Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Second Hand Rap(e)

             As an avid rider of public transportation, I have become increasingly concerned about the behavior of its patrons. Although, like myself, there are respectable human beings who conduct themselves in a courteous and sanitary matter, I have found myself being surrounded, more often than not, by hooligans when I occasionally take the train to work in the morning. Among the many ethical violations that I object to, the most disparaging of them has involved the use of devices that play music. My issue is that my right to embark on a relatively peaceful journey to my place of work has been brutally violated. The murder weapon includes but is not limited to iPods, iPads, mobile devices (such as the Android), and basically anything that can have speakers attached to it. My ears have been raped repeatedly by the disparaging sounds of Young Jeezy. Quite frankly, I have had enough.

            Over the past few days, I have tried excruciatingly to figure out why a person with a fully formed brain would decide to blast to the universe their taste in gratuitous rap music. I fully understand the pleasure of one's personal enjoyment of whatever choice or stripe of music he or she prefers. What I do not understand is the idea that I need to be an audience to it. I can promise to you that at no moment I have felt the urge to plug in speakers to my iPod, seconds after boarding the train, so that the other civilians on their way to work can be serenaded, at a volume that would make the ears of the partially deaf canine bleed, by Celine Dion. It begs into question the correlation between the demonstration of ignorance by those who blare music at a public volume and the type music being blasted. I cannot speak for anyone else who has been a victim of ear rape but I can speak firmly to my personal experience and confidently say that every time I have been awakened from my slumber on the train it has ALWAYS been of the hip hop variety. Is there something in Black culture that demands that not only they be slaves to vulgar lyrics but that they also must broadcast these vile words and ideas to everyone within earshot? I'm not sure if these purveyors of urban music are gangsters or Jehovah's witnesses.

           To make matters worse, many of these humans (I use this term loosely) have made the miraculous discovery, prior to boarding the train, that they themselves are the next 50 Cent (which by the way is pronounced "Fitty Cent" because Black people don't have time for more than one "F". Most of them are far too busy impeding on the world's privacy with their ridiculous slander they call music to be concerned with matters of grammatical correctness ). Many of these disrespectful patrons treat this wild and inappropriate display of loud offensive noise as a kind of sing-a-long or as I call it, "Karaoke for Crackheads" (which oddly is something I would probably find great joy in watching if it was in the evening in an establishment that served ninety-nine cent chicken wings. And of course I would be drunker than Charlie Sheen at his parole officer's wedding). So not only do I become victim to Ludacris rapping about "niggers choking their bitches with stacks of hundred dollar bills whilst simultaneously swiping their Platinum American Express card on their ba-donk-a-donk" but I am forced to also listen to Cracky McGee singing back-up. I didn't know it was physically possible to sing rap music, which is comprised mostly of spoken word, off-key, but I have been proven wrong by several drug dealers whom ride the train with me each morning.

              It would certainly be a fair comparison to look at the application of the boombox in the nineteen seventies and nineteen eighties to the current use of the latest mobile and electronic devices that come with speakers. The difference is that in the case of the boombox the only option was to play the music publicly. This still does not excuse the ignoramuses for pressing the play button and ultimately disturbing the piece with their Run DMC mix tape. Any persons twenty or thirty years ago who infringed upon other people's rights to silence are the reason why there are currently signs at every subway stop in New York City that say "No smoking. No littering. No loud music.".  What is ultimately perplexing to me in today's day and age is the fact that unlike the boombox, with an iPod or any other contemporary contraption of sorts, you actually have to make a concerted effort to make your music heard by all of the world. And to those who bring speakers to attach to their iPods etc. have made even further attempt to be audibly arrogant. All of these gadgets come with free earphones for a reason! They are expected to be used for the purposes of keeping your personal music enjoyment personal. If you cannot tell, I am terribly offended by this aghast display of entitlement. I feel overwhelmingly violated by the sounds of urban vulgarity. I believe that every individual caught on public transportation playing rap music at any volume deemed "public" should be forced into solitary confinement wherein their ears are abused by the music from the latest album of Taylor Swift. And for those of you who continually insist upon disturbing me and other well behaved individuals on public transportation with hate-filled rhetoric backed by a beat disguising itself as music, just remember, your latest tool for social ineptitude is simply a modern day boombox which makes you nothing but a ghetto blaster.

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