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Apr 19 2012

“I don’t even CALL it rap music…”

I’ve been a hip-hop head since I was a little kid. I’m not sure what possessed my father to buy me my first album – Public Enemy’s Apocalypse ’91… the Enemy Strikes Black simply because I asked for it. I was 8 years old, and it took years of education for me to understand even half of the subject matter. Questionable parenting aside, I’ve always loved hip-hop. It wasn’t until my early 20s that I ‘rediscovered’ my love for the genre – an adolescence spent among friends who were almost exclusively rock fans limited my options a bit. As I’ve said elsewhere, I didn’t grow up surrounded by black folks, but listening to hip-hop was a way for me to connect to that part of my cultural heritage. Even though I didn’t fully ‘get’ all of the topics, I was able to glean an appreciation for issues that did not filter into the mainstream of discussion.

Now don’t get me wrong – there is a lot of awful hip-hop music out there. Even some of the stuff that gets lauded as ‘genius’ (I’m thinking specifically here of Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic” – I’ve tried liking this album; it sucks) is pretty bad. Some of this can be chalked up to personal taste – I’ve never found anything worthwhile in the materialistic top 40 stuff for the same reason I don’t bother listening to dance music – I find it repetitive and entirely disposable. Much of it can be chalked up to talent – a lot of so-called emcees should stay the fuck out of the booth until they learn to rhyme. There’s an aspect of exploitative marketing at work – since young white men are the largest consumers of hip-hop, labels prefer rappers that appeal to that demographic at the expense of better, more meaningful music.

Hip-hop is no better and no worse than other forms of music – there is a lot of really great stuff out there if you know where to look, but the majority of the market is schlock designed to turn a profit. Such is the consequence of for-profit art. No big deal, right? Well… maybe not exactly:

A landmark Pointe Claire Village bar that was forced to stop selling alcohol in January is expected to get back its liquor licence this week but on the condition that no hip-hop or rap bands play the bar in the future. Le Pionnier on Lakeshore Blvd. has been dry since the end of January, when the bar’s owners booked a local hip-hop band and the bar’s liquor permit was revoked by the Régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux.

On Monday, [new owner Diane] Marois said that she and her husband, Ron Bracken, were relieved that it appeared they would be back in business before long. Marois said she suspected gang-related activity was the reason for the condition imposed by the Régie but she couldn’t be certain. She said she had only talked on the telephone and communicated through emails with a lawyer in the Régie’s legal department and, had yet to receive a written agreement from the Régie.

Oh right I almost forgot – black people like hip-hop, so… better cut that shit out right away! Now, this is Canada, so we’re not going to see something as blatant as a “whites only” sign at a bar. No, instead it will be a “well-behaved negroes allowed” type of situation where racism is accompanied with a wink and a nod. The baffling thing to me is that this restriction came from a government agency rather than a bigoted bar owner deciding that they don’t want to cater to “the wrong type of people”. It should not be ignored that this is effectively bringing the force of law against an entirely legal activity (listening to a certain type of music) based on a wildly discriminatory belief about not only the content of the music, but the people who enjoy it.

While this sounds like I’m channeling the NRA when I say this, hip-hop music doesn’t kill people. While it is a convenient scapegoat for those who wish to bemoan the ‘moral decline’ of our society, or to ‘other’ an undesirable group (much in the same way rock ‘n’ roll was used for rebellious white youth 40 or so years ago), the fact is that hip-hop is a genre of music that is part of our culture and does not deserve to be singled out in this way. Hip-hop today is perhaps what jazz was back in my grandparents’ time – an entirely valid form of artistic expression that had some ‘unseemly’ associations, many of which were due to its status as “black people music” (although the term ‘black people’ was rarely used, in favour of something I’d prefer not to repeat). Was jazz associated with alcohol and promiscuity and bootlegging and all sorts of bad stuff? Yup – but that wasn’t because jazz is inherently evil – it’s because it was pushed to the margins of society.

Oh gee, isn’t that exactly what this decision does?

