all-encompassingly

we still remember mitch hedberg

A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

Apr 13th 2007

obama’s ho-pocrisy: candidate condemns imus, embraces ludacris

Barack Obama and Ludacris

 

of imus’ “nappy-headed hos” remark, democratic candidate barack hussein obama had this to say this week:

[imus] didn’t just cross the line. [imus] fed into some of the worst stereotypes that my two young daughters are having to deal with today in America. The notions that as young African-American women….that that somehow makes them less beautiful or less important. It was a degrading comment. It’s one that I’m not interested in supporting….What we’ve been seeing around this country is this constant ratcheting up of a coarsening of the culture that all of have to think about….Insults, humor that degrades women, humor that is based in racism and racial stereotypes isn’t fun….And the notion that somehow it’s cute or amusing, or a useful diversion, I think, is something that all of us have to recognize is just not the case….as a culture, we really have to do some soul-searching to think about what kind of toxic information are we feeding our kids.

here, here, barack. i could not agree with you more. but why don’t you say the same of your buddy, ludacris? here are the lyrics to one song, conveniently titled, “ho” (explicit language)

LUDACRIS LYRICS

“Ho”

[Chorus]
Hooooooooo (Ho)
Youza Hoooooo (Ho)
Youza Hoooooo (Ho)
I said that youza hooooo (Ho)
[Repeat 1x]

[Ludacris]
You doin ho activities
With ho tendencies
Hos are your friends, hoes are your enemies
With ho energy to do whacha do
Blew whacha blew
Screw whacha screw
Yall professional like DJ Clue, pullin on my coat tail
an why do you think you take a ho to a hotel?
Hotel everybody, even the mayor
Reach up in tha sky for tha hozone laya
Come on playa once a ho always
And hos never close they open like hallways
An heres a ho cake for you whole ho crew
an everybody wants some cuz hoes gotta eat too

[chorus x2]

[Ludacris]
Cant turn a ho into a housewife
Hos dont act right
Theres hos on a mission, an hoes on a crackpipe
Hey ho how ya doin, where ya been?
Prolly doin ho stuff cuz there you ho again
Its a ho wide world, that we livin in
feline, feminine, fantastical, women
Not all, just some
You ho who you are
Theres hoes in tha room, theres hoes in tha car
theres hoes on stage, theres hoes by tha bar
hos by near, an hos by far
Ho! (But can i getta ride?!)
NO! (Cmon, nigga why?!)
Cuz youza

[chorus 2x]

[Ludacris]
You gotta run in your pantyhos
Even your daddy knows
that you suckin down chocolate like daddy-o’s
You hos are horrible, horrendous
On taxes ya’ll writin off hos as dependents
I see tha ho risin
it aint surprisin
its just a hoasis
with ugly chicks faces
but hos dont feel so sad and blue
cuz most of us niggaz is hos too

[chorus x2]

(Ho)
Muthafuckas im so tiired of yall niggaz always talkin
bout hos this, hos that, you tha muthafuckin ho nigga
I wasnt no ho last night

(Pimp)
Ho, bring yo ass!

(Ho)
Ok, hold on

get that man a grammy! i think we can all see the artistic merit there.

maybe obama hasn’t condemned ludacris’ behavior because of the sheer time commitment it would entail. it would take weeks to catalog every harmful line the artist has sung. plus, the press conference would be mostly bleeped out, so what’s the point?

here is what i have concluded: obama doesn’t mind when ludacris calls his daughters hos. he minds when imus calls his daughters hos (or cute, depending on whether his daughters dress more like the girls from rutgers or tennessee).

ludacris’ entire discography is available by searching google for “ludacris discography” (without quotes). there, you will find that about 1/3 of the song titles directly discuss vulgar sexual behavior or innuendo. the other 2/3 just mention the subjugation of women within the songs themselves, not the titles. here are a few of my favorite titles:

  • girls gone wild
  • move bitch
  • pimpin all over the world
  • hoes in my room
  • and of course,

  • ho
  • i haven’t explored them to see which ones are the most offensive. you can check out all of the lyrics here

    but here’s the kicker. the above photo is from last november, when obama and ludacris met “to talk about young people.” i quote the sun-times:

    U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, contemplating a run for president, met privately Wednesday with rapper Ludacris to talk about young people.

