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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at JMU chapter.

Disclaimer: the article below contains lyrics that are very graphic, offensive, and honestly disgusting. Read at your own discretion.

Whenever I play the radio or go to a party and listen to the songs they’re playing, I always think: “What the hell has happened to music nowadays?”

We as a society went from having the top songs on the radio being beautiful love songs such as “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White T’s, “Nothin’ on You” by B.o.B ft. Bruno Mars, “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz, “She Will Be Loved” by Maroon 5, and “Just The Way You Are” by Bruno Mars (notice how all of these songs are by men), to having the most frequently played songs nowadays being songs that over-sexualize women and glorify treating them like garbage.

One of the most popular songs that I tend to hear all over TikTok and at every single party I go to is “Carnival“, by ¥$, Kanye West, Ty Dolla $ign and Rich The Kid. I actually feel like I’m one of the few people that hates this song, simply because the lyrics are so demeaning, and they heavily promote the objectification of women. Specific lyrics that come to mind are “She ride the d*ck like a carnival / Bend her over, havin’ flashbacks, she gon’ eat me up like a carnivore”, “I’m ’bout to nut on her body and tell the hoe leave, ‘kay'”, and “She gon’ take it up the ass like a ventriloquist”.

I genuinely don’t understand how we as a society have normalized songs that degrade women to such an extreme extent. So many young audiences listen to these songs, especially as they go viral on social media, and we shouldn’t be promoting this behavior to such a naïve audience and allow them to think that this is how women should be spoken about. It is honestly so disgusting and while I wish I could say that this is the only song that’s like that, this unfortunately isn’t the truth.

The #1 song on the BillBoard Top 100 for this week (or at least for the week I’m writing this article) is “Like That”, by Future, Metro Boomin, and Kendrick Lamar. I went to look up these lyrics, and while I definitely wasn’t surprised, I was for sure disappointed. Even the first verse immediately dives into the objectification of women, with Future saying “I put it in her nose, it’s gon’ make her p*ssy leak”, later followed by “She think ’cause she exotic b*tch, she attractive” and “I put her on the gang, she get f*cked for a chain / Got your girl in this b*tch, she twirlin’ on this d*ck”

It is honestly so disappointing having this song be the most listened to song of the week. It makes me miss those beautiful, yet catchy, love songs that I feel like genuinely don’t exist anymore.

What inspired this article was an interaction I had with my friend actually. I got into his car to go grab lunch as he was blasting a song I’d never heard before: BACK TO ME by ¥$, Kanye West, and Ty Dolla $ign. As I was listening to the lyrics, the line “Beautiful, naked, big-t*tty women just don’t fall out the sky, you know?” is repeated several, several times throughout this song, and genuinely caught me so off-guard. The third verse, while very similar, was even more disrespectful, saying “Beautiful big t*tty, butt-naked b*tches, where you at?”. The normalization of calling women “bitches” is something I so truly hate about society, because it’s just a word that I find genuinely so disrespectful.

Referring to women as “bitches” is something that has become so frequent in society, and part of me is convinced that it’s due to these celebrities and rappers constantly calling women “bitches” in their songs. Although these lyrics may be referencing a movie, it still made me come to the realization of how many songs objectify women and their bodies.

While it’s mainly rap songs that tend to degrade women, it saddens me that rap songs haven’t always been like this. I was talking to my friend about this in the car, and he said that Kanye’s music didn’t always used to sexualize women as frequently as it did, but that he used to make inspirational songs, such as “Stronger”, one of Kanye’s most popular songs. This song, with lyrics such as “Now that that don’t kill me / Can only make me stronger” and “Work it harder, make it better / Do it faster, makes us stronger” are songs that should be reinforced in society, rather than songs that degrade women and comment on their bodies.

I’ve honestly noticed that a lot of Kanye’s recent songs promote the objectification of women, including his new single, “VULTURES”, by ¥$, Kanye West, and Ty Dolla $ign. “How I’m anti-Semitic? I just f*cked a Jewish b*tch / I just fucked Scooter’s b*tch and we ran her like Olympics / Got pregnant in the threesome, so whose baby is it?” These lyrics had me absolutely flabbergasted, especially Kanye’s comment denying his anti-semitism that he has undeniably made public. I cannot fathom why calling women “bitches” has become so normalized, and why celebrities are praised for objectifying and demeaning women.

Although I know I’ve mentioned Kanye several times, it isn’t just him that writes songs like these. Future also has the tendency to write misogynistic songs that objectify women, such as one of his newer songs, “Type Shit”, by Future, Metro Boomin, Travis Scott, and Playboi Carti. The lyrics that stand out to me the most are “B*tch give me dome in the back, she on her bobblehead type sh*t / All I want is ass and t*tties, I ain’t got no type, sh*t”.

While there definitely are some love songs written by men out there, such as “Dial Drunk” by Noah Kahan, “Vacation Eyes” by Jonas Brothers, and “Smaller Acts” by Zach Bryan, the songs that are currently trending in society have become plagued by disgusting lyrics promoting the objectification of women.

We went from listening to beautiful love songs with lyrics such as “A thousand miles seems pretty far / But they’ve got planes and trains and cars / I’d walk to you if I had no other way / Our friends would all make fun of us / And we’ll just laugh along because we know / That none of them have felt this way” (Hey There Delilah by Plain White T’s) and “Oh, her eyes, her eyes / Make the stars look like they’re not shinin’ / Her hair, her hair / Falls perfectly without her tryin / She’s so beautiful and I tell her everyday” (Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars), to the top songs on the radio promoting the objectification of women with lyrics that I can’t even repeat out loud, such as “Ain’t no time for a whack b*tch, unless the mouth sick / Face down in the mattress, make that back dip / Make her f*ck like an actress in a porno flick” (Château Gris by $UICIDEBOY$) and “F*ckin’ on this b*tch, she suckin d*ck, she like a mannequin” (Hëavyweight by Yeat).

Today’s trending music does nothing but promote the objectification and sexualization of women with its disgusting and offensive lyrics. I’m baffled that music like this is making the top charts despite the message it’s sending out to society, normalizing speaking down on women. It’s utterly disappointing the change that music has made, as rap music used to be motivational, but now strays to over-sexualize women to an extreme extent.

We as a society need to promote change for our future generations, as I genuinely can’t remember the last time a current love song went trending on social media but rather, all I see are people lip-syncing lyrics where every other word needs to be censored. With the way that music is going right now, it feels as though Kidz Bop won’t have any songs left to cover. Today’s trending music does nothing but promote the objectification of women with its disgusting and offensive lyrics. I’m baffled that music like this is making the top charts despite the message it’s sending out to society, normalizing speaking down on women. It’s utterly disappointing the change that music has made, as rap music used to be motivational, but now strays to over-sexualize women to an extreme extent. It’s the job of our current generation to begin making these changes and to promote songs with positive messages, rather than songs that have lyrics so disgusting that I can’t even repeat them out loud. Would you listen to a song that you couldn’t even have your own mother listen to?

Emma is a third year at James Madison University with a major in elementary education. In her free time you'll usually find her cuddling her cat or listening to Olivia Rodrigo. She loves thrifting, hanging out with friends, and writing.