Apparently Pointe Claire Village is the town from Footloose, where decisions are made by small-minded ignoramuses. The sheer absurdity and blatant racism of this policy will likely give the town a lot more attention than they expected, and I imagine they will soon be shamed into doing the right thing.

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51 comments

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  1. 1
    timdiaz

    Yeah, this needs to stay in the public eye for certain. Let the trial by media begin!

  2. 2
    Desert Son, OM

    The parallel with jazz is apt in so many ways.

    So, in the spirit of counteraction to Pointe Claire Village officials, a selection of recommendations for interested readers/listeners:

    In addition to the aforementioned Apocalpyse ’91, I would add:

    Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai soundtrack, featuring extensive contributions by RZA, among others. I recommend the movie, too, and I find the soundtrack fantastic, full of depth, intricacy, beauty, and power.

    Risqué Rhythms: Nasty 50s R&B. I see this available on Amazon, don’t know if iTunes or similar outlets have it (I own it on CD). This is a collection of R & B (one of hip-hop’s ancestors) from the 1950s. This particular collection features numerous tunes that, at the time, white radio would not play because they were afraid that white kids would get into it and really enjoy it. And they were right. These tunes are sexy as hell, in both senses of the word. White Southern Baptists will be especially scandalized by this one, because in addition to all the sex in the music, the songs really make you want to dance!

    I’d love to hear additional recommendations from others.

    Turn it up! Bring the noise!

    Still learning,

    Robert

  3. 3
    jamessweet

    Was jazz associated with alcohol and promiscuity and bootlegging and all sorts of bad stuff?

    That all sounds like good stuff to me…

    (half-kidding regarding bootlegging, of course)

  4. 4
    Dalillama

    Oh, yeah, we get that all the time down here with the OLCC (Oregon Liquor Control Commission). They’ll deny liquor licenses to hip-hop clubs, bring the hammer down on existing hip-hop venues for the slightest complaint, and ignore all but the most egregious violations for most other types of venues. I’m not personally one who goes out to clubs much, but it’s yet another reason I loathe the OLCC.

  5. 5
    SallyStrange

    What if they promise to only play music by nice wholesome Canadian rappers like K-OS or Cadence Weapon?

  6. 6
    Leon

    I didn’t grow up surrounded by black folks, but listening to hip-hop was a way for me to connect to that part of my cultural heritage

    Hey, ever heard MC Hawking? “A Brief History of Rhyme” might appeal to your Inner Geek.

  7. 7
    Crommunist

    I have. I don’t particularly care for humour-based music. I find it irritating.

  8. 8
    garbledina

    What about Deltron 3030? Geeky, skilled (I love Del), and political. Plus Dan the Automator is a genius (IMHO).

  9. 9
    Crommunist

    A bit too surreal for me, but I loved his flows on the first Gorillaz record. My band actually performs ‘Clint Eastwood’ from time to time, with me on vocals.

  10. 10
    Leni

    I don’t know anything about Canadian law, but is this actually legal? Shouldn’t the owners be able to sue? (Not that they should have to… )

  11. 11
    Crommunist

    I don’t see how it would be illegal. They are making the license conditional on certain bar behaviour. It might not stand up in a Human Rights Tribunal if it gets that far, but I can’t imagine what kind of law it would violate (maybe free expression, but that’s pushing it).

  12. 12
    Zachariah

    This kind of thing is exactly the point of a binding bill of rights. Government agencies in the US are explicitly forbidden from using zoning ordinances to restrict fundamental rights. Policing music content would be a pretty clear cut violation of the 1st amendment. That hasn’t stopped local governments from trying, but at least they wouldn’t have a legal leg to stand on.

    It’s always concerned me how Canada and most of Europe seem to have such weak free speech protections. Free speech isn’t free unless the government is forbidden from punishing you in any way.

