Blurred Lines
Rating: 5.00

If entertainment drives culture, we’re in serious trouble. For the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview, I’m John Stonestreet with the Point.

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A recent highly explicit music video from rappers Pharrell and T.I. Williams of their hit song, “Blurred Lines,” is a not-so-subtle endorsement of rape, and the backlash against the video, even from secular critics, has been swift.

This kind of music, says Ann Powers at NPR, “creates a space” where things like ethical codes and laws “seem to give way,” where “exploring desire [and] sensuality” are okay—even if they’re forbidden. “Blurred lines can lead to exciting new places,” she writes, “But sometimes we need to draw them, for ourselves, again.”

I couldn’t have said it better. But if history is any lesson, entertainment erases the lines we’ve drawn, changes our values, and way of life. And the idea that exploring desire and sensuality justify blurring lines has been deeply embedded in academia for a long time. Entertainment plus education is a powerful cultural force. The toxic spiral only stops when we’re willing to redraw lines. For, I’m John Stonestreet.

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Further Reading

When Pop Stars Flirt With Bad Taste
by Ann Powers | | July 3, 2013


When I glanced your commentary, I thought you were referring to this pro-rape song by rapper Rick Ross:

The fact that three different rappers glamorize rape in song is disgusting beyond words.

Some may say this is to be expected from the misogynistic world of gangsta rap. Tragically, this mindset extends to other mediums as well. A notorious example is popular comic book writer Mark Millar, who made this responseto criticism that his work makes light of rape:

“The ultimate [act] that would be the taboo, to show how bad some villain is, was to have somebody being raped, you know? I don’t really think it matters. It’s the same as, like, a decapitation. It’s just a horrible act to show that somebody’s a bad guy.”

Talk about being both clueless and heartless. The only bright side to Millar's comments is so many comic book fans were outraged by them.

With more and more popular entertainment trivializing the evil of rape, this creates a culture where rapists are viewed as victims and not monsters. We recently saw this in Montana where a judge blamed a deceased rape victim for being assaulted by her teacher. However, this represents the tip of the iceberg of our increasingly pro-rape culture.

In the wake of the Steubenville rape case, NAACP exec Royal Mayo also blamed the victim by implying she was "asking for it":

The backlash to Mayo's comment revealed the NAACP's long sordid history of defending Black rapists and demonizing their victims.

Ebony Magazine was just as bad when it posted an online article portraying convicted-and unrepentant-rapist Genarlow Wilson as being a misunderstood victim.

It wasn't until intense backlash from the blogosphere that Ebony pulled the online article and agreed not to publish it in the print version of their magazine.

The fact that mainstream entities NAACP and Ebony made such statements indicates that Americans, especially women, are are great peril if the pro-rape trend is not reversed. This makes Christians entering and redeeming popular culture even more critical.