Welcome the Hip-Hop World into the Conservative Tent

featured-image-hip-hopConservatives were outraged at my article, Bill O’Reilly Is Wrong: Jay-Z Is Worthy of America’s Respect, published earlier this week.  While hip-hop transcends cultural, racial, ethnic, social and class lines, it hasn’t yet transcended political lines. Conservatives have little understanding of what hip-hop is and the tremendous impact this powerful movement has had upon popular culture. Worse is that they condemn it without knowing anything about it.

At CPAC this month, former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie, who is running for Senate in Virginia, spoke of the need to reach out to minorities and other groups instead of letting the left “fill that vacuum.” He claimed, “I do think we have huge opportunities here to make gains with young voters.”  However, consider the recent blanket condemnations of Jay-Z, the greatest rapper alive and one of the greatest artists of all time. How can one even begin to think that the Right is even remotely inclusive or that anyone in the communities that love hip-hop — black, white, young and not-so-young — would ever vote for a conservative?

Forty-four-year-old family man Jay-Z is absolutely not a gangster rapper. For Bill O’Reilly to selectively criticize hip-hop, saying that young males idolize “these guys with the hats on backwards” and “terrible rap lyrics,” and that these “gangsta rappers” and “tattoo guys” need to speak to kids and tell them that they’ve “got to stop the disruptive behavior or you’re going to wind up in a morgue or in prison” is a double standard. What does wearing a hat backwards have to do with anything? Why not mention Marc Zuckerberg’s hood? What makes these “gangsta rappers” different from actors in violent movies like Vin Diesel or Jason Statham? Or someone with offensive speech like Howard Stern?

If conservatives hope to succeed in reaching the minds – and votes – of an enormous segment of society that crosses all American boundaries, they need to better understand hip-hop.  News flash: The majority of hip-hop consumers aren’t black, and hip-hop reflects the mosaic that represents this great country.  While there are countless terrible things that are indefensible about the hip-hop industry, many of these problems are shared by the likes of Madonna, Lady Gaga, Brittney Spears, Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber and other popular white performers.

Moreover, the reality is that so much of hip-hop is uplifting and positive. Countless movies, video games and other forms of entertainment unfortunately celebrate bad behavior — yet conservative media targets hip-hop.  This double standard should come to an end.

Bill O’Reilly claimed Beyoncé is not a good role model for young girls, stating,

“She puts out a new album with a video that glorifies having sex in the back of a limousine. Teenage girls look up to Beyoncé, particularly girls of color. … Why on earth would this woman do that?”

Why didn’t O’Reilly ask this question during the many years of the amazingly successful cable series “Sex in the City,” which glorified sex among single women? (Beyoncé at least is married.) As David Letterman rightly noted, why didn’t O’Reilly comment on Miley Cyrus swinging nude on a wrecking ball or her “twerking” Robin Thicke at an awards show watched by teenagers? O’Reilly said, “I missed that. I don’t know how.”  Selective commentary – even if his statements are right.

Conservatives should spend more time listening to hip-hop and making an effort to understand urban culture. (Hint: Accentuate the positive.) Like the music or not, hip-hop is the most popular form of music today and it isn’t going anywhere. It’s a new way of thinking, which crosses racial and demographic boundaries.  Kids today in Scarsdale dress the same as kids in Harlem, and South Central doesn’t look that different style-wise than Beverly Hills. (This white, 39-year-old PR firm owner listens to hip-hop daily – and so do people older and younger, in every state in the nation, of every color of skin.)

Hip-hop moguls like Jay-Z, Sean Combs, and Usher are people who have that hip-hop spirit – there’s nothing getting in my way, nothing stopping me from getting where I want to go.  Hip-hop is about ownership, about self-reliance, and empowerment. What could be more conservative than that? Conservatives are hypocritical when attacking the capitalist business of hip-hop. Hip-hop and the urban culture has helped to create an entire new area of economic opportunity for people who were generally outside of the system.  How many millionaires have been created because of this industry? How many jobs?

Hip-hop is about creation — owning something.  Is that not the story of this great country? And is not the cultural significance of that – particularly for the underprivileged and immigrants amongst us – something conservatives must celebrate? At some point, people of the hip-hop world, who have mostly been locked out, should be heard by conservatives in the land of opportunity.  Even if certain attributes of the hip-hop business aren’t good, one must not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Recently, I went shopping without a watch while wearing a sweat suit. The store was empty, but still I had to wait a long time for one of the countless salespeople to come over to see what I wanted. I asked to see an expensive watch, and the clerk asked me, with a straight face, if I was a construction worker before he took the piece out of the case. That “language” certainly sent me a message – if you aren’t dressed our way we don’t think you can buy from us. It also sent me away. They ignored the fact that I could easily afford the uber-expensive watch.

In many ways, the message the watch store sent me is the message conservatives are sending hip-hop fans. Tattoos and hats on backwards don’t define a person. Hip-hop culture is bigger than the Beatles – it has impacted culture indefinitely and isn’t going anywhere. Youth culture is always revolutionary and wants to do things differently – from Elvis’s swiveling hips to Madonna in the ‘80s.

The Right’s attacks on hip-hop are wrong and misguided. When we conservatives proclaim our desire to be inclusive, how can we have so little tolerance and understanding of a phenomenon as popular and American as hip-hop?  Hip-hop crosses over boundaries – now conservatives need to let them in.

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  • Infidel

    I am not a conservative. I just love good music and detest nihilism. Therefore, I have no use for hip hop rubbish.

  • Infidel

    Of course, hip hop’s critics are racist. Good argument, not. Here’s an idea for the GOP, adopt the TEA Party and stop pandering to the current cultural pollution that includes, but is not limited to, hip hop.

  • Servo1969

    This guy is a PR hack who has made his fortune convincing people to buy garbage. Since he’s just repeating himself I’ll do the same.

    Hip-hop started out back in the 80’s being fun and uplifting. Then it changed. The business discovered there was more money in anger and vulgarity. Now, it’s just popular, catchy poison; A celebration of militant ignorance piped into people’s home’s 24 hours a day.

    It encourages the attitudes that lead to failure and poverty over the ones that lead to happiness and success. It promotes a culture that leaves a trail of fatherless children and misery in its wake. And people let their little kids listen as if it’s just pure wholesomeness for them to ride along in the car and listen to songs about drugs and gettin’ paid and women with big *sses and how them other n!ggas ain’t sh*t.

    • Garvey … Once a tolerant bre

      It didn;t change. Hiphop is culture and reflects all aspects of society – al ways has.

      What changed is the white people now love hiphop – particularly the conversational stuff – so thats what is promoted – it sells.

      • TL2014

        Interesting point. As a white female, I used to jog with ludacris running on my iPod. Then I listened to the lyrics. I no longer listen to any hip hop whatsoever, because I refuse to support the disgraceful lack of morality and decency that culture seems to represent.

        • Madame_deFarge

          Such as “99 Problems and a B**** Ain’t One..”? They did that one to celebrate the DNC theft of the primary on the night The One was declared Messiah. Not that Hillary would have been better but the raging misogyny in the campaign was enough to turn this previously life-long Democrat into an Independent voting Republican. No Democrat will ever have my vote again. I didn’t like any of the choices the Republicans gave us but I at least knew someone had to stop the undocumented (records wise) Community Organizer.

  • BraddockGold

    Ronn, why would you go shopping for a watch in a sweatsuit? Have some class, man. What is it with you millionaires dressing like bums?

    • Richie Has

      Do you decide and determine what is class is? There’s sweatsuits that cost more than suits. And guess what he has more more money than you fool. And much like O’Reilly, you don’t comment on Zuckerbergs hoodies right.

      • Larry Larkin

        Why do you think imitating the toxic culture that is black ghetto trash is a good thing. The whole hip hop culture, from the clothes, to the god awful garish jewellery, to the tats is nothing but ghetto gang culture.
        And that is the most toxic offshoot of Western culture ever.

        I wonder how you would react if someone started wandering around playing at being white trailer trash? You’d sneer down your nose at them.