    ”We talked about empowering the youth,” said the artist, whose real name is Chris Bridges.

    wow.

    six months later, when don imus used some of the same (albeit milder) language that ludacris regularly uses when he performs in front of impressionable young girls and boys in sweaty stadiums, obama had this to say (i repeat):

    [imus] didn’t just cross the line. [imus] fed into some of the worst stereotypes that my two young daughters are having to deal with today in America. The notions that as young African-American women….that that somehow makes them less beautiful or less important. It was a degrading comment. It’s one that I’m not interested in supporting….What we’ve been seeing around this country is this constant ratcheting up of a coarsening of the culture that all of have to think about….Insults, humor that degrades women, humor that is based in racism and racial stereotypes isn’t fun….And the notion that somehow it’s cute or amusing, or a useful diversion, I think, is something that all of us have to recognize is just not the case….as a culture, we really have to do some soul-searching to think about what kind of toxic information are we feeding our kids.

    where is the condemnation of ludacris? michelle malkin:

    One dumb radio/television shock jock’s insult is a drop in the ocean of barbaric filth and anti-female hatred on the radio.

    Imus gets [canned]. What kind of relief do we get from this deadening, coarsening, dehumanizing barrage from young, black rappers and their music industry enablers who have helped turn America into Tourette’s Nation?

    people need to understand this: obama has expressed outrage at imus’ hurtful words, but uttered not a peep about ludacris’ even more vulgar and obscene (and more popular) words. obama thinks ludacris is a good role model for kids. obama has teamed up with ludacris in the past to “empower america’s youth.”

    who’s next for obama and his youth-strengthening tour? r kelly?

    update: see also ho-pocrisy, where the daily gut appears to have coined the term first. however, i swear i came up with my title independently.

    24 Responses to “obama’s ho-pocrisy: candidate condemns imus, embraces ludacris”

    1. Great minds!

    2. […] Via All Encompassingly. […]

    3. doug

      Obama isn’t “inspired” by rappers who are “degrading their sisters.”

      “But just because you can say something doesn’t mean you should say something,” he said. “And I think that we have not talked enough about the harmful images and messages that are sent.”

      Interesting.

    4. I think that we have not talked enough about the harmful images and messages that are sent.

      yes we have.

      the discussion has been on the news 24/7 for the last week. “civil rights” leaders, presidential candidates, social commentators, business executives, women, blacks, radio hosts, and rappers have all made their opinions known. the hurtful words have been repeated so often, there is no one in america who doesn’t know what was said.

      we know what types of messages are harmful.

      all that is left is for the people who condemned imus and secured his dismissal to likewise condemn those artists whose words are (1) much more obscene and offensive and (2) much more accessible (and therefore damaging) to children.

      the world is waiting.

    5. N Chung

      YOU GUYS GOT IT ALL WRONG
      When Ludacris talks about “ho’s,” he’s talking about real “ho’s,” i.e., hookers. He’s not talking about talented female basketball players who did nothing to get into this situation. He’s not talking about Obama’s daughters. The toxic information he alludes to are stereotypes about black women that are plaguing society. While I don’t condone much of the rap music industry, there is no hypocrisy in Obama’s words.

    6. He’s not talking about Obama’s daughters. The toxic information he alludes to are stereotypes about black women that are plaguing society.

      i disagree. i haven’t listened to ludacris’ music and i can’t remember if those are his music videos i fast-forward through on the MTV and VH1 countdowns i tivo. however, the half-naked girls on those vids can’t all be depicting real prostitutes. are prostitutes the only people with whom black men hang out?

      and just read the lyrics i quoted above. it seems like ludacris is talking about promiscuous girls in general.

      talented female basketball players who did nothing to get into this situation.

      maybe you have met some hookers who always grew up dreaming of turning tricks. i don’t think that is the case for most of them. they are often coerced into the work by abusive men. others may be desperate for money because of a drug addiction. frankly, i don’t see the value of the misogynistic side of hip hop, regardless of the race, profession, education, or other characteristics of its subjects.

