Friday, April 30, 2010


Picking sides, choosing labels, categorizing your persona. Easily one of the worst things to do to yourself.

I used to relish the thought of being definitively apart of one group; enjoying the fact that there could be comrades in my daily fight against whatever counter-culture I decided to hate. But somewhere down the line I realized that making an attempt to live up to a category only marginalizes who you are, your opportunities as a person, and makes you look like a divisive douchebag.

Picking a side places one lines between you and those who think in an opposite fashion, with the sides of the line being defined by the choice of label; for example, democrats vs. republicans.

But this is a generalization. One line is not what defines us; philosophically, we're more like a major grid, with intersections and quadrants where ideas, beliefs, and morals constantly intersect. While you may find yourself disagreeing with another over one issue, you can equally find yourself agreeing with that person on another issue.

Which is why I tightly grip my forehead at the thought of picking sides. It's like cheating on a jigsaw puzzle; finding satisfaction in having the big picture completed for you, all the while ignoring the significance of its countless pieces.

Going back to Democrats and Republicans, I find major irony in the way the sub-culture of the Democrats, the liberals, praises its chosen party so feverishly. Liberals are inherently very anal about their freedom; it's their fucking name. And yet, the Democrats are their party of choice. The Democrats. The group that embraces the power of the federal government and often chooses to expand its control over its citizens is the party of choice for the liberals.

Which is why picking a side inherently flaws us; liberals believe in things that the anti-government Republicans traditionally uphold, such as lower taxes and greater power to citizens and the free market. But because the entire US political atmosphere has chosen to draw a line between themselves and their chosen opponent, they ignore this, and would rather just ignorantly throw shit at each other like monkeys with blindfolds.

At a less serious level, hip-hop and rock have much to learn from one another. Though you're certain to find any school cafeteria segregated by sub-culture, the truth is both lack something the other has, and requires each others' understanding to work to its optimal potential. Rock has become very rigid rhythm-wise, and has little to no actual swagger anymore, instead relying on screams, angry yet immature lyrics, and loud power chords to suffice for its lack of actual style.

Hip-hop has become extremely shallow within the past few years however. It lacks passion, fury, and, as Bill O'Reilly-esque as I sound saying this, lyrically comes off degrading more often than not, both for the women it objectifies, and the rappers involved.

Rock however has that passion and emotional fury that hip-hop lacks. This way, the lyrics in hip-hop can have a poignant emotional impact and aren't entirely about which bitch you fucked the night before.

And hip-hop has the swagger and lyrical prowess that rock needs. Because four white guys wearing the flanals they brought from Target 2 years ago while stiffly strumming their guitar, yelling "I DON'T LIKE YOU" on stage is boring as shit. And sure, hip-hop lyrics can be equally as shallow content-wise, but they're certainly much more clever than the "I hate myself" lyrics that every other band spits out. And musically, rock lacks the hypnotic and catchy grooves hip-hop can sometimes be quite masterful at.

But ultimately the two will always choose to repulse one another.

...Okay so I still wanna bottle Drake at a concert.

Nevertheless; unity is a greater force for production than division has ever been. Wish we could be more prone to the former than the latter.

1 comment:

  1. Very insightful, I used to wish I could catagorize myself but now I'm just a crazy mesh of different things I like. Some rappers are bringing it back though. Lupe Fiasco <3