  13. 13
    Crommunist

    Yes, we all saw how free your speech was in NYC (and Oakland, and UC Davis, and, and, and) during Occupy…

  14. 14
    tariqata

    Zachariah: “people zoning” and similar uses of municipal zoning powers are generally* forbidden in Canada, too (although the Pointe Claire situation appears to be a ruling made by the Quebec liquor regulator, not a municipal zoning by-law, and I’m less familiar with the limits on their powers). Thinking back to some similar cases from my planning law class where local governments did try to use zoning powers to police the entertainment offered by bars, I very much doubt that it would stand up if it were challenged in court, but as in the US, I think it’s not uncommon for governments and government agencies to see what they can get away with.

    *I’m fairly sure that all jurisdictions in Canada explicitly forbid it, in keeping with case law as well as the constitution and Charter, but I’m studying planning in Ontario and my brief tour of the other provinces’ planning legislation was quite a while ago.

  15. 15
    kraut

    “Free speech isn’t free unless the government is forbidden from punishing you in any way.”

    Do you mean to say that government has no right to punish you for crimes committed? Because that is what you are saying.

    “It’s always concerned me how Canada and most of Europe seem to have such weak free speech protections.”

    I always find it curious and outright hypocritical that Americans specifically have such a strong opinion about the protection of free speech in Europe, conveniently forgetting that there is a historical background for punishing certain hate speech.

    And hypocritical because European countries in general do not have home land security acts that permit to throw anybody in prison without legal recourse who is for whatever reason considered a terrorist, do not usually maintain black ops prisons in foreign countries, and do not by law permit their army to kill or imprison citizens considered “terrorists” or suspects to commit terrorist acts.

  16. 16
    Dalillama

    Zachariah:
    As I noted above, exactly this happens right here in the U.S., which contains Oregon, where I live and where rap/hip-hop venues are routinely denied/deprived of their liquor licenses in circumstances where other types of venues are not. I have also seen reports of this occurring in NYC, Baltimore, and Chicago, and I don’t doubt that it happens in a lot of other places in the states where I haven’t looked into it.

  17. 17
    Robert B.

    It’s only hypocritical if the Americans in question approve of the human rights violations you mention. Which I don’t. How about you, Zach? You down with Gitmo?

    (Here in the US we’ve discovered, to our dismay, that democratic elections can still install leaders whose human rights crimes horrify anyone who’s paying attention to them and thinking clearly, which is fewer people than it ought to be. Once we had such a leader who lost the election but was put in charge of the country anyway; a rather regrettable war then ensued. Have you had that experience in your country also?)

  18. 18
    Zachariah

    Interesting, so basically local governments suck everywhere. It’s too bad we need zoning ordinances.

  19. 19
    Zachariah

    So the US, with our history of slavery and segregation, has no reason to ban hate speech? That’s a load of crap. People have tried to ban hate speech here, but thankfully they’ve failed. An for the record I haven’t ‘forgotten’ the history in Europe. Full disclosure: I’m ethnically Jewish, we talk about the whole holocaust thing just a little bit.

    Forcing people with bad ideas to hide them doesn’t get rid of the bad idea, it just makes them harder to oppose. Despite the fact that holocaust denial and hate speech is banned in much of Europe doesn’t actually stop people from having those opinions. They just graffiti them on the side of buildings (Personal experience in the Czech Republic and Poland).

    And I may as well respond to the charge of supporting the suspension of Habeas Corpus and indefinite detention: I don’t. I’m with a lot of people in thinking that expansion of power was a bad idea from both a legal and security standpoint. I understand the legal precedents that the courts use to not apply the constitution to those cases (constitution ends at the borders and all that), but it still came out to be a bad idea.

    But while we’re talking about hypocrisy, it’s more than a little hypocritical for European governments and diplomats to condemn American military and covert operations in north Africa and the middle east when EU member nations are the prime beneficiaries of those same actions. Why do you think it is that the combined military budget of the EU is only 1.6% of GDP? You guys just that enlightened? Why do you think the US joined military action in Libya? Hell, why does the US run the missile defense shield in Europe and why do we still have bases in eastern Europe?

    Personally I think the US should scale down global military operations and readiness as part of our general deficit reduction. That change wouldn’t happen in a vacuum though, and there are legitimate arguments that there could be repercussions for global peace and security. I’d like to see how German and Norwegian budgets would shift as that happened too.