    7. doug

      Chung! I knew you would eventually delve into this one. 😉

      The toxic information he alludes to are stereotypes about black women that are plaguing society.

      Indeed. And where do you honestly think kids are getting these stereotypes from? Listening to Don Imus at 6am? Listening to Rush during the school day? Watching Sesame Street?

      Or could it be that a good part of this negative stereotype comes from watching MTV, BET and VH1 after school?

      I mean…

      The entire pop music industry degrades women and hip-hop in particular demeans black women and objectifies them as things which exist to only gratify men. See Michelle Malkin’s column for more copious, and offensive, examples.

    8. N Chung

      Garth Brooks sang about banging older women when he was a teenager (That Summer, Calling Baton Rouge). Those songs don’t negate the positive role model he’s been.

      Likewise, Ludakris’s lyrics should prevent him from using his influence on youth in positive ways in other areas of life. To accuse Obama of hypocrisy for teaming up with the rapper for “youth empowerment” is a stretch.

      I admittedly couldn’t bring myself to read the lyrics you posted (esp. since I had a temple shift this morning), but my comment was derived from Snoop Dog’s remarks.

      Most prostitutes certainly didn’t choose their professions, but it’s still wrong to equate those basketball players with hookers (or promiscuous women).

    9. it’s still wrong to equate those basketball players with hookers (or promiscuous women).

      what about nice girls to whom ludacris wrongly attributes the characteristic of being promiscuous?

      I admittedly couldn’t bring myself to read the lyrics you posted

      then how can you pretend to know what ludacris is talking about? i’m not trying to get you to compromise your standards, but, frankly, you’re defending pure bile and i think some people do that because they are ignorant to the messages this music contains.

      To accuse Obama of hypocrisy for teaming up with the rapper for “youth empowerment” is a stretch.

      i’m accusing him of hypocrisy for calling for imus’ firing (on his stated basis of the comments’ effects on the youth) yet his disinterest in getting the hip-hop misogynists canned. that he then would consult with one of the worst dealers of this child-sexualization music on the issue of empowering youth, i want to be sick.

    10. Mark

      Travis you seem to be ignoring/misreading the article that doug linked to where Obama explicitly links rap lyrics and Imus (condemning both).

      In fact his quote that you excerpted:

      “I think that we have not talked enough about the harmful images and messages that are sent.”

      (your respone: yes we have)

      When taken in context, Obama seems to be referring to the way rappers talk about women in songs and not specifically to the Imus incident.

      If you’d like to read up more on how Obama does *not* embrace these types of rap lyrics, please check out this article:

      http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/mld/myrtlebeachonline/news/local/17075630.htm

      Obama: “”We’ve got to admit to ourselves, that it was not the first time that we heard the word ‘ho,’ Obama told a crowd of about 1,200 at a fundraising dinner for the South Carolina Legislative Black Caucus in Columbia. “Turn on the radio station. There are a whole lot of songs that use the same language … we’ve been permitting it in our homes, and in our schools and on iPods.”

      “If it’s not good for Don Imus, I don’t know why it’s good for us. If we don’t like other people to degrade us, why are we degrading ourselves?” Obama said to applause.”

      Travis: “I’m accusing him of hypocrisy for calling for imus’ firing… yet his disinterest in getting the hip-hop misogynists canned”

      Obama: “I think that all of us have become a little complicit in this kind of relaxed attitude toward some pretty offensive things,” Obama said. “And I hope this prompts some self-reflection on the part of all of us.”

    11. Travis you seem to be ignoring/misreading the article that doug linked to

      the article to which you linked, while written by the same guy, was given more complete treatment at myrtlebeachonline. the yahoo article, i now see, was excerpted and only included the portion i quoted. so, i didn’t misread anything. i just had less to work with.

      When taken in context, Obama seems to be referring to the way rappers talk about women in songs and not specifically to the Imus incident.

      indeed. thank you for providing a link to another article with more complete reporting of his remarks.

      where Obama explicitly links rap lyrics and Imus (condemning both).

      you say he condemned both. sure. but calling for one guy to get fired, while calling for the others to undergo “self-reflection”….those are two very different types of condemnation, and i hope you are honest enough to admit that.

