Letter to the Editor: What are We Listening To?
This last week I visited the Desert Wave Pool in Price. As part of celebrating International Days, Price City and the Wave Pool sponsored a Free Swim Day. This was a great idea which besides letting people in for free, included activities such as belly-flop and cannonball contests, a dance competition, and a free raffle where prizes were given away.
Through all of this fun and excitement, it was hard to find something wrong. But there was something very disturbing that day. Over the loud speakers placed on the side of the pool blared this loud, obnoxious, noise commonly known as rap music.
Rap music has become a popular genre of music for today's society. I must be missing something, but I cannot see why anyone would be interested in listening to something that swears nearly every line and contains such disgusting and atrocious lyrics. It was therefore even more astonishing to me that it was being allowed to play at what should have been a safe, family, event. It was completely inappropriate, and though it may not have been noticed by everyone there, it soon began to create problems for parents with their younger kids.
For example, as I stood in the shallow end of the pool, I heard a young girl who was no older than 5 years old ask her mom "What does that (the F word) word mean?" Not long after that, a boy about the same age asked who I assumed to be his grandma "What is a B_ _ _ _ ?" I am not exaggerating here.
These and other innocent kids were being exposed to something that they didn't deserve to hear. It's something that no one needs to hear. And it was booming from the loud speakers overlooking the pool.
What has happened to the days when a man would be arrested and severely punished for using profanity in the presence of a woman? Nowadays it has become almost common speech which is tossed around casually, no matter who is around or who is being spoken to. Its presence has invaded our schools, our communities, and in some unfortunate cases, our homes. I think a large amount of the blame for this can be placed on the kind of music that is being listened to today. What one listens to will stick in his/her head until he/she begins to think about those words and phrases in their own mind. The more one starts to think about it, the more they will actually start using these words out loud.
At the pool, I asked a lifeguard in the water why this music was being played. "It's what teenagers like to listen to," he replied mockingly. Well, if that's the case then I am embarrassed to be a teenager.
Fortunately, though, that is not the case. Many people do not like rap music, but it is obvious that it is starting to create problems. Now I am not saying that those who listen to rap are bad people. In fact, I have very close friends that enjoy rap, but they also respect myself and others by not listening to or playing it at times when it would be inappropriate. I appreciate that and respect their opinions. The problem occurs, however, when this music is played in public, or when someone constantly swears in front of people that do not wish to hear it. This problem is starting to become more widespread and is showing no signs of slowing down. I personally believe that when a problem like this is occurring, those people who have the ability to take action have the responsibility to take action as well.
I was disappointed that this music was allowed to be played at this kind of function, but I was even more ashamed that no one, including myself, did anything to stop it. We as a society need to prevent these kind of things from happening in public. I applaud those who do not stand for this behavior at any time and I encourage everyone to try and make a difference, whether it be school, work, or just on the streets. Taking action is as simple as one person having the guts to say, "Stop." And usually that is all it takes.
Let's try and show some courage and stop this before it gets worse. It's our responsibility.