        • Madame_deFarge

          It’s offensive when anyone puts on a pose. It smacks of a lack of overall integrity. Never that appealing regardless of whom one is attempting to emulate.

      • cxt

        Richie
        “Do you decide and determine what is class is?”
        Seemingly YOU do.
        Why should other people not have the same right to make determinations like you do?
        “And guess what he has more money than you fool”
        A-How do you know that–I was on a board that had one of Carlos Slims grandkids on it—you have no clue whom is posting or how much “money” they have.
        B-Did not make him anymore right that he had more “money” than pretty much anybody that Bill Gates.
        And not that facts matter much to you–but O’Reilly made plenty of comments on hoodies in general…..not sure that whom the hoodie belongs to is that important.

    • jamieglazov11

      What comment, other than this one by BraddockGold, could more
      effectively reveal what is wrong with the conservative moment, why the
      Left controls our culture, and why we are losing our elections. Tragic
      and embarrassing.

      • Mark Koenig

        While Braddock’s comment is rather stupid, I would hardly say that it reveals what is wrong with the conservative movement and why the left controls our culture. Naresh and CapitalistPig have done a very good job of explaining why this is so. It has nothing to do with snobbery. The overwhelming majority of hip-hop “culture” is gutter trash. That is the reality, and it shouldn’t be “embraced” by conservatives for the very reason that it in many ways defines cultural degeneracy.

      • laura r

        phil robertson looks more like a street bum than anyone. yet the far right worships him. double standard indeed.

      • Madame_deFarge

        It isn’t about conservatism, just reality. There are plenty of “hip” salespeople who wouldn’t welcome Ronn with a fist bump under the circumstances he described. Most people in high end sales have plenty of training regarding theft. I think the reasoning might be that they’d much prefer the bonus on that watch sale than not. Jg11, talk about class. You don’t sound as if you’ve ever had to pull an hourly paycheck.

    • Madame_deFarge

      Going in to a high end retail store dressed in your gear will (unless you’re famous or known to be wealthy) will usually alert the sales staff to a possible ‘grab and run’. No one wants to lose a job because they called it wrong. They can afford to lose you before taking a hit on a $20k (or more) watch. Yes, it’s insured but frankly if they sized you up and were suspicious you just weren’t worth the aggravation.

      • laura r

        even if your famous, a sweatsuit is slovenly.

    • laura r

      maybe he wore a suit all day, & was tired. i dont like sweatsuits either, but tell that to david geffen.

  • SoCalMike

    Ronn,
    I hate to break the news to you but not only is so much hip hop a symptom and example of culture and artistic rot but it’s not even real music.
    Music requires HARMONY at a minimum to be considered music and hip hop has none. The fore runners from the 80s like Wild Thang and Funky Cold Medina at least went to the trouble to put harmony in the song but the c-R-a-p they’ve been putting out for more than a decade now if not more is devoid of harmony and therefore isn’t even music.
    The kindest thing you can say about it is it’s some type of primitive form of poetry.
    AND I’m totally on board with conservatives getting on the cultural entertainment band wagon. I consider that a must but this is not the place to start.

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      Spoken like a flyover country resident who has never listened to hip hop and thus is not qualified to speak. Music doesn’t require harmony—but an actual message. Real America will tell you that while most music today, regardless of genre, sucks, here are actual hip songs that are music, like “The Message” from 1982 and “White Lines” from 1983.

      And you wonder why there is such a divide in America? It’s instigated by people like you.

      • Mark Koenig

        I am old enough to remember “The Message” by GrandMaster Flash well, and I can tell you that it was and is marginal at best in terms of its “musical” quality. It’s more of a rhythmic poem than a song, as is the vast majority of rap and hip-hop. While it also clearly has “a message,” that doesn’t make it music, nor does it make it worthwhile. Flash’s commentary on ghetto life in this song is quite mild compared with most of what is marketed under the “hip-hop” music label today. He doesn’t glorify the culture – if anything he is railing against what he sees as the rotten aspects of that culture. Reiterating what another commenter stated before – simply citing a few exceptions to the rule doesn’t make an entire genre and/or philosophy either acceptable or admirable. With very few exceptions as a percentage of the whole – hip-hop is neither.

        • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

          In a related story…most so-called social conservatives aren’t exactly mental gymnasts, as you can’t come up with objective reasons. Subjective reasoning is garbage.

          • Wolfthatknowsall

            I don’t know about Mark, but as a social conservative who happens to have a Ph.D. in Philosophy, esthetics is one thing. What is beautiful to someone may be horrendous to someone else. What is “objective” in beauty?

            But listen to the lyrics of hip-hop … the message … and you have all the objective evidence you wish, if you decide to reject it.

          • Mark Koenig

            Exactly so, Wolf. I make several objective statements in my post above. Evidently this is inconvenient for aemoreira81, and so he chooses to disregard it.

      • cxt

        aemoreira81
        “It’s instigated by people like you”
        And of course it has nothing to do with people like YOU and your repeated name calling….sheesh. ;)

        • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

          That would not result if the arguments were logical and rational. Those are the kinds of people with whom I can deal.

      • SoCalMike

        Honey, how many fly over country residents speak 11 languages including 1/2 a dozen “exotic” Asian languages?
        Music doesn’t require harmony, just an actual message??
        Then writing a letter or an essay or making hand signs is music according to you.
        The division is caused by folks like you.
        Sorry you were dumbed down by modern academia and mass media but you’re not alone. I’m just trying to rectify the cultural damage.

      • SoCalMike

        And let’s not forget the game charades.
        What beautiful “music”!

  • truebearing

    “there’s nothing getting in my way, nothing stopping me from getting where I want to go.”

    Nothing? I guess that includes children, laws, conscience, responsibility, ethics, religious convictions, the good of others, and much, much more. To say that is a conservative principle is laughable. It is a principle of narcissism and ruthlessness. Maybe we’d have less single parent households and gangstas if more fathers let some things get in the way of their selfish fantasies.

    Why should conservatives listen to hip-hop? It’s not like anyone on earth could have avoided hearing it, even if accidentally, so we all know what it sounds like…and it all sounds pretty much the same.

    I find the lyrics to be moronic, most of the time. Frequently, the lyrics are offensive. I hate the overbearing base. The themes of the songs are an endless parade of self-reference… a paroxysm of ego. There is little if any melody. With all due respect, Ronn, I think it sucks.

    Conservatives are conservatives because they don’t jump on every bandwagon or join every counter-culture. Ronn, you claim to be a conservative, but I think your conservatism is strictly fiscal.

    • Richie Has

      Which lyrics of which artists is it you know? What is your favorite hiphop song? Guaranteed conservatives – MANY MANY MANY – listen to hiphop. Every college campus. Not just liberal ones you fool.

      • cxt

        Richie
        Anybody saying that conservatives DON’T listen to hip-hop?
        I think what people are mainly getting at the problems with the article.
        That some people don’t like hip-hop is no reason for name calling.

      • truebearing

        I just wrote that I don’t like hiphop, so why would I have a favorite song? Are you having reading comprehension problems or are you this stupid about everything?

    • cxt

      Truebearing
      Excellent post!
      And the “nothing in the way” comment is exactly how the Left routinely frames the Right–as having no values short of getting whatever they want, whenever the want.
      Seemingly the author wants conservatives to further embrace the trope so often used against them.

  • SoCalMike

    And the saddest thing to me is that so many young people who have never heard of Led Zeppelin or the Bee Gees or even Elvis Presley or Chuck Berry consider this form of whatever you wanna call it to be their favorite “music”.
    Mind blowing but true.
    The good news is that when you expose them to real music they typically light up like the Christmas tree in Times Square.

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      Define “real music”.

      • Rob Crawford

        Melodic and dependent on the performer’s skill, not a beat with a synthesized “voice”

        • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

          I was looking for an objective definition. Subjective definitions are scrap-heap material and I don’t even consider them unless there is no objective definition possible.