    12. doug

      My point in linking to the original Yahoo article (which is what Drudge linked to) was to show that Obama is being an opportunist and hypocrite. The fuller context of his comments only fleshes out the depth of his opportunism and hypocrisy.

      You can’t claim the moral high ground, and say that you’re “uninspired” by rappers who are “degrading their sisters,” having embraced those very rappers in the past.

      And this goes to the root of one of my problems with politicians in general, and Obama in particular (oh…especially with Obama). He is great with the sweeping moral generalities that have no practical application. “We need a new politics….We need to stop the divisiveness…We need self-reflection…” Blah blah blah.

      There has been no leadership from Obama on this issue. And there is no leadership from Obama today. Just vapid platitudes about self-reflection and a coarsening culture.

      I’ll give him major kudos if he actually does something to fight the pernicious culture of hip-hop…but I won’t hold my breath.

    13. doug

      Tom Maguire says it better than I could.

      Excerpt:

      Well. Since we are all responsible, none of us are. If, I say *IF* Sen. Obama wants to lead on this issue, he could start by pointing a finger at some real targets. Some hard targets; waiting five days and then denouncing Imus does not merit a Profile in Courage.

      Just to help him get started, I wonder whether his new friend David Geffen has any clout in the record industry; I further wonder whether Sen. Obama wants to exhort him to help clean up Hollywood.

      As if.

      Maguire also points out that we are not all complicit in this, as Obama claims. Perhaps Obama is just projecting guilt? I dunno.

    14. N Chung

      Travis said:
      “what about nice girls to whom ludacris wrongly attributes the characteristic of being promiscuous?”

      He doesn’t do that. Didn’t you just say Ludakris was talking about girls who are promiscuous?

      Doug said:

      “You can’t claim the moral high ground, and say that you’re “uninspired” by rappers who are “degrading their sisters,” having embraced those very rappers in the past.”

      If you read Bill Clinton’s memoirs, you’ll see that he can link just about every conservative with some KKK/White Supremacist/Segragationist. Just about every conservative today (not just some, almost all) has some racist connection in the past. If we follow your logic, vast majority of conservatives don’t have any moral high ground to say anything about race.

      “And where do you honestly think kids are getting these stereotypes from? Listening to Don Imus at 6am? Listening to Rush during the school day? Watching Sesame Street?

      Or could it be that a good part of this negative stereotype comes from watching MTV, BET and VH1 after school?”

      All of the above (minus SS). Like the Rutgers coach said, Imus’s comments are merely symptomatic.

    15. doug

      If you read Bill Clinton’s memoirs, you’ll see that he can link just about every conservative with some KKK/White Supremacist/Segragationist.

      Huh? How does he do this, by playing the six degrees of David Duke?

      Just about every conservative today (not just some, almost all) has some racist connection in the past.

      Ok. You just broke my BS meter.

      I call your bluff.

      Link five of the current GOP presidential field to the KKK or white supremacists. Show me photos of them with popular racists talking about “race relations” or “empowering the youth.”

    16. N Chung

      You misread what I said. I never even said any conservatives ever spoke about race relations. I said that if we follow your logic with Obama, almost all of the conservatives mentioned in Clinton’s memoirs don’t have any moral authority to do so.

      I’m at work right now, but I’ll pull some examples tonight. You can borrow my copy if you want.

    17. doug

      Chung, don’t move the goal posts!

      Just about every conservative today (not just some, almost all) has some racist connection in the past.

      That is what you wrote (emphasis mine).

      If you would like to back away from that assertion, please do.

      Here’s how I see the events vis-a-vis Obama/hip-hop:

      (1) Obama is appearing in a photo-op with Ludacris to talk about “empowering the youth”.

      The stars were aligned in Chicago Wednesday, and they were there to talk about lighting the way for the nation’s youth.

      U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, contemplating a run for president, met privately with rapper Ludacris to talk about young people.

      “We talked about empowering the youth,” said the artist, whose real name is Chris Bridges.

      (2) Ludacris is polluting the youth culture.

      Youza Hoooooo!

      (3) When Don Imus does a poor imitation of a rapper on the air, Obama calls him out.

