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verbal_kraze
50 Cent and Reebok Under Fire From O'Reilly
Bill O'Reilly is at it again, this time with 50 Cent and Reebok as the target for his venom on his O'Reilly Factor show.

Yesterday, Fox News' Bill O'Reilly took a shot at Reebok International for its affiliation with 50 Cent, calling the relationship "corporate pollution." Recently, the multi-platinum rapper inked an endorsement deal with Reebok for his G-Unit sneakers, which is a top-seller for the sneaker giant since it's launch in November 2003.

"Reebok should be ashamed of themselves," O'Reilly told the Boston Herald before his show last night. "They're embracing a guy who's hurting children."

The cable news king even got The Congress of Racial Equality on the show to identify what it considers the five worst rappers and their corporate ties. 50 Cent and Reebok came in at No. 3.

When the cable news king talks, corporate America listens. It was Reilly's wrangling of Pepsi that resulted in the soda giant dumping Ludacris as a spokesperson in 2003. And earlier this month, O'Reilly threatened to give Anheuser-Busch the gas face if they hired Luda as a pitchman for the beer.

So far, Reebok is standing by the Queens-born rapper, who donates 50 cents to charity for each pair of G-Unit shoes sold. The sell-through rate on the G-Unit signature sneaker is one of the best ever for a Reebok product in Foot Locker stores.

"We enjoy working with 50 Cent and recognize the excitement he brings to our brand," Reebok said in a statement.

Still, O'Reilly is convinced Reebok should sever ties with 50 Cent citing the rapper's negative lyrics as a decay to America's kids.

"It's a horrible influence on children," he said. "It's desensitizing them. Ten-year-old little boys are calling 10-year-old little girls `beeyatches' and `hos.'"

Reebok commented that it doesn't condone every action of its hundreds of athletic and entertainment endorsers, but it does support their rights to free expression.

written by Rich Rock
Wednesday - March 10, 2004

Pataphysician
QUOTE
It's desensitizing them.


- Bill O'Reilly, Sensitive Male
Donnie Darko
His argument holds no water, as I call 10 year old girls Beeyatches and Hos and I don't listen to 50 cent.

In all seriousness though, it's no surprise that our moral Guardian takes offense when a shoe corporation allies itself with someone whose free speech offends Mr. O'Reilly, but then he doesn't say a peep when those same shoe corporations pay their sweatshop employees $2 a day to make their $100+ shoes in factories with horrible conditions and safety records.

How "Fair and Balanced".
Absomphe
Kathie Lee Gifford would be so proud.... cdog-plain.gif
verbal_kraze
He's just doing his job fighting for the upper-middle class Christian Coalition types that are to busy working to afford bigger homes and bigger SUV's that they can't raise their own children, and teach them right from wrong.
verbal_kraze
Adults shouldn't be able to Listen to gangster rap, watch violent TV shows, Porn, or play violent or sexual video games, because they may get into the hands of poor attention starved kids who may do someting crazy.

Artemis
QUOTE
those same shoe corporations pay their sweatshop employees $2 a day to make their $100+ shoes


And why do you suppose they cost $100? So they can afford to pay the likes of "Fifty Cent" hundreds of thousands of dollars to hawk that garbage.
traineraz
Gee, I wonder what the National Organization of Women or similar ultra-liberal organizations think of 50 Cent's lyrics or the companies which support him?

Hmmmm . . .

Sponge Bob
One of the saddest things about our society in this day and age is that we seem to have lost our sense of shame.

Fifty cent is a disgrace to men, and more specifically to black men. He is a symbol of the rot that has infected this country. He represents men who use violence as an answer to every day problems. Men who mistreat women. In general he represents every thugish brutish aspect of the male character.

I don't disagree with his right to free speech, but I'll excersise mine to tell you that he's an out and out idiot.

I can't believe anyone would chastise Bill O'Reilly for pointing out the obvious.

BlackJack
Yeah, and what about that Johnny Cash guy, always singing about shooting his wife and doing cocaine and stuff...?
Perruche_verte
But the evil-doing protagonist in his songs was typically punished with jail and death, and Cash strongly indicated that this was right! There was none of this horseshit attitude that it's fine to get money any way you can get it (whether it be narcotics, or advertising sweatshop-made shoes).

"...and leave that cocaine be!"
Perruche_verte
Sorry... double-barrelled post...
I_B_Puffin
QUOTE (verbal_kraze @ Mar 10 2004, 10:06 AM)
And earlier this month, O'Reilly threatened to give Anheuser-Busch the gas face if they hired Luda as a pitchman for the beer.

OK, I understand the shoe thing since the advertisements are aimed at kids, who are ignorant enough to pay $100 for $10 shoes because of a celebrity endorsement, they could at least pick a respectable celebrity to fleece the kids. But beer is an adult product.
Artemis
O'Reilly is a loud-mouthed, kneejerk ass. He's always offering to give someone "the last word" and then shouting them down. He gives conservatives a bad name, not that there's anything especially conservative about him. I think he belongs to a group with one member.
Artemis
Johnny's songs were about the wages of sin (death), not a celebration of sin, and the protagaonists were clearly portrayed as reaping the consequences of their own actions, not as the victims of opression by the man, or people just going along with the flow in the hood.
sixela
QUOTE (verbal_kraze @ Mar 10 2004, 07:55 PM)
He's just doing his job fighting for the upper-middle class Christian Coalition types that are to busy working to afford bigger homes and bigger SUV's that they can't raise their own children, and teach them right from wrong.

Hey! don't offend me: I'm an upper middle-class male too busy working to afford more absinthe to raise my own children.