          • NAHALKIDES

            For centuries, Western music has been characterized by tonality (except in the 20th century), melody, and polyphony (which leads to harmony). Hip-hop is less musical than the plainchant of medieval times: it’s just repetitive rhythm, inept rhymes, and puerile if not pathological thoughts with no melody or harmony. No, that’s not a formal definition, which I could give you, but I think it illustrates the situation we’re discussing here.

          • truebearing

            Who cares what you consider to be objective? You aren’t remotely objective, nor are you the arbiter of all things musical. You have crappy taste in ideology, so it comes as no surprise your taste in music sucks, too. Actually, I don’t even consider hiphop to be music. It is babble set to repetitive rhythym.

      • SoCalMike

        Real music requires harmony among other key ingredients.
        HARMONY.

        • truebearing

          Or melody.

      • hiernonymous

        Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman! This stuff from Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley is nothing but repetitive rhythms, inept rhymes, and puerile if not pathological thoughts. My Ding-a-Ling?!!

        • 2jackets

          How anyone could listen to that awful Hip-hop is beyond me. No melody, no harmony, all synthesised beats and artificial production values.
          Give me Stockhausen any day!

          • hiernonymous

            I don’t much care for hip-hop, but I’m not so full of myself to think that “what I like to listen to” and “what constitutes music” are equal sets.

          • 2jackets

            My point exactly! Although for illustrative purposes I admit Stockhausen was probably a poor choice in hindsight.

      • laura r

        bee gees is silly nothing stuff. far cry from chuck berry.

      • Larry Larkin
        • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

          In a related story, a disturbing new study finds that studies are disturbing!

  • Naresh Krishnamoorti

    What Ronn doesn’t understand is that “popular culture” is not popular because a lot of people appreciate it, but because it’s pushed by the Progressive media, even against the tastes of the majority of people — the silent majority.

    If you ask most people in LA or New York, they’d be surprised to learn that Garth Brooks has sold more records than Jay-Z and Beyonce combined. Record sales are a little like votes. It doesn’t matter who has the aura of popularity or who is hip, as defined by the media and their lobotomized janissaries. It matters how many people buy what you’re selling.

    Conservatives have been losing because they’ve failed to appeal to their natural base of voters. Marco Rubio talking about Tupac is not going to help him win more than an insignificant handful of votes.

    You can lament all you want that conservatives don’t influence the culture; but we’ve lost the culture because, unlike Progressives, we have failed to infiltrate the media and the universities that shape culture. We can’t rectify that condition by embracing the Progressive culture.

    This is tantamount to saying we’re going to win the Hispanic vote by embracing amnesty. It’s not going to happen.

    However, this is very different from using a particular group’s culture to approach members of that group. You can use hip-hop to approach inner-city kids with positive messages; but this is not the same thing as embracing Jay-Z.

  • Geoffrey_Britain

    “Conservatives should spend more time listening to hip-hop and making an effort to understand urban culture. “

    The author has the cart firmly in front of the horse. Blacks and other minorities should spend more time listening to conservatives, so that they may learn the cultural values that lead to socioeconomic success.

    They are simple; 1) education, 2) developing a strong work ethic, 3) acceptance of personal responsibility and accountability, 4) acceptance of familial obligations and loyalty, 5) delayed gratification. Individual exceptions aside, that is all it takes to be successful in America. That is all it has ever taken.

    And, there are no substitutes. Minority success in America exactly tracks the minority culture’s embrace, neglect or rejection of these 5 virtues. Asian, Hispanic and Black ‘cultures’ precisely match it.

    Urban blacks reject ALL five virtues and that is the ONLY reason why they reside at the bottom of the socioeconomic ‘totem pole’. No amount of welfare, entitlements or minimum wage hikes will change that reality. Urban ‘culture’ needs to take a hard look at itself. When and if ever they do, their conservative brothers will welcome back, with open arms, their ‘prodigal brothers’…

    It’s the culture, stupid.

    • CapitalistPig

      Well put…..& the statistics back you up. Black families (& I should stress FAMILIES) that follow the path you describe move right up the food chain in lockstep with their fellow citizens. On the whole, Asians aren’t one iota smarter than anyone. They are just more often raised in a culture that is obsessive about family, duty & educational excellence.

      • Geoffrey_Britain

        Well, as a group, Jews score highest on IQ with the Japanese right behind. FYI, West Indian black immigrant’s ancestors were also slaves and their average incomes are equivalent to the average incomes of whites and nearly 25% higher than the average incomes of American born blacks. And, immigrant Nigerian-Americans are also extremely high performers too. These cultures embrace the Five Critical Virtues.

        • CapitalistPig

          And there’s a lot of wiggle room in IQ tests as to what’s measured, what’s ignored, what’s valued, what isn’t.
          It’s kind of funny when you work with kids. I do some through church but my wife works a lot with kids in school. It’s weird when a black kid that was considered slow because they had a bit of difficulty picking up something in a reading class, walks up to a piano & starts picking out a tune–then harmonizes with a bass line–then works in a few triplets in the rhythm—& you realize this kid doesn’t have a keyboard in his home, it just comes to him & when you teach him a few basics, he picks it up real fast!. But he has the same capacity to succeed as any of the Asians (usually Vietnamese where she’s at). I’ve long felt through experience cultures are different, talents are different & every race produces exceptional individuals–but on average, people have roughly equal ability to succeed—it’s mostly a matter of putting people in the right circumstances. A culture that values work, family & achievement.

          • Geoffrey_Britain

            I fully agree. Regarding IQ are you familiar with “The Seven Types of Intelligence”? It very much supports and amplifies what we’ve both observed and conclude.

            For a brief synopsis see: http://www.professorlamp.com/ed/TAG/7_Intelligences.html

          • TL2014

            That is a circular argument – people make the culture, not vice versa.

            Also, your example does not refute the previous poster’s point about IQ group differences; someone can be musically very gifted but have a low IQ.

          • CapitalistPig

            It depends on where you rank musical “giftedness” when determining the final number–which is why IQ, while instructive, doesn’t get the final say on intelligence.
            A simpler model is a cat & a dog. A dog does tricks, is far more trainable & interactive than a cat, a dog is more “intelligent” than a cat in how we measure it, right?
            But release a dog & a cat in the wild & I’ll promise that dog has almost no chance of survival while the cat, tough though it may be–has at least a fighting chance to survive long term.
            Now, which animal is more “intelligent”?
            Well, it depends on what you measure as important in determining intelligence.

          • TL2014

            And yet, IQ seems to be one of the most, if not the most, predictive factors of success in this country. So while the concept of IQ doesn’t “tell the whole story” and psychometric testing is certainly a perfectible art, it is actually a heck of a tool.

            A tool that, sadly, illustrates significant and persistent group differences in talents and abilities.

          • laura r

            no way. if youre gifted you have a high IQ.

    • WillielomanIII

      The idea that urban blacks do not support the five items you listed just shows that you are clearly not someone who has a strong work ethic, otherwise you would have put in a little work and done some real research and found out that your statement is clueless. You need to take a few classes in statistics…fast

      • Geoffrey_Britain

        You’re right. We should believe you instead of our lying eyes.

      • CapitalistPig

        We’re talking broadly–of course there are exceptional students who grow up in an urban culture–but I defy you to walk into my wife’s school, in a low income area & talk to a great many of those kids.
        They don’t have single book or magazine in the house. No desk, no lighted area to do homework, no time structure, little to no discipline–but somehow the parents–or parent, scrapes up enough coin for the kid to have a game system & an Android or I-Phone. If & when the parent(s) show up, & that’s not guaranteed, you get the blow-off attitude like it’s your fault the kid is dumb as a bag of hammers.

    • NAHALKIDES

      Very well put – we Conservatives should encourage the minority groups who largely reject us today to accept what we have to offer them, namely, a better way of life. It would be absurd and self-destructive for us to adopt urban culture and sink to their level.

  • shinny_head

    FYI: O’Reilly is not a conservative.

    • Hawkins1701

      ^^^ This. He’s a populist, all too often one of easy convenience.

      That said, I do appreciate his work on Jessica’s Law.