      “He didn’t just cross the line,” Mr. Obama said in an interview with ABC News. “He fed into some of the worst stereotypes that my two young daughters are having to deal with today in America.”

      (4) Later, Obama criticizes the cultural pollution of rap.

      “Turn on the radio station. There are a whole lot of songs that use the same language…we’ve been permitting it in our homes, and in our schools and on iPods.”

      Now, this strikes me as rank opportunism.

      Did he even know who Ludacris was when they met last year to talk about empowering young people? Did he care? Apparently not. Reading five lines of Ludacris lyrics should make you cringe. Reading or listening to Ludacris reinforces “the worst stereotypes” more than anything Imus has said or done.

      But all that doesn’t matter to Obama. He’s an opportunistic politician…pure and simple.

      Now, back to my challenge.

      Show me photos of Romney, McCain, Giuliani, Huckabee, Brownback, etc, with popular racists, talking about “empowering the youth”.

      Obama wasn’t captured by a paparazzi shaking hands with Ludacris at some Rock The Vote event. Obama purposefully met with Ludcris to talk about “lighting the way for the nation’s youth”. So, show me similar connections between major conservative politicians today and the “KKK/white supremacists/segregationists”.

      I await the excerpts from My Life

    18. N Chung

      Show me photos of Romney, McCain, Giuliani, Huckabee, Brownback, etc, with popular racists, talking about “empowering the youth”.
      Like I said…

      Just about every conservative today (not just some, almost all) has some racist connection in the past.
      Please place my quote back in the context I speak (Clinton’s memoirs)

      He’s an opportunistic politician…pure and simple.
      Politician? Opportunistic? No way….

      I await the excerpts from My Life…
      Here are a few example:

      On Whitewater:

      “The other problem was that the jury didn’t have all the facts about David Hale’s connections to my political adversaries…The jury didn’t know about the money and support Hale had been receiving from a clandestine effort known as the Arkansas Porject. The Arkansas Project was funded by the ultra-conservative billionaire Richard Mellon Scaife…working through Parker Dozhier, a former aide to Justice Jim Johnson, the project set up a haven for Hale at Dozhier’s bait should outside Hot Springs” (711)

      “The racists had a far more fervent champion in Justice Jim Johnson, who had risen from humble roots in Crossett, in southeast Arkansas, to the state supreme court on rhetoric that won the endorsement of the Ku Klux Klan in the governor’s race…with Johnson, racism was theology” (84)

      “…a conservative group called Citizens United, whose principals were Floyd Brown and David Bossie. Brown had produced the infamous Willie Horton ads against Mike Dukakis in 1988. Bossie had helped him write a book for the 1992 campaign entitled Slick Willie: Why America Cannot Trust Bill Clinton, in which the authors gave “special thanks” to Justice Johnson” (586).

      “I could understand why right-wingers like Rush Limbaugh, Bill Danemeyer, Jerry Falwell, and a paper like the Washington Times would say such things. The Washington Times was avowededly right-wing, financed by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, and edited by Wes Pruden Jr., whose father, The Reverent Wesley Pruden, had bveen a chaplain of hte Citizens’ Council in Arkansas and an ally of Justice Jim Johnson’s in their lost crusade against civil rights for blacks (588).”

      Now, I was gonna look up more but I realized that the book is 1,000 pages long and I read it 1 1/2 year ago. It is not computer searchable. The only way I found these was by looking up “Johnson, Jim” in the index. If you pay me $50/hr, I will quit my softball team, stop going to the gym, and start reading from the beginning, and type every quote out for you. You’re also welcome to borrow my book.

    19. doug

       

    20. Chung, I was going to comment, but Doug’s image is good enough.

      🙂

    21. N Chung

      tenuous connection? exactly my point.

    22. doug

       

    23. I was just reading some vapid platitudes and thought I’d share:

      “People feel genuinely concerned about whether we are reaching a tipping point, where if we don’t make some decisions now, we’re not going to be able to solve some very major problems,” Obama said. “There’s just a sense we’re out of balance, we’re out of whack and the American people are going to have to engage if we’re going to be able to solve these problems.”from here

    24. Chris Brown is a good person he does not have a history of violence..cant wait til this is over and he is with a new love.