Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Parenting and Muddled Thinking

While Eminem is the locus of this post, I really don't intend to pick on the now 40-year-old rapper. Instead, I want you to focus on this clip of Em speaking about his parenting style . . .

Arguably, the most surprising revelation about Eminem's parenting style was revealed during a 2010 interview on 60 Minutes. Despite his excessive use of explicit language in his music, he said his home is a curse-free zone. "I'm a parent. I have daughters," he told Anderson Cooper. "How would I really sound as a person walking around my house, 'B-tch pick this up'? Profanity around my house? No. I'm not saying that there's not glimpses of me in the music. I'm not saying there's not truth in what I say, but this is music. This is my art. This is what I do."

I commend Em on wanting to be a good parent, and trying to be in the home. But do we not see a bit of a disconnect here? The language on many of Em's songs is pretty vile. He doesn't want that language spoken in his home before his children, but there seems to be no problem in marketing the music to plenty of other young kids out there who soak it up like a sponge. 

Yes, I know. Parental control and responsibility, and I agree. It ought to be exercised. But the general point still stands. I think Em—and his fellow musicians—really need to do some serious soul searching. If it's not appropriate for their children, it's more than likely not appropriate for others' children. In that case, either clean it up or begin putting "adults only" stickers on the CDs and don't sell them to anyone under 18. 

And that leads me to another somewhat wry observation. I always wonder why they call some things "adult entertainment, i.e. the vulgar, obscene magazine and movie trade. Honestly, it seems like more third-grade juvenile material. The type where naughty little boys go behind or in a shed and snicker at each other over who can use the worst cussword. Or worse things that deserve a good tanning with the nearest peach tree switch. 

Whatever it is, it's not adult. True adults know better. 

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