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This Paper Is About The Issue Of Rights In The Topic Of Censorship In Music.

1463 words - 6 pages

"Each individual has the fundamental right, guaranteed under the constitution, to read (and by extension, to listen to) what he or she chooses" - A. EaglenThe issue of rights is something that is bound to come up when anyone thinks of mentioning censorship, especially in music. There are many different groups of people that these musical artists are attempting to reach. This makes the issue of censorship a controversy because the audience has mixed opinions. Some say, including the artist, that censoring music directly infringes on their first amendment right of free speech. Some others, being on the other extreme of the issue, claim that these vulgar and explicit lyrics have no place being heard by the ears of America. These two groups each envision the world in different ways. The anti-censorship group, or the liberals, envisions a world where everyone can speak their mind freely at any given time through any given medium, in this case, music. The other group, which we will call the censors, sees the world as a place where people should live their everyday life without having to themselves, or their loved ones, be influenced by any vulgar of explicit content. One thing that can be determined in this issue of censorship in music is that rights are the central issue. These two opposing groups with different values tackle the issue of censorship in music either as art or as a major problem in poorly influencing the minds of America.The censors blame explicit artists such as Eminem for setting a bad example for his main demographic, young adults. They believe, by censoring vulgar lyrics that the youth will not get any violent ideas into their heads and everything will just be dandy. A key player on the side of the censors is Tipper Gore, wife of former vice-president Al Gore. She and a group of her colleagues have formed a group called the Parents Music Resource Center in order to ensure that all explicit material that "might conceivably offend the sensibilities of some adults" is labeled with a bright yellow, "Explicit Lyrics-Parental Advisory" sticker. She even goes as far as to forbid the sale of any album containing explicit material that does not bear the sticker. The government's own definition of "explicit material" are "lyrics advocating one or more of the following: suicide, incest, bestiality, sadomasochism, sexual activity in a violent context, murder, morbid violence, illegal use of drugs or alcohol."(Eaglen. A, 1) Tipper's main goal by ridding music of that kind of offensive material is to be a supposed guardian of the morals of America. The world she envisions is a world where parents do not have to worry about what their kids will be listening to. A world where kids will not look up to bad boy Eminem as a role model and go out and slap a woman and beat up a homosexual. Cathy Renna of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Aginst Defamation states her view on the matter."I think it's pretty clear that someone who is perceived as a role model by...

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