Should we wrap up the rap?


            In this week’s assignment, our class was to write about a mass medium that could send undesirable messages to the public.  I researched the medium of rap music.  Rap music can be argued that it is too violent, vulgar, and degrading to women.  In new day and age rap music, rap artists often have lyrics of violence, gun shots, killing, fighting and many other violent topics.  Along with violence comes vulgarity.  They often cuss, in some cases, in more sentences than not.  Rappers also rap about women.  They put women into context that is degrading to the female race, speaking of them as if they are only pieces of meat.  Rap music has rapidly become the only music genre that parents want to hide from their children.

            Rap music can affect all people’s decisions they make and the way they go about their lives, but its specialization is on young kids and teenagers.  This is because younger people are often in search of their identity, and are more into what others think of them.  That is why rap music can have such a negative impact on these people.  In rap music, they rap about women and seem to only care about their outer appearance.  Rappers come off as if personality doesn’t play a factor, only looks.  This, in turn, leads to younger girls having eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia, thinking that being skinny means beauty.  Many people do not understand how much personal beauty means to the younger samples of people.  When rap music degrades women’s outside appearance, it takes large tolls on them.  Along with women degradation, rap music also speaks of sex, drugs, and alcohol.  All three of which are common problems with today’s teenagers.  When rappers talk about how fashionable it is to drink and do drugs, it can often lead their viewers to think it’s the right thing to do. 

            I looked at three different academic journal articles about the medium of rap and came to find interesting facts.  In a recent study by thy Prevention Research Center of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation in Berkeley, California, they found that young people that listen to rap and hip-hop are more likely to abuse alcohol and commit violent acts. 

            In another study in Birmingham, Alabama in 1999, they came to find that the greater exposure to rap music, the higher the rates of unemployment and parental monitoring.  They found that their daily habits tended to be more violent if they listen to hip hop or rap music. 

            In my third research, I found a study on WebMD.  On March 3rd, 2003 they conducted a study that showed that teens who spend more time watching sex and violence depicted in the life of a “gangsta” rap music video are more likely to practice those behaviors in real life.  They also stated that rap music can lead to emotional and physical health problems. 



Gordon, Ed (May 8, 2006). Study: Rap Music Linked to Alchohol, Violence. Npr (Health and Science). Retrieved October 30th, 2008 from


Gina M. Wingood, ScD, MPH, Ralph J. DiClemente, PhD, Jay M. Bernhardt, PhD, MPH, Kathy Harrington, MPH, MAEd, Susan L. Davies, PhD, MEd, Alyssa Robillard, PhD and Edward W. Hook, III, MD (March 2003).  A Prospective Study of Exposure to Rap Music Videos And African American Female Adolescents’ Health. American Journal of Public Health.  Retrieved October 30th 2008 from


Kirchheimer, Sid (March 3, 2003).  Study: Association Found Between Video Viewing Time and Risky Behaviors. Retrieved October 30th from


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