  • http://www.BanLiberals.com/ Ban Liberals

    Hip hop is GARBAGE. It has become a mainstay of BLACK CULTURE, espouses violence, rape, cop-killing, and frankly its sound and beat makes me want to puke and run.

    “Urban culture” is gang violence, the Negro Knockout Games, and flash mobs. And we should “understand” that rot?

    Perhaps if the black culture understood the white culture this ridiculous article would never have seen the light of day.

    • cathnealon

      “Music has charms to soothe the savage breast.” Well, in the case of hip-hop all it’s just the opposite.
      Come on down to the inner city people where hip hop is the only music they listen to. It’s a Dantesque hellhole.
      Maybe sombody should pipe in Chopin, Mozart and Vivaldi–it might help.

  • Eddie Moahe

    Reading these foolish comments show exactly why Obama won his 2nd term – and Democrats will continue ruling America. You fools refuse to accept you may not be completely right. Its stupidity.
    Ask your children what they listen to. Turn on the MTV music awards – is MTV only watched by liberals? You want to hold an election of only Fox viewers? Great u will win. but (unfortunately) that isn’t what America is.

    • cxt

      Eddie Moahe
      And you “refuse to accept” that YOU might be wrong.
      I’ll stop short of calling you a “fool” though. No need to get nasty over a difference of opinion over hip-hop music.

    • CapitalistPig

      It isn’t about being on the winning side–it’s about being on the right side. Democrats win overwhelmingly in Detroit, Chicago, California, all areas that are cesspools of crime & debt.

  • cacslewisfan

    This is ridiculous. It sounds like a thinly veiled charge of racism, classism, and Conservatives generally just being old white people. I listen to top 40 rap all the time, and out of hundreds of songs, I can think of two from Macklemore that don’t talk about exploiting women. I think Conservatives should definitely talk to the Hip Hop community about what being Conservative is and is not (see Bill Whittle’s speech on Conservatism). I see your point about rappers being entrepreneurs, but don’t try and tell us that Jay Z is actually a Conservative icon.

    • laura r

      the radio has garbage. in the 1990s no, now yes.

  • Sharps Rifle

    Sounds more like he’s trying to convince himself that (c)rap is relevant…as well as to gin up business for his PR organization. If Conservatives allow themselves to be associated with thugs like JZ or whatever alias that drug dealing bottom-feeder goes by, conservatism and Constitutionalism will be finished. Also, the anti-Semitism, sexism, misogyny and glorification of criminal behavior are the best reasons for Conservatives to avoid (c)rap and (c)rappers.

    I’m surprised FP even ran this article. Normally what’s posted here is thought provoking, not just plain a waste of time.

  • cxt

    In terms of “hypocritical” the author using hip-hop as an example of how conservatives need to reach out willfully ignores the anti-women and anti-gay lyrics in some of Jay-Z’s and hip-hop in generals “art.”
    How are conservatives supposed to “reach out” when the “artist” he so loves repeatedly portrays women as being useful ONLY for sexual pleasure and gay as an epithet? Sounds to me like precisely what the Left accuses the Right of believing.

  • Avidue

    Which one of you commentators asks your kids what they have to say about these questions? Do any of you? Surely you don’t have any clue what your kids are doing or listening to.

    • Madame_deFarge

      Yes, we had that discussion in our family with our boys when they were teens. The denigration of their Grandmothers, Mother, female Cousins and girls they found interesting scaled down their initial fascination with Rap and Hip-Hop. The uncle who once did merchandising and marketing for a well-known heavy metal, rap, tattooed cultural rebel and artist of the ‘spoken word’ finally became bored with “bald, fat, black guys standing on a stage screaming about how rough life is.” That finished it off for his teenage nephews. But then, in our family we sit down to dinner together with the TV off, taught the children to use good grammar, gave them a good appreciation of classical music, taught them that good manners are essentially taking care of others and being a good example. They know it’s more than helping an elderly relative with her chair at the holiday dinner table or holding a door for a girlfriend. In their twenties and thirties now and thankfully not one tattoo, druggie or alcoholic in the bunch.

      Yes, we have had many discussions about the challenges of their generation and often our own experiences in the sixties counterculture were used as a cautionary tale…something not necessary to emulate but to grow beyond.

  • http://americansforpetraeus2012.org johnnyangel10

    Well, the most I can say on Ronn is that he is definitely a PR man !

  • Harry_the_Horrible

    No.

    “I want to hear you scream!”
    “Play some rap music.”

    The Last Boy Scout

  • CapitalistPig

    I keep reading these moral equivocations in this article concerning MaDonna, Miley Cyrus, violent movies by the likes of Vin Diesel etc etc & why the O’Reilly’s of the world don’t hold them to the same standards they hold hip hop—-well, I have news for the author……they do. A lot “of those questions were asked”
    of these performers. Cherry picking a few positive themes that may happen to be weaved into a few of these acts hardly excuses the bulk of it.
    This reminds me of Ice T’s recent rant about being questioned on his intelligence & that he isn’t “respected”.
    I would answer you made your dirty filthy money peddling musical garbage to gullible kids about cop killing, dope & pushing & glorifying an anti social lifestyle that degrades women—& now that you have all that money–you’re back at the same trough of public opinion wondering why a large segment of society doesn’t “respect” you………….Go enjoy your money………but I wouldn’t live next door to you.
    And yes, I feel the same way about a good share of the rest of pop “culture”.

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      That large segment of society isn’t exactly intelligent though. One should be intelligent enough to separate entertainment from reality (unless the entertainment is marketed as reality). That there is even this controversy tells me that most Americans are mentally incapable of thinking critically—or even independently. Then again, I have come to lower my expectations for a country that was once the envy of the world.

      • CapitalistPig

        I think what you’re driving at is hip hop is as much a symptom as it is a cause.
        It’s the musical equivalent of the hot chick slinking around nude or in a teddy telling the grossest dirty jokes to a room full of leering men who are so low rent they consider this as “entertainment”. Like it takes real talent to look good & be foul mouthed & shock your audience…..that’s hip hop to me. Any parent that allows that filth into their home should have their parenting card pulled.
        I’m hardly prudish, but a lot of hip hop shocks me.

        • laura r

          i like some hip hop. but yes i have seen vids of shows which were out & out xrated. over the top for me. hip hop is really a mens game most of the time.

      • laura r

        this is what i have been saying here for months. neither left or right can think critically. its embarrassing to read some of these comments. jayz & phil robertson are entertainers. its showtime everybody!!!

  • bob smith

    “Conservatives were outraged at my article, Bill O’Reilly Is Wrong: Jay-Z Is Worthy of America’s Respect, published earlier this week.”

    you don’t get it, do you Ronn?

    hip hop as it stands today is nothing but belligerence at best and promotes nothing of values and respect.

    get over yourself. we have

    • Max Ha

      What hiphop artists do you listen to? Answer: None. Its just great to hear middle age white men lecture on and on about what music is. Ever wonder why Obama won again? YOU PEOPLE ARE THE ANSWER.

      • bob smith

        Max, you are correct that I do in fact listen to none of it today. I did listen to it in its inception years but you wouldn’t have assumed that because you apparently are a soothsayer. Had you used your clairvoyant mind perhaps you would have gleaned that my opinion on hip hop of today is based upon fact.

        Nonetheless, when and if someone such as you has something worth listening to, then perhaps I will listen.

        By the way, how does it feel to be a hypocrite?

        Your posting smacks of a know it all who has surmised that a) I do not or have never listened hip hop, b) i am middle aged c) referencing “YOU PEOPLE”

        Ever wonder why a$$wholes voted for the muslim resident of the white house?

        That’s because they are just like you, self-absorbed, close-minded, know-it-all narcissists.

        Drop dead.

  • Docs357

    That’s Whats in the White House now Jop Jop trash. Y’all want more of the same I don’t.

