was that ridiculous and cruel as you’re saying then I feel you. I thought it was Snoop’s every day bullshit, which is bullshit.

  19. jck says:

    and i will read those articles

  20. jck says:

    but even those that do evil do good. forgive them mother/father for they know not what they do.
    really peace out my pizza’s here

  21. tinkey says:

    > by that i mean i respect jhova and shep (bot not tinkey
    > who honestly i think is straight up unexaminedly racist).
    um…excuse me? that’s a pretty serious insult, and you know nothing about me. i do not discriminate against anybody based on race, creed or color. only stupidity.

  22. jck says:

    dude i came to that conclusion from reading what you wrote. your choice on what to do with it.
    btw, “we need a national mourning period”

  23. will says:

    hey, jck, apropos:
    B) stop fronting; unless you yourself have feared being shot for flashing signs i don’t really see how you’re an expert about the menace of signs. really i think you were doing the age old thing of blaming the black man cos its convienent.
    Every Single Time a white dude calls out a rapper i just think to myself; Black Man don’t get paid in the rap game unless white kids buy it/endorse it/want it.
    FYI: I is black!
    Don’t make me have to type multiple N-Words to prove it, either.

  24. jck says:

    ok dude. read the New York Times article on Jin and then you’ll understand.
    btw thats awesome of you shephard to clip that commondreams article on mourning all the people killed. on the other comments. awesome.

  25. jshepherd says:

    i am not the enemy. you are always guns flailing in this piece, and you’d alreadly posted it in this comment section, anyway, which I did not delete. No doubleposting! Now back to topic, pls.

  26. Matt C. says:

    hit ’em where it hurts, j-shep. you’re in the lead so do whatcha need.

  27. joel says:

    The NYT said there was a debate about Snoop Dogg here, but it looks like people being mean to the author. maybe I took a wrong turn someplace?
    Why _not_ turn off misogyny, even if it has a good beat? Don’t we hafta, if we want to get anywhere?

  28. jck says:

    there’s a debate in there. pls read further joel

  29. ander says:

    I think one of the questions at play here concerns the role art plays in society. I think its an error to villify this rapper by suggesting that presenting a point of view is the same as endorsing or perpetuating it. I haven’t heard the song but my understanding is that he makes statements that “mirror exactly” the language of abusers. Maybe he is trying to draw out this line of thinking in order to expose to to criticism? Consider, for example, the topic-starter’s reaction to this song. He/she responded with horror at the violence in the song and the cultural context that violence was given. The reason such horror was justified is because the song is a reflection of reality. I feel like the topic-starter’s anger, however, is misplaced; he/she criticizes the artist who is just reflecting the world in which we live.
    I’d like to quote a 19th century French author, who’s name will be withheld from scholarly curiosity:
    “Some of our modern critics naively believe that youth is corrupted by the influence of certain writers. They point to the author of Werther and Faust, the author of Rene, or of Lara and Manfred, and claim that these poets of despair have poisoned the minds of this century. But such a contention is as amusing as a bad joke. It should be taken to more seriously than the theory which attributes the French Revolution to the teachings of Voltaire and Rousseau. I, as a man of letters, have the right to deny positively these miraculous effects of literary productions.
    It amazes me to hear critics condemn the influence of poets on their century. It requires the credulous imbecility of a man like Mr. Walsch, or the swollen conceit of our modern litterateurs, to thus substitute an effect for a cause. Every age imposes its own emotions and ideas on poetic minds, and by a power like that attributed to God, or formerly to the pythoness, the spirit of the times inspires poets to utter cries of sorrow or impassioned anger.
    It is true that popular feelings of revolt or destress acquire greater force when they are made articulate. The poet who finds words for the exaltation or despair of his contemporaries may write the battle song which leads a nation to war, or the funeral dirge which follows dead convictions to their tomb. Nevertheless, the power and value of the poems inhere not in themselves but in the thoughts and feelings of the people to whom they are addressed. The poet who expresses the needs of his century meets a universal response which he does not create. The spirit of the times is summed up, idealized or vulgarized by the poet….”