    All of this is beside the main point of Ian’s original article: local governments suck and can be racist, even in Canada.

  20. 20
    robertbaden

    There was the same problem with One Step/Ragtime music and dance in the early 1900s.

  21. 21
    Cynthia

    Another brilliant post that informs me and makes me think of things I never considered.

    Well done!

  22. 22
    F [is for failure to emerge]

    My band actually performs ‘Clint Eastwood’ from time to time, with me on vocals.

    This I would love to hear.

  23. 23
    Crommunist

    I’ll see what I can do about getting you a video.

  24. 24
    Leni

    …but I can’t imagine what kind of law it would violate (maybe free expression, but that’s pushing it).

    Admittedly I have no idea what the Canadian version of free expression is. Or maybe even the American, for that matter.

    I’m just not sure how using the government to essentially restrict access to venues based on an entire genre of music (not even based on content!) could be consistent with any rational or fair interpretation of free speech, freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, or probably several other “standard” democratic principles. And laws. So I’m just surprised that the owners would have no legal recourse.

    Or maybe they just (understandably) declined to seek legal recourse because it’s easier to just not fight it.

    Or maybe I’m just totally naive lol. But it’s not about hate speech because they don’t seem to be banning the content of the music (i.e. lyrics), but rather a whole freaking genre that contains everything from children’s music to standard pop fare to songs about killing cops.

    It’s like Footloose. But without the angry Kevin Bacon dance to take the edge off.

  25. 25
    kraut

    My name indicates the country where I come from and where a leader elected with a minority of the popular vote was able to create a criminal government of suppression, violence and human rights abuses
    that has no equal throughout history.
    Maybe the leader of the golden Horde comes close..but records are spotty.
    From this history – of a party that could thrive and prosper and flourish despite the clear path laid out by its leader in a climate of free speech in the Weimar Republic – comes the conviction in Germany to criminalize any speech that supports the ideas of Nazi ideology and categorizes any attempt to verbally attack any vilify ethnic groups as hate speech.

    The promise of any Government that held power in Germany after WW2 was to never permit any attempts to justify or defend by word and deed the Nazi atrocities – and I think close to six million Jewish and non Jewish victims of concentration and death camps somewhat justify that stand, not to mention the millions of civilians having had to suffer loss of life, homes and countries.
    You might feel differently as Americans and Canadians – but I really question your ability to judge the policies of a country that had undergone a history of thirteen years of unfettered villainy.
    It is nice to talk as US and Canadian citizens who can pat themselves on the shoulders to so far have avoided a similar system of brutality and public madness, it looks very different from the point of a German who grew up in a Frankfurt where the ruins were still surrounding the apartment building he grew up in
    and where almost all families had at least one person killed during the war either during the bombing raids or in the “field”.

    No, I have absolutely no sympathy for ideas that have proved murderous to millions, I find those ideas just worthy of destruction – and the persons promoting them. The legal responses by the German Government are actually rather mild.

    History has been the judge of the worthlessness and the danger of the ideas of National Socialism, they have been falsified by being put into practice.
    There is no need to keep those ideas alive, as they tend to incite to hatred – see the latest case of a Mr. Breivik, whose ideas are in part based on a “defense of the white race”, a core idea of Hitlers Mein Kampf, and who did not just stop with hatred, but put those ideas – again – into practice.

  26. 26
    Robert B.

    Unfortunately, kraut, one of those ideas that keeps killing people is the idea that the government can/should use the law to destroy ideas.

    Or, to put it another way: you know who else used government power to wipe out fascist speech? Stalin.

    (And you might want to ask yourself what exactly is fettering our villainy right now, the US’s I mean, before you get too rough on people who say things their government doesn’t like.)

  27. 27
    shatterface

    Hell, why does the US run the missile defense shield in Europe and why do we still have bases in eastern Europe?

    Is it to protect us from time travelling communists from the 1980s?

  28. 28
    Lou Doench

    “As I’ve said elsewhere, I didn’t grow up surrounded by black folks, but listening to hip-hop was a way for me to connect to that part of my cultural heritage.” I think Dave Chapelle, who grew up and still lives in the little hippie college town of Yellow Springs, Ohio, expressed much the same sentiment.