  • CapitalistPig

    The kids who look up to hip hop culture, particularly poor kids, would be far better served looking up to the cultures that produce a Romney family or many of the Asians that stress respect for elders, family & are obsessively competitive in education.
    I don’t want to burst the authors bubble–but 98% of the hip hop I’ve heard doesn’t excuse the 2% of it he views as a positive influence. I’ve learned all I need to know about JayZ & Beyonce.—& their act is relatively mild by hip hop standards.

  • ffighter13

    I remember when the liberation “theologist” was elected in 2008 and at an after party zzzzz ranting something about white mfrs. and we’re in charge now. It’s easy to exploit the young,you’re up against a wall here slick.

  • I_RIGHT_I

    “When we conservatives…blah, blah, blah..”
    Ronn (with two n’s no less) must have a mouse in his pocket. There ain’t no “we” Ronnnn.

  • Race_Dissident

    This column is so profoundly stupid, I’m at a loss for where to begin, so I will simply ask Horowitz, Greenfield and Glazov, what the hell is it doing on your website? And rather than write a post critiquing this nonsense, I think I’ll write a column doing so.

    • laura r

      they got the wrong guy to do the artical. i would have taken a different approach. he did make some valid points, but he cant reach conservatives.

  • Mike

    Torossian, you truly are a greasy, slimy, marketing asshole. These articles have nothing to do with promoting Conservative values, and everything to do with promoting a failed “music” brand. Who’s paying you to spout this drivel? First of all, to claim anyone in these United States knows nothing of the “hip hop” or “rap” culture is absurd. We’re surrounded by it and the filth that goes along with it. You are a Progressive (and liar which goes without saying). You are using the same tactic Progressives use… you are redefining the meaning of a great many things rap related in an attempt to bring conservatives to the left. Piss off you POS communist.

    • laura r

      so much of what is out there IS noise & filth. music TV films clothes etc.

  • http://www.clarespark.com/ Clare Spark

    I posted the first article by this author on my FB page, and got a vigorous response, mostly supporting hip hop. So I added a paragraph to the blog I had posted earlier, strengthening my argument that hip hop is at best, ritual rebellion, that only reinforces prior power relations for the black majority. See http://clarespark.com/2011/05/12/the-great-common-goes-to-the-white-house/: “Rappers, primitivists, and ritual rebellion.” I also made an argument for cultural syncretism, or the melting pot that created the great pop music of the 20th century.

  • WillielomanIII

    Excellent article, great to see it here. For the folks here that clearly have no facts upon which they are basing their opinions, the general Hip-Hop culture is all about dealing with things as they are, not fantasy land like the lefties generally conceive. Ronn is definitely on to something here and I hope it takes hold. We need people who vote to be focused on facts and outcomes, not fantasies and Hip-Hop culture is great place to find those voters… Thank you Ronn!

  • the truth

    Ronn is correct about O’Reilly’s selective moral outrage. When he makes ill -informed statements he looks out of touch and does zero good for the conservative movement.
    And yes Jay-Z most certainly does deserve our respect because it points to the colorblind success anyone can achieve in this the great country. But he has to earn it. His ‘don’t believe all the white lies’ statement at Obama’s inauguration along with his many other ‘hating on whitey’ comments doesn’t endear him to me and relegates him to Malcom ‘the white man is the devil’ X status until he proves otherwise.
    Calling him one of the greatest ‘artists’ of all time is laughable but considering there are no longer standards of excellence in any artistic field this isn’t surprising. Submerging a cross in urine a la Andress Serrano or putting one’s feces on display a la Piero Manzoni will get you rave reviews from the NYT’s art critic and invited to all the right cocktail parties. I could see if Ronn mentioned some of the truly great Motown ‘artists’ he’d be have a leg to stand on.
    If Ronn wants to ‘walk the talk’ as a conservative he can enlighten Jay-Z as to the Republican’s superior track record on civil rights as compared to the Democrats. He can mention how white “Christian’ civilization was the first in world history to end slavery. How the NAACP was started by two white Jews. And how the blues, jazz and reggae would be inconceivable under Islam, etc.
    He doesn’t have to be in their face about it but he can certainly plant seeds As a respected PR man he should have the tact to discuss these issues in a non-polemical fashion and still retain their respect. If he already has great but if he doesn’t then he’s no better than all the ‘hating on Ronn’ commenters on this thread who’ve probably never engaged any people of color on these issues either.

  • DogmaelJones1

    All I have to do is listen to this hip-hop crap to understand that it’s anti-music, anti-esthetics, and anti-everything else. It is ugliness glorified. It doesn’t matter which “race” originated and popularized it. It’s crap.

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      In a related story, you’re probably not exactly high IQ. What gives you the qualification to judge? Half the country will say the same thing about country music. About the only thing on which most of the country can agree in terms of music is adult contemporary. There is a reason NYC went 17 years without a country music station.

      • DogmaelJones1

        In a related story, you’re wrong: I despise country music,as well. Yes, I am high IQ. I don’t care what “half the country” says about hip-hop or country music. Hip-hop is nihilistic, country music is chewing gum for minds at permanent rest. Hip-hop goes out of its way to be ugly. What gives me the qualification to judge? For one thing, not replying to a reader with an insult. Try this on for size:
        http://ruleofreason.blogspot.com/ I’m the author. And you’ve produced what….?

        • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

          You could have fooled me!

          As for being an author—anyone can author material…it doesn’t exactly make them intelligent!

          And you’ve produced what….?

          Stupid question not deserving of an answer.

          • DogmaelJones1

            So you don’t want to bother reading anything. I just magically” author material. And, why is my question so “stupid”? Have you produced anything original? Anything at all? Or are you just an envious mediocrity and a troll to boot?

      • NAHALKIDES

        In other words, you’re a cultural relativist, and nobody is “qualified to judge” one work of art better than another. This isn’t the place to establish some objective standards for esthetics, but it can be done. All you’re doing here is injecting squid ink to cover up Torossian’s intellectual failings in this article.

  • cjkcjk

    So you’re saying James is a male prostitute?

  • Wolfthatknowsall

    Flagged …

  • Wolfthatknowsall

    If I am to embrace hip-hop, in order to get people who normally don’t vote … and if they do, vote DEM by about 98% … I’d rather leave it alone. Hop-Hop is only marginally “music”, and its corollary, rap, is not music at all.

    Thanks,but I’ll pass.

    When a hip-hop artist comes along with the talent of a Mozart, Beethoven, or Tschaikovsky, I might be tempted to listen. But until then? I’ll pass …

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      Then you might as well kiss away the Presidency or the Senate…as those people are going to be the swing votes.

      • Wolfthatknowsall

        Of course, they’re not going to be the “swing votes”. If evangelical Christians and Paulbots had voted for Romney in the last election, he would have won (despite DEM voter fraud).

        I’d rather not embrace a “musical” form that stands against everything I … and every other Constitutional conservative … believes in.

        If the rappers and hip-hop groups can make money with their filth, so be it. Pursuit of happiness, and all that. But do they actually make anyone else happy, in the process?

  • RAM500

    Talk about grasping at straws! So what if hip-hop is less bad than nuclear sludge?

  • http://tinatrent.com/ Tina Trent

    Because what I’m looking for when I come to this site is to be scolded by a race-babble spewing simpleton about how I don’t love songs about killing cops enough?

    Did you guys lose a card game or something?

  • NAHALKIDES

    One thing is obvious, Ronn – when it comes to culture, you’re no Mark Steyn:

    “I paid for them titties, get your own
    It ain’t safe in the city, watch the throne
    You say I care more about them Basquions
    Basquiats, she learnin a new word, it’s yacht”

    — Jay-Z

    “But, oh my dear
    Our love is here to stay
    Together we’re going a long long way
    In time the Rockies may crumble
    Gibraltar may tumble
    They’re only made of clay
    But our love is here to stay”

    — Ira Gershwin

    There’s a difference between these lyrics, and a difference between the two cultures that produced them. The second is something America can be really proud of, popular music that is nonetheless excellent; the first is the product of the same urban values that animate some guy named “Studda” when he murders you for your cell phone. The fact that you don’t know this is a shocking confession of know-nothingism. Once again, we see that being able to write about some issues, say business regulation in NYC, does not qualify one as a cultural critic. You simply don’t know enough, and so choose to glorify your own appalling ignorance and lack of discrimination.