  30. bgh says:

    i think another question is how we as a generation chooses to debate issues of importance.
    we’re a generation of mixed ethnicity who have nevertheless grown up with the lingering scent of white supremacy. factor in the use of “irony” as a tool of the status quo. then add the factor that many of us exist within a bubble of friendship circles in which a certain uniformity of language and articulated belief is expected

  31. ritchey says:

    i think it’s pretty fucked up how people always try to make this shit okay by saying “he’s just trying to point out flaws in our society by intentionally aping people who perpetuate those flaws.” It’s such a huge reach, dudes. People say that shit about Eminem, about Snoop, whatever, it doesn’t wash. Shit is stupid, unacceptable, and just evidence that even if you’re talented you can still be a jackass. Plus, what is with this boring-ass argument people make whenever somebody’s upset about something? Because people are dying in Iraq we can’t be offended or upset about ANYTHING ELSE? What the fuck is that about? I’m with J.Shepherd all the way.

  32. jck says:

    its not a boring ass arguement, really. If we can be complicit in the horror of war over and over again, what hope do we have that our society won’t be violent? Every generation in America has been involved in a War. What kind of society does that breed?
    thats not boring. Rush limbaugh has already called Detriot “New Fallujah.”

  33. tom says:

    Do you have a lyric sheet for this horrible song?

  34. hardCore says:

    where should i start? first off, i don’t think this is or should be about Snoop Dogg. because on the real, the “misogynistic” lyrics on Snoops new cd is like kool-aid compared to a song like “bitches ain’t shit”. i even think it’s written from a different tone, more comedy than reality. so, in terms of calling out this artist, i think he’s cleaned up his act a lot, and actually shown some growth with the other things he’s talking about on his cd.
    with that said, he’s still wrong to demean women at all. but like I said above, this shouldn’t be about Snoop Dogg. what has he said to demean women that Jay- Z hasn’t, or Pac, or Biggie hasn’t for that matter? Biggie was shooting pregnant women in their stomachs on his first cd, it doesn’t get any more misogynistic than that. on a much bigger level, directors and screenplay writers continue to put degrading images on the silver screen. hugh heffner and men just like him have profited off of degrading women for years. and the president and his objectives are doing little to promote a culture in this society that values women as equals.
    so for you to call out snoop, amongst a WORLD that promotes misogyny, seems ill informed and placing the blame for society on a product of society. how backwards is that? i agree, no one should be degrading women, but i promise you, that problem is far bigger than one rapper, or one rap album. one.

  35. urrrs says:

    Understand that by putting Snoop on blast you are helping him sell his record. I don’t mean that in a negative way, just saying. I just listened to the album all the way through and I see what you mean. “Bitches” to Snoop = “guns” to 50 Cent; he talks about them so much that you can’t listen to it anymore after a while.
    I had a really different perspective on music and video game content until I talked to my friend who is a teacher, who said he really thinks it makes little kids think that hitting bitches (Snoop) and stealing cars (GTA) and shooting niggas (50) is funny and somehow acceptable. I always thought that was bullshit but he made me see his point.
    Shifting gears, on a strictly musical level, I liked the 213 album a lot more than the Snoop album.

  36. status capo says:

    I don’t understand why fucking intelligent nerds like yourselves listen to Snoop in the first place.

  37. kevin says:

    i agree with you 100%

  38. David says:

    I donno man i’m gonna guess its because we like his music in the first place. I’m sorry his music isn’t “intelligent” enough for you.

  39. RJ says:

    Yeah, Snoop should be on blast for his lyrics, because his song not only demeans women, but black males as well; why should the white world have this as their example of black males? It ties into the whole mandigo character trope that been around as long as black men has existed in North America.