    On the subject of zoning out black oriented entertainment, that’s a problem even in progressive citys and neighborhoods. My home in the Northside neighborhood of Cincinnati is one of the least segregated in the city. We’re also the most gay friendly and most liberal. But both recent attempts to open a hip hop or jazz type club have failed miserably, in no small part due to resistance from the community council.

  29. 29
    Natalie Reed

    THANK YOU. Yes. A part of me dies every time someone says I totally need to listen to MC Hawking, Richard Cheese, Dread Zeppelin or “this one Weird Al song”. Especially since the humour is typically based on tired juxtapositions that SHOULDN’T be unexpected, ironic or humorous. Like “hahah hip-hop and a scientific genius! That’s funny because hip-hop is for dumb violent people!” or “haha! It’s lounge music! Doing hard rock like Rage Against The Machine! Because commercial corporate ‘alternative’ rock is SOOOOO edgy and harsh and cool, unlike lounge music, which is corporate, asinine and dull!” or “hahaha! Led Zeppelin! Done in reggae style! HILARIOUS BECAUSE BLUES-ROCK AND REGGAE ARE COMPLETELY DIFFERENT GENRES THAT HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH EACHOTHER HAHAHAHAHAHA!”

    Kill me.

    There are lots of artists that incorporate humour in ways I find interesting and fun, like Kool Keith or The Magnetic Fields or The Clash or Will Oldham or ODB or Talking Heads, etc. But I’ve never seen it used as the basis for an act in a way I even found to be a very good joke, let alone a joke good enough to want to hear over and over again.

  30. 30
    tariqata

    Or maybe they just (understandably) declined to seek legal recourse because it’s easier to just not fight it.

    Nail on the head, I suspect.

  31. 31
    DUH

    If the crowd associated with hip hop in this area is causing problems at this place, and getting rid of this genre of music will rid the establishment of riff-raff, then I have no problem with it. I wouldn’t have a problem with a place getting rid of any kind of music if that’s what they wanted to do. Metal crowds tend to drag in skuz-bucket druggies. Don’t want them in your joint? Don’t have metal shows. And if you don’t want feral black youth raising hell in your bar, don’t allow hip hop. In this instance, local government has noticed a pattern/trend with this type of music and the crowd it brings in. If they’re sick of the problems people are causing and don’t want it in their community, that’s THEIR decision. Quit acting like some sort of victim. And while all of you in your smug arrogance act like you’re above the racism, etc, (which it really isnt) there’s not a doubt in my mind that none of you would spend a day of your lives in an all-black neighborhood, much less live in one. That’s the thing with liberals……they only “say” their all about inclusion, multiculturalism, etc. Then they go back to their all-white neighborhoods and gated communities. PS – someone made a reference (an arrogant one, go figure) about only allowing “well-behaved negroes” in. Well, gotta ask, what do you want? Rowdy, misbehaving, black thugs? I’m sure that’s good for business.

    Idiots.

    This is all common sense to anyone that hasn’t been brainwashed by a warped leftist educational system that spews political correctness, rather than acknowledges that statistically, there are stark difference in the amount of crime committed by young african-american (or canadian) men compared to other demographics. Here in the US black men between 16-30 make up maybe 2-3% of the population, and commit in upwards of 40% of the murders in this country. And guess what – probably 99.9% of them listen to rap/hip hop. Now, is pointing this out racism, or just an undeniable fact of life? Or are undeniable statistical facts now racist also?

    I really wish at times that we could just give you assholes your own state. Seriously, all liberals just move to california, and secede. No one would care. Oh, and you’ll be taking all of your voters with you, including the african-americans you claim to love so much. But we all know the truth about that. You’ll buy their votes, but all be damned if you’d ever spend a day around those “darkies.”

    Also, it’s not a “right” to have the type of music you like to be played.

  32. 32
    Crommunist

    AHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Oh my god you’re ADORABLE. I have to draw you.