    When you posted “Jay-Z is worthy of America’s respect” two days ago, we commentators basically handed you your head. Yes, there were a few irrelevant criticisms, but for the most part, these criticisms were well-taken and between them left your thesis in tatters. Rather than answer our objections, you have simply chosen to double-down.

    “Politics is downstream of culture” as the late Andrew Breitbart is supposed to have said. The culture of hip-hop leads to the politics of the inner-city, i.e. socialist-Democrat. Yes, white kids listen to this trash also; the reason is they’re trying to fill the vacuum the cultural Left has created. Conservatism aims to conserve what is best in Western Civilization, in art as well as politics, and we want to fill that vacuum with something better.

    A program of “sex, drugs, and hip-hop” may be Libertarian, but it is not Conservative, and neither are you.

  • cxt

    I’ve been giving this considerable thought and what jumps out at me now is that in 2 and counting articles the author has taken great pains to establish the business “steet cred” of Jay-Z and has taken equal pains to belabor the issue in terms of why conservatives need to embrace him.
    Oddly missing in either aticle is an explination of why Jay-Z, whom by all accounts is an astue businessman and presumably invests and markets himself with the best money can buy does not more visably/publically embrace the businessman POV.
    No, Jay-Z hangs with the “cool kids” not the “boring” and “un-hip” people that he trusts to invest his money and run his businesses.
    With his PERSONAL money, Jay-Z is likely far more like Mitt Romney–but Romney is sooooo “un-cool” that Jay-Z would never stoop to endorsing such.
    So in terms of the articles–perhaps a better question is why hip-hop–according to the articles–a VERY business savey enterprise–does not more publically support conservative business principles???

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      The short answer to your last question is that conservatives need to come to the urban areas first to show that they appreciate them as Americans…a personal presence isn’t required, but out of home advertising would help. You can’t vote for a nonexistent candidate…the black vote is largely “Democrat by default”.

      • NAHALKIDES

        It’s true that Conservatives have largely given up on urban areas, and that we should work to attract such votes as we can get there. But it’s also true that more than default is at work in getting the Democrats more than 90% of the urban vote: it’s largely a single-parent welfare culture, and we can’t possibly outbid the Democrats in terms of offering more of other people’s money as bribes for their votes. We can only offer a better way – honest work and self-respect – and hope to persuade a few. Or figure out a way to cut off the welfare so the Dems can’t buy votes any more.

        • Wolfthatknowsall

          Hear! Hear!

        • Sharps Rifle

          OUTSTANDING!

          • NAHALKIDES

            Thanks, Sharps and Wolf!

      • cxt

        aemoreira81
        Your absolutely right about that.
        But I disagree that it is “Democrat by default.” I don’t think………I said “think” –could easily be wrong here.
        But I do think if they don’t try then they are sure to lose.
        You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

  • cxt

    Ronn
    I’m surprised you are so gobsmacked over people judeging other people by how they dress.
    What is the “look” of hip-hop? Are there a WHOLE LOT of white or asian, or american indian, three-piece suit wearing, with no tats, whose lyrics promote respecting the cops, and moderation in drinking and lifestyle etc hip-hop artists represented by your firm?
    Are there exceptions? Sure–but by and large hip-hop is judged by “looks” just like pretty much everything else.
    You don’t have the right “look” or the “correct” cred—you by and large don’t get a chance to earn Jay-Z’s bank.
    I also find the repeated “Jay-Z’s the greatest artist ever!!!!” comments to be more fan-boy than accurate. Which makes, IMO, the whole line of reasoning suspect. The true test of artistic greatness is time. Not flash-in-the-pan popularity. Lets talk in 30 years and see if Jay-Z is anything more than a name in some book. There are any number of once wildly popular and once important rap and hip-hop pioneers that are little recalled–despite their talent and artistic skill.
    Part of the “outrage” you claim might just be because of the straw-men you create.
    “Conservatives have little understanding of what hip-hop is.” How coud you possibly know that??? You might well feel its true–but the fact is you simply have no clue what roughly half of a country of 300 million plus people “understand” or not.
    “Worse they condemn it without knowing anything about it.” Again, given the popularity of hip-hop the way I read the majority of comments is that people “know” all to well exactly what they are condemining. You are fee to disagree but many of the comments read to me like a person that listens to it and had decided they dont like the message.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    I have more trouble with the word h*e*l*l and I don’t even use it in a bad context. I swear this website is becoming untenable. How is it such a bad word?

  • ObamaYoMoma

    Conservative tent? That sounds eerily like Karl Rove, GWB, Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, John Boehner, Erick Cantor, Mitch McConnell, and their ilk that don’t have a conservative bone between them. Sure let’s expand the conservative tent by abandoning traditional American values and embracing new Marxist utopian ones like big statist government, diversity, gay marriage, amnesty for illegals, abortions on demand, etc, etc., etc. ad nauseum. That’ll expand our tent all right. Yeah right….let’s fundamentally transform the Republican Party at the same time.

    In any event, it’ doesn’t really matter to me in the least because as for as I’m concerned the Republican Party can go to heck as its tent has already been expanded far too much for me. It will be a cold day in heck before I ever vote for another Republican turncoat.

    At CPAC this month, former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie, who is running for Senate in Virginia, spoke of the need to reach out to minorities and other groups instead of letting the left “fill that vacuum.”

    Ed Gillespie? Ed Gillespie is a Karl Rove acolyte who served in the GWB administration, which grew the size, scope, and power of the federal government like a Dhimmicrat on steroids, at the same time it brought us the two biggest strategic blunders ever in Iraq and Afghanistan in American history. The writer is actually using Ed Gillespie as a paramour of virtue in the conservative movement to try to appeal to real conservatives? Am I reading him right? He has obviously been hanging around Karl Rove for too long!

    Indeed, this guy needs to get out of here and go back to licking Karl Rove’s backside!

    When we conservatives proclaim our desire to be inclusive, how can we have so little tolerance and understanding of a phenomenon as popular and American as hip-hop?

    Excuse me, but quit bastardizing the word conservative, because like Karl Rove and his ilk, you don’t have a conservative bone in your mentally handicapped body!

    Someone please use common sense and please stop censuring the word I substituted the word heck for because it isn’t even a bad word. The banning of that one word has caused me so many problems on this website that I’m about to give up trying to post. It’s is utterly absurd that they would censure that word.

    • SF Gal

      I have to ask: What precisely is the definition of Republican Conservative? I just want to understand from what ideology your comments are based upon.

      • ObamaYoMoma

        I don’t know. The word conservative has been bastardized so much over the past few years that it can mean anything and everything today depending upon who happens to be using it. All I know is the Republican Party isn’t conservative in the strictest sense of the word as it has been hijacked and co-opted like everything else by the Marxist totalitarian left.

        As a matter of fact, both major political parties today in America, for all intents and purposes, are two sides of the same Marxist totalitarian coin. Indeed, they are both pro-big statist government and they are both pro mass Muslim immigration with all of its excess baggage that is really non-violent stealth and deceptive jihad for the strategic purpose of mass Muslim infiltration and demographic conquest. It’s like they are both competing against each other to see which one of the two can manage to destroy America faster.

      • NAHALKIDES

        I spent some time trying to define Conservative in the modern, American sense myself. The result is here: What Is Conservatism?

        — N.A.Halkides, StubbornThings.org

  • Tim N

    I hear you knocking but you can’t come in.
    I remember walking with my (then) 5 year old son through a parking lot. Some idiot had his stereo blasting and every other word was MF.
    Thanks a lot

  • TL2014

    Drivel, all of it!
    Hip hop is a product of a very specific subculture in this country.

    A subculture that originated within a certain racial group and then spread around. A subculture that has very little positive about it, that celebrates Attitude with a capital /a/, bombast, and entitlement. An attitude that you don’t need to adapt to the majority culture but it needs to adapt (that is, stoop down) to you and your level.

