Researchers studied rap videos and found that they sexualized women, placed too much emphasis on their physical appearance and treated them more as decorative objects rather than "active agents." Uh, doesn't that hold true for most of pop culture and advertising? It's so annoying how rap and hip hop are always being called out for that, when there are plenty of equally (if not more) offensive other influences in the media. Anyway, after interviewing over 500 African-American women (ages 14-18), researchers found that the young women who spent more time watching rap videos were more likely to "binge drink, have sex with multiple partners, test positive for marijuana and have a negative body image." Is it just me, or does that just sound like the life of a majority of teen girls, regardless of race or music video preference? And sure, the negative body image stuff is always bad, but the rest of it actually sounds like tons of fun to me.
The researchers say that such behavior is influenced by rap videos and that the "glamorized depictions of alcohol use often portrayed in conjunction with sexual imagery and portrayals of drug use are often depicted as normal." Well, for some of us, it is. Especially when you're a teenager interested in experimentation. I don't necessarily believe such behavior — which the researchers labeled as "risky" — is always so bad. The study concluded that there is a "need for greater awareness and education about the risks associated with this media exposure. Maybe people need to stop worrying about sheltering girls and instead focus on teaching boys to start respecting them.