Friday, February 11, 2005


Lizz Mendez Berry's Vibe story on how hip-hop silences the issue of domestic violence is an important, important piece - one of the few examples of real investigative, issue-oriented reporting you'll find in today's urban culture mags.

Alas, what I think will be the ultimate fall-out is a much public hand-wringing but business as usual otherwise. As Lizz points out: that's not on hip-hop alone, but it's fascinating to see how fast people circle up the wagons to defend a batterer. If you're talking the talk, i.e. "kick in the door/wavin' the 44/all you heard was 'Poppa don't hit me no more'" at least be man enough to own up to it.

UPDATE: As you can imagine, the s*** has hit the fan now that the story is out. You have your usual chorus of misogynyists claiming that "it's the woman's fault," rappers are getting heated, the article's author has been catching hate from various industry types, and Vibe's reportedly been losing advertising - though if that means one less cliche ad selling poorly designed urban wear, that might be a good thing. All this for speaking Truth to Power.

T. Havas mentions in the comments that NPR's Talk of the Nation had a show on Thursday about misogyny in hip-hop that included Todd Boyd (USC professor), Akiba Solomon (Essence) and Jay Jackson (Ruff Ryders). I'm not sure why the Ruff Ryders' A&R is up in the mix? And where's my girl Lizz?