    When are you going to get this into your heads, conservatives: some segments of the population will never be reached by your message of self-reliance and limited government. Hip hop or not. Just because there are other cultural movements that are reprehensible doesn’t make hip hop any better, so the author’s complaint that hip hop is being “singled out” is irrelevant and nonsensical.

    Very disappointing.

  • Whiteynoway

    Hillary Clinton will be president – or another democrat will be. I always vote for the DNC – and love visiting sites like this to see why we will be in power for the next 100 years. Welcome to the new bi-racial America. please keep flying your confederate flags.

    • NAHALKIDES

      You won’t be in power for the next 100 years – we’ll either beat you in an election and begin taking this country back, or you’ll win elections until you cause the country to collapse, just as you did to Detroit, say after 20 years, and then we’ll take over.

    • iluvisrael

      what will you do when the welfare and food stamp money is gone???

    • cxt

      Whiteynoway
      Hmmm. highly offensive post?. Check
      Highly offensive “screen name?” Check
      Nothing of value to add to the discussion? Check
      “I always vote DNC.” Check ;)

    • macktoid

      No, We fly American flags…You should take down your Black Nationalist flag, and hoist Old Glory, to meet us halfway.

    • UCSPanther

      Arrogance will be your downfall one way or another.

      You ain’t gonna get your forty acres and a mule.

    • Martel

      You are being harsh, many of the gullible conservatives on this blog seriously believe they will get 96% of the black vote one day. They are hoping for that multicultural rainbow because they believe blacks will suddenly share European values. Their leadership is the same, they would do anything, including passing amnesty which would wreck white america, to bring over a few minorities to the Republican side.

      It will never happen.

  • Craig S. Maxwell

    Geoffrey and NAHALKIDES are exactly right. Using decidedly ignoble means–garbage, really–on behalf of noble ends soils conservative principles. Why do it? We’ll never out-“cool” the left–that’s their specialty; pure fashion, all style, no substance. We can do better, and have so much more to offer. Forget the sub-mental inner-city filth. That’s the left’s domain.

  • Habbgun

    O’Reilly is a man who makes a living by being tough on actors and musicians but soft on politicians. He always will “try to understand both sides” when a politician is talking on his show but he’ll happily bash and say we can’t tolerate such and such celebrity. He’s a clown. I can ignore Miley Cyrus. I know I can because I’ve done it (actually I did a pretty good job of it today). I can not ignore Obamacare so from O’Reilly I get nothing.

    With that said. What would it mean to embrace hip-hop??? Dog and pony celebrity slop for low information voters?? How much do we want from Jay-Z. He did a great job promoting the Brooklyn Nets. Do we want him making political ads? Giving advice?? Determining policy?? I have heard the term South Park conservative but South Park is conservative in many ways and skewers leftist stupidity. We still don’t try to put South inside some phony for the media coalition.

    I see the point. The Tea Party needs more youth. Guess what?? You can get more youth. You recruit them. By the time you think you have a cultural hook for the young they’ve moved on anyway. We don’t need Hip Hop. We need to outreach to the young that have gotten seriously, seriously screwed!!!

  • http://www.clarespark.com/ Clare Spark

    Unbelievable the number of comments and the anger expressed by both sides, almost all males. These two blogs by the PR guy inspired a new blog on role models and more: http://clarespark.com/2014/03/20/role-models-talcott-parsons-and-structural-functionalism/. We are so confused by the authoritarian liberals.

  • Undezog

    Crap/rap is not music. That this garbage is embraced by a lot of people shows that our culture is in the toilet. Just because something that doesn’t even approach the level of mediocrity is embraced by a lot of idiots doesn’t mean that we have to do this excrement, too. Negative campaigning works as the Democrats have shown. Arthur Rubenstein said that culturally, morally, spiritually, the world is at its lowest point he had ever seen it. He said that just before he died in the early 80s. It is even worse today.

  • Undezog

    Incidentally, this talk about Jay being a family man…. I guess that sex tape replete with dangerous pracitces with super slut, Kim Kardashian, is an example of a “family virtue.” Mark Zuckerberg is also an example of the intellectual and cultural decline of America. Intellectual sites such as “Frontpage” should be one of the most popular sites — not social media sites that bring the Muslim Brotherhood to power in the mideast. If one wants some real music, listen to Ben Shapiro in his younger days.

  • Long shanks

    The author’s bio tells me everything I need to know. The man is a nut. Nuff said.

  • Fudge

    No. (C)rap has no value at all and is destructive to the entire human race.

  • liz

    Who said people who like hip hop can’t be conservative or vote republican or whatever? It’s a free country, nobodies stopping them.
    You seem to think all conservatives must force themselves to listen to and like this stuff in order for those who do like it to enter our “tent”.
    Why not let the hip hop crowd grow up and educate themselves on the real issues and vote accordingly, and let everyone else do the same?
    Why does everyone else have to be responsible for their choices?

  • geoffrey

    Here are just two of the many reasons why I as a conservative do not listen to hip-hop “music” or allow it in my home:
    1) When the singer of a rock/pop band, which does not “cross racial and demographic boundaries”, wishes to declare his romantic interests in a woman, he simply sings: “I want to hold your hand” whereas a hip-hop “artist” boasts: ” She Lick me like a Lollipop”.
    2)While most members of the pop/rock bands, which do not “cross racial and demographic boundaries”, are busy handling their microphones and musical instruments while performing onstage, many hip-hop “artists” are busy handling their private parts.
    Therefore, Mr. “White, 39 year-old PR Firm Owner”, please do forgive me for not having the desire to “cross racial and demographic boundaries”.

  • The Facts

    Bwahahaha. Jay-Z is nowhere near the greatest rapper alive. The greatest rappers alive are mostly Five Percenters.

  • VLParker

    Jay-Z is one of the greatest artists of all time? So he can read the poems off the walls in public restrooms to a beat. Yeah, he’s a regular Beethoven. You are really funny, Ronn.
    As for this nonsense about the Republicans needing to be all inclusive, we are all inclusive. We welcome conservatives from any race, gender or ethnicity. What we are not going to do is dilute our conservatism by welcoming a bunch of liberals or moderates into the party.
    Romney lost because conservatives stayed home. We had no one to vote for. Give us a conservative candidate and the conservative voters of all races will come out in droves. Keep giving us milquetoast candidates and the Republicans will continue to lose.

    • Michael A

      Rolling Stone said he was one of the greatest artists of all time. So did MTV. the KKK magazines you read didn’t.

  • Martel

    You will never get the minority vote without completely selling out white voters, which the GOP is currently doing trying to protect at least some white conservative values in the process.Keep dreaming about a successful multi ethnic society, it has never worked elsewhere, but if only we try real hard!

  • laura r

    ronn, hes the top “SELLING” rapper of all times. a far cry from nortorious big w/words, beats, sync, meanings, & music. biggy was the allen ginsburg of the crack generation. i first discoved biggy in 2009- (“requiem”), my breath almost stopped. musically, poetry, & i related to everything he said. then i was lucky as i found the best of the best. tupac, nars ect. jay is knocking stuff out so fast that its hard on the ears. its not soul, its not spoken word. when hes good hes good, but he lost his edge. i discovered him after the other 3. dont confuse sales w/consistant quality. lil kim is a real rapper, missy elliot is a real rapper. flatbush project can spit. yes hes a good business man. hes the “madonna” of the black music business. medicore, but commericial.

  • Boston Poverty Law

    I have in the past tried to explain here that the same Black street culture and attitude that the government fights against using police and prison could be the thing that saves our streets from turning into the sharia hell holes we are told here is going on in Europe. I am not trying to change you. (I personally love the wild black street in our cities and miss the 1980s before yet even more government crackdown.) I am just asking you to stay aware, always seeing new social developments, and be flexible and be ready be able to make such a major political shift if you ever have to. I think we could just ease up on prisons and let the Black dudes out onto the street and there will be no sharia. Ok maybe a little sharia in the winter months up north here in Boston but I don’t think that will be much different from what we have now. If you went back in time 40 to 60 years and tried to convince people that fundamentalist Christians from all over the South could in the near future be Staunch supporters of Israel people would think you’re insane.