  33. 33
    DUH

    Sorry man, it’s just a dumb post and a misguided gripe you have. If there weren’t problems associated with the hip hop crowd, they wouldn’t have made this a condition. My pal used to DJ at a “black bar,” and aside from flying, entering that place was the only time I’ve ever been patted down. Now ask yourself why. Oh, feel free to draw me. Lol. And Perhaps consider taking aim at those who act up and create and perpetuate these problems rather than whining about that notice it and address it. You know I’m right about sanctimonious white liberals too

  34. 34
    Crommunist

    You weren’t right about ANYTHING, but it was funny to watch you struggle so hard. It’s like seeing a baby giraffe try to walk for the first time.

  35. 35
    DUH

    Stats don’t lie. And sometimes they hurt sensitive folk’s feelings too. Noticing a trend with certain crowds, music, and trouble they may or may not cause isn’t racism. It is only representative of having an IQ over 70, which apparently, not everyone that has a blog is required to have, unfortunately.

    Enjoy spending your life being pissed at people for noticing the obvious.

  36. 36
    Crommunist

    Stats don’t lie

    REALLY? Please, go on in great detail with your profound understanding of how statistics work. I certainly wouldn’t know anything about that. It’s not like I have a graduate degree in them or anything…

    And you’re right – stats don’t lie, but racist blog trolls often do. The problem isn’t that I don’t believe statistics, it’s that I don’t believe a) that you’ve given any accurate ones, and b) that your interpretation of even your own fictitious stats is in any way valid. Did you know that probably something like 100% of bank fraud is committed by white people? Therefore, we shouldn’t let white people work at banks! It’s just STATISTICS, MAN! Stop being all butthurt because I make stuff up and twist facts to suit my small-minded agenda!

    But please, do tell me more about how I probably secretly hate black people and retreat to my all-white enclave at night to self-congratulate and tell all of my white liberal friends that we’re not racist. It’s fascinating to learn what I do in my spare time from someone who clearly knows me so well.

  37. 37
    DUH

    Here’s all the stats you want about race and crime, via Columbis University. They’re also readily available from the FBI and DoJ.

    http://www.columbia.edu/%7Ers328/Homicide.pdf

    But all you really have to realize this is turn on the news. Arguing that young black men don’t commit a disproportionate amount of crime is just plain ignorant. Again, I’m stating the obvious here. If you can’t handle it, that’s a “you problem,” not a “me problem.”

    Further more, a city government addressing an issue of crime at certain establishments is as old as the day is long. It would be interesting to see what kinds of trouble may have been happening at this place during hip hop shows. I have a feeling that my suspicions will be confirmed: having spent enough time around this crowd, and myself ALSO at one time being a bar owner, rap/hip hop acts bring more trouble than others. And for the record, punk rock shows have their share of trouble too. I would never have any performer at my establishment that fell into either category.

    But that’s just me. You of course, are free to continue pretending that a simple and plainly obvious correlation between music, the crowd it brings, and alcohol is some sort of horrible act of racism. Life may be more pleasant with your head crammed up your butt, but the rest of us that aren’t professional race whiners have no desire to join you there.

  38. 38
    Crommunist

    But all you really have to realize this is turn on the news. Arguing that young black men don’t commit a disproportionate amount of crime is just plain ignorant. Again, I’m stating the obvious here. If you can’t handle it, that’s a “you problem,” not a “me problem.”

    You were nice enough to include a link in your comment. Thank you. I am quite familiar with the statistics, but your kindness is appreciated.

    Please allow me to return the favour: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confirmation_bias

    Also, I don’t know what a “professional race whiner” is, but I do this shit for fun.

