Censorship in Music

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“Wanna copy me and do exactly like I did? Try 'cid and get f***ed up worse that my life is? My brain's dead weight, I'm tryin to get my head straight, but I can't figure out which Spice Girl I want to impregnate.”- Eminem

“Tight hip huggers (low for sure) Shake a little somethin' (on the floor)

I need that, uh, to get me off- Sweat until my clothes come off”- Christina Aguilara

“I said, its gettin hot in here (so hot), So take off all your clothes…

I am gettin so hot, I wanna take my clothes off”- Nelly

Lyrics such as these have flooded the radio stations and MTV since before my time. Even Elvis was a problem and menace to society in the 1950s; they would only show pictures of him from the waist up. Occasionally, parents turn off the radio station because they get offended, or change the channel because Christina Aguilara is stripping on television. While my obsession with pop culture keeps me hooked to MTV, KISS FM, and even the local alternative station, parents are furious with the amount of air time artists get if they have lyrics unfit for children. Radio stations “bleep” out cuss words on the air, but sometimes they get through. Most of the time kids can figure out what artists are saying. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) put together a “Parental Advisory Label” on records that are not “fit” for children under the age of sixteen. This small label is placed on compact disks and cassettes to indicate the use of profanity or lyrics describing harsh topics in the music. Kids who try to buy the CD should be stopped at the cash register. According to the RIAA, the label “lets parents take that responsibility for their families and respects the core American value of freedom of expression ...

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...- Fonte, Diwata. “Rapping the Music Industry’s Knuckles.” Buisness Week Online. Academic Search Premier, Penrose Database: http://search.epnet.com/direct.asp?an=6415634&db=aph. 28 Feb. 2003.

- O’Connor, Christopher. “Manson Show Called Off; Cops Seize Colorado Suspects’” CDs. Addicted to Noise 23 Apr. 1999.

- O’Reilly, Bill. “The Rap on Rap.” American Scene 27 Aug. 2001:16. p.16.

- Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Freedom of Speech. www.riaa.com. 6 March 2003.

- “Senators Seek Uniform Music Labeling”. Addicted to Noise. 8 June 1999. http://www.massmic.com/labeling99.html.

- U.S. Senate. Labels and Lyrics: Do Parental Advisory Labels Inform Consumers

and Parents? Hearing Before the Committee on Commerce, Science, and the Transportation. Washington, D.C.:GPO, 2000.

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