  40. Jay Smooth says:

    Wow I’ve been missing a lot of action
    Joan Morgan, Fieldston represent!
    (hmm, somehow “Fieldston” and “represent” don’t look right together)

  41. Jay Smooth says:

    1. Snoop totally deserves to be put on blast for that track.
    2. I’m with Will on the crip-walk issue too.. So many of these artists act as if their gangbanging/weight-pushing days are behind them when they are cozying up to middle america on Leno, then whip it back out whenever their realness needs a steroid injection. And if we’re gonna laud Em for his “Mosh” video cuz we’re hoping it influences kids by making political engagement look cool, then we gotta hold Snoop accountable for making dumb shit look cool.
    Oh yeah, and parading a real life pimp around as a mascot is just wack as hell. Especially one as withered and decrepit as Snoop’s longtime companion. Has he gotten sent to the glue factory yet?

  42. jck says:

    i think the jay leno audience is the one who wants to have the gang banger on the couch, they are the ones really pushing for it.
    why would kids who already know about gangs in there real life really be affected by Snoop throwing up gang signs.
    A) if they are in the life, I think they’d be happy to see it, but they are already in the life.
    B) if they aren’t in the life, they might not like Snoop doing it, but won’t they be more affected by every day events. they already don’t like that life so Snoop isn’t going to change that is he?
    Not being black, i look at it from my own point of view. and i do have a heritage that gets repped at times — not in america though. And the parts I agree with, I’m happy to see Repped, regardless of what other people see. And the parts I am not happy about, it doesn’t affect me as much as my own ever day experience.
    The issues of repping a hood are couched in the Black American experience, but the thrill of the call-out from marginalized people is not solely an American phenonemon. The thrill is universal, and to me, Snoop’s signifying has alot to do with that. I see him as someone who still lives that life, but choice.
    Gangs in and of themselves are found all over the world wherever boys are in a community thats marginalized. they just have different names.
    It always gets translated. Did you know that Al Pacino in Scarface has a huge following among South Asian male youth in the UK? Because they share exactly the life conditions of Scarface.
    I could give you a person who in the parlance of “Don” who gets shouted out all the time in my community. And other people would be like “that guy did X bad thing, what a bad example”. but to those who follow him, their connection is so much more immediate that they ignore it. And those in the community who do not like it know that they have way more problems then that anyway

  43. jck says:

    everytime a rapper would call out for the BK or the BX i used to change it to if someone was repping my heritage, and felt the chills. thats why hip hop is universal now, because english is the global second language, and hip hop is speaking to the boy in the dirty dirty X — where the dirty dirty is wherever the wrong side of the tracks are
    Its also the reason wherever you go, the Shia are almost always poor
    sorry to double post

  44. zorilla says:

    “I say to myself: sexual expression is complex and that’s how I like it. I am an adult. I justify: I live in America, contradiction is my burden to bear. […] l multiply it next time I ‘m out, dancing “yes” and thinking “no.” The language of the abused.” ****>>> contradictio in terminis. wisen up or shut up.

  45. whatup says:

    Snoop is an authentic African American WHO should get a free pass from criticism AFTER BILLIONS OF STRONG BLACK MEN MURDERED IN THE MIDDLE PASSAGE. Haven’t you ever heard of affirmative action? Real African Americans (not the negroes) know that he’s joking about a cartoonish image. You flatass caucasian folk get all hot and bothered about a joke. Yes, people tell jokes about everything. LIGHTEN UP, WHITEBREAD! yOU JUST WANT TO KEEP DOWN A BLACK MALE WHO’S MADE IT. YOU DON’T WANT TO GIVE UP YOUR SLAVE-MURDERING POWER. GET REAL, with your collagened lips and fake tans trying to be black, you hypocrites!!!!!!

  46. Renzo says:

    Snoop’s just a big sell-out. One day you see him dancing in a video with Mariah Carey and singin corny love songs with her and the next day he’s talkin about pulling out his AK47. He will do anything for some $$$$ He doesn’t care bout hip hop.

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