The text book and the group that discussed music last class went into depth on why the song, “Love the Way You Lie” by Eminem and featuring Rihanna was “bad”. They discussed the lyrics, the message and mainly the video, tearing it a part for its “condoning of abusive relationships and dominant-submissive relationships.”
I personally, do not agree with the classes discussion, which is just a personal choice for me but I do believe my voice should be heard on the matter.
To start, it should be known that I am an avid lover of Eminem. My entire life I have seen him as a role model. Why? Because of the life he lives and the messages his music sends. Eminem was born to a 17-year-old mother in a bad neighborhood and lived most of his life trying to figure out why his father left him, why he had to move so much and why people always beat him up. He didn’t have a great early life and ended up dropping out of high school at 17. But despite it all, he knew he loved to rhyme and eventually discovered rapping. He never gave up.
Can you imagine what it was like to be one of the only white rappers in a predominantly black industry trying to pursue your dreams? He was making a name for himself and decided to create an alter ego to release the anger he had–i.e. the pseudonym Slim Shady cam to be. That’s why he began rapping about controversial things. But the difference between Eminem and other rappers was that he was talking about things that actually exist and are problematic not “booty booty booty” as it sometimes can be.
This being said, we can get back to the song in question “Love the way you lie.” I feel as though the background is important to my argument because Eminem wasn’t trying to promote abuse but rather bring light to it. What better way to bring light to the situation then have someone who has been both the victim and the culprit of such attacks. He, unlike most people with his social media platform, used his stardom to bring to light this issue.
I’m sorry he didn’t put a “If your experiencing this call here” disclaimer at the end of his video–NOT like he is the one in charge of the video content. But maybe–just maybe–if people had done some research into the song then they would have known that people like Rihanna and Eminem agreed to write/sing on this song because they had experienced this abuse. They were the only people they felt like in their relationship that could relate to this kind of abuse.
They may not have done it in the most ideal way, but for the early 2000’s I’d say they did one hell of a job trying to bring a serious situation to light.
I also think that people shouldn’t completely bag rap music when so many other genre’s focus on the sexualization of women and other degrading things–especially like in country music or rock music.
Overall, I just think that Eminem did
the best that he could in this situation and that the music he produces is quality. He shouldn’t be considered as an advocator for abuse. Hasn’t anyone heard that the victim shouldn’t be victimized? He was a hurt man trying to fix his life, do what he loves and inspire others. Say what you’d like but Eminem (and this song) pushes me to be my best and reminds me to not let someone ever control me.
He’s an inspiration and has taught me not lose myself in the moment (song pun).