  39. 39
    DUH

    No favor or disfavor with those stats. It’s just hard truth, like it or not. For the record, I’d much rather people NOT SHOOT EACH OTHER, but since it happens, and there seems to be a disproportionate amount committed by a certain demographic, it is worth paying attention to. Complaining about people noticing it, rather than directing your anger and/or frustration towards those that actually give people reason to ban hip hop acts from bars will never solve the problem. Why? Because you don’t even know what the problem actually is. I lived this life. I booked shows, ran a bar, etc. Here’s reality: Certain crowds are a pain in the butt. And unfortunately, a lot of times, rap acts are synonymous with thuggish behavior. I live in a large city that is very diverse ethnically, culturally, etc. Made the mistake of lettin’ a buddy of mine DJ on Thursday nights at my place. That lasted about a month, before things got out of hand. Any bar owner will tell you the same thing. There are people you don’t want coming in because they tend to be nuisances. And that is BAD BAD BAD for biz. This isn’t an indictment of blacks in this country. But it is of the rap crowd. Whether you like it or not, a lot of violent, degenerate fools are into this type of music, and they do cause more trouble than, let’s say, an 80′s cover band, or someone strummin an acoustic guitar and singing folk tunes.

    What’s more logical here: a) that a bar that lost it’s liquor license for whatever reason had no trouble during hip hop shows, yet to get the license back, they are not allowed to have hip hop shows, or b) random city in Canada decides to discriminate against young blacks, this bar, and a certain type of music just for the hell of it, because…..OMG racism!!!!1!1!!!! To you and some others, it’s probably scenario B I’m sure. Western society and the media has taught blacks that white peoples default setting is racist. Others are trying to solidify their position on the grievance totem pole to continue justifying race-based perks like affirmative actions. So I can’t say I’m surprised. In that sense, you’re just a product of a educational system and a ratings-driven media that is not interested in truth, and would rather gin up controversy. (Trayvon Martin anyone?)

    Sorry if I offended. I’m just offering another perspective as someone that is familiar with the hassles of idiot bar patrons, the whole “bar life,” and everything it can entail. Running out certain crowds is just part of the biz. And it always will be.

  40. 40
    Crommunist

    Your idiocy is rapidly becoming less amusing, as I start to think you’re not just pretending to be woefully ignorant.

    Your experience, while certainly very interesting, means absolutely nothing when trying to figure out what reality looks like. I’m sure the guys in the Klan can share tons of stories about how awful and inferior Negroes are. Anecdotes are not data. The fact that you ran slack bars with shitty security and incompetent alcohol service doesn’t mean that hip-hop is to blame for violence. There have been violent events at every type of musical performance. You have offered nothing more than your personal opinion (and appeals to turn on the news – where do you think I got this story?) to support the contention that somehow hip-hop deserves to be singled out for particular censure.

    I have nothing but contempt (well, more than the amount that I already have) for your second paragraph. Your arguments are nothing more than National Post talking points and have no evidence whatsoever to support them. Systemic racism is a well-documented, well-understood, and pervasive force in North America, and to suggest that it’s just a craaaaazy coincidence that “certain types of people” are being discriminated against, then I have a bridge to sell you.

    I’m not offended by your statements any more than I am offended by people who ask “why are there still monkeys” is evolution debates. Your wildly uninformed “perspective” is just as meaningless and content-free. But hey, thanks for dropping your knowledge on me, guy. This is my first day doing any research into this whole “racism” thing, and the years that you’ve clearly spent learning the issues is really helpful to me.

  41. 41
    DUH

    Your comments have little substance and are mostly nothing more than juvenile insults, especially your last comment. And I did notice one other thing in the article: gang activity was mentioned as a possible reason for the condition. That’s the nail in the coffin. Safe to say, these “gangstas” aren’t white Canadian kids. This is a town running a bad element out, which apparently you don’t think they should be able to do. So if I am to understand you correctly: making establishment less attractive to gang bangers is racism.

    Right on. Got it.

    Good luck on your future efforts in using bogus claims of racism to continue justifying race-based perks. Clearly, you fall into that camp. A professional victim.

    PS: my perspective comes from owning and running establishments in a large city for several years. I speak from a point of reference and a level of experience on this issue that you will never, ever have.

    Hip hop may not be to BLAME for violence, but speaking from EXPERIENCE, some of its fans are to blame, and much more than other types of music fans. Pointing this out is hardly racist. Most people with a pulse know this. that you can’t see this speaks either to your lack of intelligence, or your intellectual dishonesty.

