Labeling Our Minds Essay

1361 words - 5 pages

Labeling Our Minds Our country was founded on some specific principles. We are granted the freedom of speech and expression. However, the music industry's rights seem to be frequently compromised. Like any other media, music, in all of its forms, such as concerts, CDs, and various paraphernalia has been criticized by the government. The existence of advisory labels compromise the Artist's rights to free speech and expression, limit the Artist's profits and grants the government too much control over what we hear.The major leap in music restriction began in 1986 with the PMRC (Parent's Music Resource Center) hearings held by Tipper Gore (Buder 3). "Parents need to know more about the content of the music that their children are listening to." (Scott 9). The labels were at first voluntary. "We don't want you to have to ask Big Brother if its okay what we listen to." Tipper Gore stated (Buder 7).If an album contains "explicit content", it is nearly impossible to find a company to produce the music without the application of a warning label (McCaffe 5). Over 120 of the world's leading music companies in the world including Virgin require the application of a warning label on albums with explicit language or explicit cover art (McArthur 190). Coffey 2 However, if the Artist chooses to re-design their cover-Art, it can cost near 10,000 per 1,000 CDs changed. (Buder 10). Also, if Artists do manage to get a label, finding a market for their music will be difficult. Wal-Mart, the largest music retailer in the world, does not sell any albums with an advisory labels on the cover (Enon 1).This effectively proves that to survive as a musician, the music labels are not voluntary. Therefore, the rights to musician's profits are impaired. Without an equal opportunity to attain money like everyone else, this is a direct violation of the Constitution. ""¦That no man shall have favor among the courts, nay, we shall all be equal" (Buder 7). Frequently, politicians that believe that we live in a society where anybody is wrong if so much as a whisper escapes their mouth that offends someone target bands such as Korn, The Indigo Girls, Prodigy, The Village People, and 2 Live Crew (McCaffe 4).A recent scandal in Atlanta, Georgia involved the Indigo Girls. The group was scheduled to perform at Lanesville High School. However, the school canceled the concert because of an offensive lyric in the song, "So Real". "Songs like this are completely inappropriate for a school environment" (Lester 9).However, when the Indigo Girls offered to omit this song and any others, the school officials and the city would not let the Indigo Girls perform. The scandal at hand was that the leaders did not want the high school to be exposed to the group because of the sexual preference of Sarah and Annie, two members of the band (Moore 9)."I certainly don't want...

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