For these artists women are nameless creatures that hey can have sex with; a woman’s identity is not relevant past her sexuality. While Royce uses derogatory words, it is Mine who picks up the torch and adds violence against women. He describes hitting women as well as threatens to decapitate a woman if she does not give him oral sex. These images are what make the artists opinion of women finite. Through use of their cover art, lyrics, actions and support of a negative misogynistic message, the artists were simply trying to push the envelope instead of attempting to make any breakthroughs in hip hop.
Mine and Reece’s consisting attitude does not further any artistic message about women, but instead it promotes the message that women are subservient to men and their wishes, and if they defy that role they can be subject to physical and sexual aggression. Amine’s admittance of his desire to hurt feelings shows why these men are willing to say such awful things about women. It is Mine, and Reece’s attitude towards controversy shed light on why they promote misogynistic message. The artist’s view of women is not new to the world of hip hop.
The debate between whether it is art or rash has been in the forefront of the hip hop revolution. Michele Wallace argues that “rap lyrics can be brutal, raw and, where women are the subject, glaringly sexist” (HER 131). It is no surprise that Mine, a man who admits, “as long as you have feelings to hurt I’ll be around”, would bring this sexist view of women to a darker place (BMW: Welcome 2 Hell). This album goes past the line of controversy and simply becomes an exploitation of negative, misogynistic attitudes. Women rarely argue against their treatment in hip hop songs so the men are able to get away with it.
The superiority that the men feel over the women stems from a silent community that does not want to question the masculinity of the men. The women in the black community are expected to not speak out against this type of assault. Rap is viewed as, “a youth rebellion against all attempts to control black masculinity, both in the streets and in the home” (HER 132). When women speak out against the misogyny in songs they are seen as attacking the men’s masculinity. Thus, men can say whatever they like about women and women are expected to keep their mouths closed.
This attitude comes through in the song The Reunion when Mine is addressing a woman he believes is speaking to him in the fashion she would speak to her husband he rebuts, “you talk to me like you talk to him I’ll buck you up”. This shows a tension that exists in the relationships of these men. The men aren’t afraid to make a woman do what they want by physically injuring them. Mine threatens the same woman with the line, “you goon’ need a stitch you keep acting’ like that” when she speaks back to his negative comments.
There is superiority that he feels over women that he eels allows him to be physically violent. The sexual violence in the songs promotes the message that women are sex objects that can be discarded whenever the user would like to. The physical violence reaches its peak when Mine threatens to decapitate a woman if she does not perform oral sex on him in the song Fastens. He raps that he would then use the head to perform oral sex on himself. This grueling image goes far beyond art into a sick, twisted, sexual fantasy. Here the woman’s life is not more important than his sexual desire.
Women are the object of sexual fantasies throughout music but the artists have pushed the envelope and brought it to an unhealthy place. Males dominate the world of hip hop and they are willing to say anything that they please. The cover art of the album supports the message that the world is a place of male dominion and that women hold no importance other than as sexual beings. There is a message of male dominance which is created by depicting the two artists sitting on speakers. Behind them is a ruined wasteland. Women are absent from the cover, as well as all other cover art.
In this male dominated album it is fitting that women would be completely absent from all cover art. To these men women are sexual tools that can be cast aside whenever the male pleases. Women hold no importance to Mine or Royce, which leads to the promotion of a negative message. These men do not care about the rights of women or freedom of speech. While they claim it is their right to say what they want, they also feel women should not do so. This hypocrisy is left alone because the black community does not want to question its young black males.
Throughout the entire album artwork women are entirely absent. The album art focuses on the sneering faces of Mine and Royce; who are promoting their own asexuality. The language that the artists use when describing women go beyond art and it becomes offensive to women. It is common in hip hop and other music styles to refer to women as batches. It has become so common that it is no longer surprising to hear both men and women using the word pitch in multiple scenarios. Mine and Royce use the term pitch multiple times throughout the songs but then they bring it a step further and use the word “count”.
The term pitch can be used by women to describe each other so it has multiple connotations. One can refer to her reined as a pitch without putting negative connotations upon her. Either that friend is close, “She’s my pitch” or to promote a strong feminine front. This is to say a woman referred to as a serious pitch is less likely to be confronted aggressively than one who does not have the title. While the term pitch has become common the term count is still highly derogatory even on the streets. It holds many negative connotations that women would not want to be associated with.
A word like count is said simply to hurt feelings, there is no redeeming the word through alternate connotations. The fact that this word shows up in the lyrics show that the men hold women in low regard. There is no other way to read the word when they say it. They make their view of women finite by using this word. Mine and Royce have a misogynistic view of women that perforates their album: Bad Meets Evil. The message comes across through the language and the cover art which depict male domination and a disrespect of women. More disturbing is the violent nature of the lyrics and their threat towards women.