    Myself, and numerous other bar owners I’ve met and are friends with would not even think of booking a rap gig. Why? Like the article stated, it brings in a bad element. And sooner or later, s**t hits the fan.

  42. 42
    Crommunist

    So first I’m a professional ‘race whiner’, and now I’m a professional ‘victim’? Jeez, with all of these professions, it’s a wonder I find any time to go to my actual job!

    I will respond with substance when presented with something substantial to respond to. So far all you’ve said (repeatedly) is “I used to work at a bar, and I totally noticed that hip-hop is the worst, and therefore my wild speculation us just as good as evidence”. Yeah, gang activity was mentioned as a POTENTIAL reason, but there’s no evidence whatsoever that this is ACTUALLY the case. So yes, jumping to the twin conclusions that a) it’s because of gangs, and b) that the gangs aren’t white people, is really fucking racist.

    Your individual perspective is TOTALLY MEANINGLESS (despite your years of careful, rigorous study as ‘guy who has owned a bar’). I know you don’t get that, and you probably never will. This is the reason why people actually bother to do scientific investigations of things – because “personal experience” means exactly dick all. It’s risible that you accuse ME of intellectual dishonesty, when every single sentence you’ve written so far is dripping with one logical fallacy after another.

    There are lots of places that regularly book rap gigs and have few or no problems, even in major cities with gang problems. The fact that all of your buddies arrived at the same stupid conclusion doesn’t mean that rap is bad – it means that y’all suck at your jobs.

    Anyway, like I said, you’ve stopped being entertaining, and considering the extent to which your arrogance is surpassed only by your ignorance on anything other than your “personal experience” (read: incurious following of your own belief in stereotypes), I have little interest in blunting the sword of my wit against the stone edifice of your stupidity. Feel free to comment however you like – maybe another reader will feel like wasting some of their time.

  43. 43
    SallyStrange

    Feel free to comment however you like – maybe another reader will feel like wasting some of their time.

    Given how many of us suffer from SIWOTI syndrome, this is really kind of mean.

  44. 44
    Pteryxx

    Heck, I might even explain “risible” to this one.

  45. 45
    DUH

    Sorry, one final comment: OH, look out for those WHITE GANGSTAS! Because they’re just EVERYWHERE. The fact that you want to pretend that there is equal problems among these two demographics with gangs shows how stupid and brainwashed your are.

    And hey asshole, not only do I have more personal experience in this field than you ever will, I have statistics, of which you said YOU WERE ALSO FAMILIAR WITH, validating everything I’ve said. All you have is political correctness and professional victimhood. And yes, a race whiner and a professional victim are pretty much the same thing. You happen to be both.

    Go get bent, you fucking ignoramus.

  46. 46
    DUH

    And try this….

    google “shooting at rap concert”

    And look at what comes up.

    This is why many bar owners and communities don’t want these douche bags in their neighborhoods and establishments. The odds on all hell breaking loose at a rap show far exceed that of any other style of music, because let’s face it, if you are bringing a lot of young black guys into an area, statistically, there’s more likelihood of a shooting, particularly in larger cities and bad areas. And I’m more concerned with my business and self-preservation than I am some naive little pseudo-intellectual snot like you calling me racist.

    Tell black-america to start raising their fucking kids right, then maybe the crime rate will drop and this inconvenient stereotype will go the way of the dinosaurs. Until then, tough shit. No other demographic on this continent commits nearly the amount of crime young black men do. And people are just fucking sick of it, and furthermore, sick of the blame being placed anywhere but on the communities that churn out these violent, degenerate little bastards.

    Cry racism all you want. Most WHITES don’t give a shit anymore.

  47. 47
    Pteryxx

    Well, “Sorry if I offended. I’m just offering another perspective…” didn’t hold up either. What a, um, surprise. *rolleyes*

  48. 48
    Pascale

    +1.

  49. 49
    DUH

    I retract my apology.

    And go fuck yourself.

  50. 50
    jamesskaar

    so… why not put one of those signs up, specifically to get media attention?

  51. 51
    Wall Mural

    Fuckin LOLL!

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