  • TrueNorth777

    “Where is the Love” ~ Black Eyed Peas. Will Smith’s “Summertime” and warm hearted “Parents Just Don’t Understand”. Then, let’s not forget Ylvis, “What Does the Fox Say”. (Stay with me, folks.) The question I have is why does the author appear to be creating / fuelling yet another cultural barrier to divide races or political parties? Music has and always will cross cultural barriers. As with the examples above, there are quite a few great rap artists who articulate very inspirational messages. – no vulgarity required. What parent wouldn’t rather hear their children singing Where is the Love, Summertime or What Does the Fox Say, then rapping to lyrics talking about violent sex, guns and shooting up. Conservative, liberal, black, white, red…..we all want the same for our children and future generations….artists have power – shine a light instead of spreading darkness, give our children music of happiness, hope and love ~ because from this old timer’s perspective, strife-hate is pervasive every where we turn today…..what a world for a child to grow up in. Be a channel of hope for our youngest…artists, rise above the current trend to outdo one another with stage theatrics and vulgar lyrics. As the song goes, “We only got one world.” It is our children who will inherit it.

  • Yossi a

    Thank you Mr. Torossian for recognizing something countless few do in the GOP.

    • CapitalistPig

      But we do recognize it. That’s the point of disagreement. I’ve heard this, I’m not going to deny the simple reality of what is hitting my 2 ears. It isn’t like I’m getting this second hand.
      I’m sure you can find 2% here, 5% there that might be construed as “uplifting & positive”.
      But it’s like putting a spoonful of brownie mix in your stool & baking it—sorry, I’m still not eating it.

  • Air4099

    JZ Is just a black racist who is pushing obama’s commie racist agenda

    • Martel

      His videos feature pictures of Mao Zedong.

  • semby

    Unbelievable article from FP; can’t believe this was written.
    The writer totally misses the point.
    Needs to fired.

  • seewithyourowneyes

    This article is written by a public relations guy. Conflict of interest, anyone?
    Jay-Z admits to having stabbed his own brother at age 12 because his brother took some of Jay-Z’s jewelry. Jay-Z is unrepentant about having sold crack for a living. Jay-Z took a plea deal for charges of having stabbed Lance Rivera at an album release party in 1999. Jay-Z’s song “Big Pimpin” celebrates the beating, rape and general degradation of women. Jay-Z collaborates with Snoop Dogg, whose song “Ain’t No Fun (Unless the Homies Get Some)” is known as the gang rape anthem.

  • El Desdichado

    “Conservatives should spend more time listening to hip-hop and making an effort to understand urban culture.”

    Absolutely hilarious !
    I’m almost as interested in urban culture as the those urban hip-hoppers are in reading some 17th Century English poetry and listening to Handel…

  • Hawkins1701

    Well, for starts, I for one do quite enjoy me some hip-hop. Dr. Dre’s 2001 is a seminal, essential album for the ages. Just recently, I wanted to add more contemporary hip-hop jams to my collection, so I fired up iTunes and started listening for some cool beats.

    On the one hand, I agree with O’Reilly’s basic point that the culture is too over-sexualized, and that songs like Beyonce’s discussing fellatio in the backseat of a limo certainly play into that. It’s a real eye opener when one sees ten year olds bumping and grinding, and doing the freak dancing.

    On the other hand….it’s silly to single out Beyonce. She’s catering to what sells, and as the author mentions, she’s hardly the only one to discuss pushing the sexual boundary, now or in the past two decades. I’m less concerned with even her lyrics, and more annoyed that one can’t watch musical performances nowadays without vajajays practically hanging out. (This past Super Bowl’s halftime show I appreciated precisely because it wasn’t that. It was solid musicians performing a set that easily could have happened in Motown in the 60s.)

    Where all this is headed, I don’t know, but methinks the following: 1) The issues are far broader in society than just what musical artist X is doing. What they do or don’t do wouldn’t be issues at all without the breakdown of the traditional family (especially in the inner cities), and the breakdown of positive role models and influences thereto. 2) This being the case, the question then becomes how to halt said breakdown, and do so without calling for more government (as we’ve seen, government exacerbates the problem).

    Conservatives aren’t going to win a whole lot of points by going out of our way to demonstrate that we’re “down” with pop culture (not that O’Reilly is actually a conservative, but it matters only that people consider him to be one)….but it doesn’t help either if we’re portraying ourselves as the dreaded curmudgeonly “out of touch” old guys, telling the kids to get off our lawns.

    There’s not much to gain either way by focusing on popular music as a quantifiable good or bad in society. Best instead to stay focused on the underlying fundamental issues at hand and let the rest be background noise.

  • wingots

    Summary of comments: All white people who cant stand hiphop and are middle aged are telling someone who influences media daily and owns a major PR firm what influences people today. Funny.

  • Mark Duran

    Beyond Bill O’Reilly’s comments where is the Right attacking hip-hop? I don’t see it. I don’t think Bill O’Reilly speaks for all conservatives. You were right to ding him on his Jay-Z remarks, but your arguments to him don’t extend to conservatives as a whole. I’m not seeing evidence to support your assertion that conservatives as a whole unfairly reject hip-hop.

    When the artist Kid Cudi rejects negativity in hip hop, is he being unfair? Is he not showing proper deference to hip-hop? Is he alienating people that appreciate the art form? I don’t think he is. From what I’ve seen, conservatives aren’t doing anything different. They reject the negativity. I don’t recall ever seeing a conservative complain about hip hop for any other reason. The message that it is not all negative is a good one, because that’s true. We should support artists like Kid Cudi, for example, who care about the impact their words have on young people.

    I think that we can help emphasize what’s good in hip hop. If you were to, for example, interview a positive role model like a Kid Cudi, I think you’d find that Frontpage readers would be unanimously supportive.

    I’m not sure why you’re so intent to malign us as a group in this piece.

  • Sharps Rifle

    http://nypost.com/2014/04/06/jay-zs-medallion-bears-logo-of-five-percent-radical-group/
    Yeah. Real respectable. If this guy were White, he’d be wearing a sheet.

  • NAHALKIDES

    No one who refers to the heartland of this nation as “flyover country” – twice – deserves to be taken seriously. You are obviously a person of the Left, and as such have nothing to add to this discussion.

  • NAHALKIDES

    B.S. – I gave you several defining characteristics of music and showed that hip-hop lacks them. What part of “no melody and no harmony” do you not understand? You’re basically one of those pseudo-intellectual philosophy professors who spend their days telling us we can’t know anything, and red might really be blue for all we know. You’ve nothing of value to add here, so why don’t you just get lost?

  • truebearing

    You wouldn’t recognize an objective baseline if it tattooed itself on your forehead and locked you in a room of mirrors.

  • SoCalMike

    I couldn’t have said it better in English, Chinese, Cantonese, Japanese, Spanish, French, Italian, Thai or Vietnamese or Taiwanese or Chou Zhou.
    Nahalkides gets it. Aemoreira81 does NOT.

  • Sharps Rifle

    A great explanation, but don’t bother feeding moreira, though…I’ve seen him on other Conservative sites, and he’s just a troll. A bit less disruptive than some, but still he’s just an Obamabot troll.

  • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

    Those characteristics are arbitrary. The only objective definition is the dictionary.

    What part of “no melody and no harmony” do you not understand?

    That they are not part of the Merriam-Webster definition of music…you know, the objective definition.

  • truebearing

    He’s already lost. I just wish he would be lost somewhere else.

  • TL2014

    What’s a “Moran”?

  • NAHALKIDES

    :)

  • NAHALKIDES

    Thanks for the warning. I don’t think I’d run into him before.

  • NAHALKIDES

    Apparently, an Irish aesthete.

  • truebearing

    Then listen to your dictionary..

  • laura r

    i do, i say flyover. was it my comment that was deleted?