Of course, I'm offended by the poor grammar, not the implication my children don't know wright from rong.
Absomphe
Ditto.
Donnie Darko
QUOTE (Artemis @ Mar 10 2004, 11:30 AM)
QUOTE
those same shoe corporations pay their sweatshop employees $2 a day to make their $100+ shoes


And why do you suppose they cost $100? So they can afford to pay the likes of "Fifty Cent" hundreds of thousands of dollars to hawk that garbage.

Yup. They also probably cost $100-180 because Nike set that price standard in the late 80s with Michael Jordan's shoes, which is what started the whole celebrity shoe endorsement thing to begin with. Funny how paying for celebrity endorsement negates the money you saved by paying 12 year olds $2 a day to make your shoes in Honduras.

My shoes cost $110 (Fluevog boots) and are sweatshop free. They will also last far longer than Nikes or Reeboks (which last about 6 months or less if you use them for atheletic activities.) People say "Buy American", but I'm not giving a penny to an American company that makes low quality goods, runs sweatshops overseas and gets tax benefits because of it.
Artemis
I wear Wolverine boots (made in the Mitten). I've had the same pair for ten years or so.
Donnie Darko
I really like their Harley Davidson line of boots they make. I'll probably get a pair of those whenever my Fluevogs wear out.
verbal_kraze
I just feel that entertainers should have as much of a right to endorse products as anyone else. Bill O'Rielly is on a mission to stop every rapper from endorsing products. Rap is entertainment, just like movies. I'm sure that if Al Pacino, who's played plenty of gangsters in films came out with a shoe, Bill wouldn't be on a mission to take his endorsement away. Those products and adds are aimed at hip-hop culture as a whole, not just kids. I should be able to enjoy the music and products if I want to as an adult. 50 should have the right to say and sell what ever he wants as well in a so-called free country. It's up to the parents to teach their kids right from wrong.
verbal_kraze
And IMHO Jonny Cash was the first real Gangsta Rapper. He will always be missed.
BlackJack
QUOTE (Perruche_verte @ Mar 10 2004, 07:43 PM)
But the evil-doing protagonist in his songs was typically punished with jail and death, and Cash strongly indicated that this was right! There was none of this horseshit attitude that it's fine to get money any way you can get it (whether it be narcotics, or advertising sweatshop-made shoes).

"...and leave that cocaine be!"

Not necessarily. Remember, an awful lot of the more violent songs were TRADITIONAL folk ballads, and in these evil often triumphs.

Violent and degrading imagery has always been a part of popular entertainment. "Gangta rap" is very much a return to the themes of early blues and jazz music.
Artemis
QUOTE
"Gangta rap" is very much a return to the themes of early blues and jazz music.


I've never heard an ugly blues song. The "rap" crap I've heard that's NOT ugly, I could count the tracks without running out of fingers. Blues sucks me into the story; rap makes me want to slam the door on the ugliness and profanity way before I get a chance to discern if there IS a story.
Hiram
QUOTE (verbal_kraze @ Mar 11 2004, 08:45 AM)
It's up to the parents to teach their kids right from wrong.

And what if the parents don't know right from wrong?

One of the hugest social issues we're faced with is a steadily degrading sense of - dare I say it? - morality. I'm not talking about any one particular brand of morality, I'm just talking about teaching our kids to be good people in general.

With each passing generation, the notion of doing the right thing becomes "corny" to more and more young people. With the rejection of the strict and irrational morals prescribed by mainstream religions, the ordinary core values get dismissed as well - the baby is thrown out with the bath water.

QUOTE
Rap is entertainment, just like movies.

I don't have a fully-formed opinion about the endorsement issue, my only comment here is that "entertainment," whether it's music, movies or video games, is not merely entertainment - particularly for kids - it is instructive.

Young people are in a constant state of learning and receiving input. As a parent, I can assure you that kids don't just learn what you tell them to learn; quite reverse, as it often turns out. They learn what they are shown.

Gangsta-nigga-mutha-fucka-pop-a-cap-in-yo-ass rap teaches what? That killing, raping, and general hooliganism are acceptable and praiseworthy responses to the rage that accompanies injustice or conflict.

Blues teaches that life sucks sometimes, but you stuggle through it and you get by.

Rap teaches that life sucks sometimes, and when it does you kill whitey.
verbal_kraze
Rap is just another medium of expression, and the artists and topics run the gambit from, uplifting and soulful, to political and poetic, to silly and fun, to gangsta and violent. I apreciate and love all types of music. I have written songs and performed in bands playing in most Genres and many instruments. From hard rock to metal to Jazz, to punk, to ska, Ragga, to hip-hop, and everything in between. I have the most fun composing hip-hop tracks and MCing. I find it more challenging than the other styles I have played. I love to take elements fom all types of music and use them in my beats.
verbal_kraze
QUOTE (Hiram @ Mar 11 2004, 10:21 AM)
QUOTE (verbal_kraze @ Mar 11 2004, 08:45 AM)
It's up to the parents to teach their kids right from wrong.

And what if the parents don't know right from wrong?

One of the hugest social issues we're faced with is a steadily degrading sense of - dare I say it? - morality. I'm not talking about any one particular brand of morality, I'm just talking about teaching our kids to be good people in general.

With each passing generation, the notion of doing the right thing becomes "corny" to more and more young people. With the rejection of the strict and irrational morals prescribed by mainstream religions, the ordinary core values get dismissed as well - the baby is thrown out with the bath water.

QUOTE
Rap is entertainment, just like movies.

I don't have a fully-formed opinion about the endorsement issue, my only comment here is that "entertainment," whether it's music, movies or video games, is not merely entertainment - particularly for kids - it is instructive.

Young people are in a constant state of learning and receiving input. As a parent, I can assure you that kids don't just learn what you tell them to learn; quite reverse, as it often turns out. They learn what they are shown.

Gangsta-nigga-mutha-fucka-pop-a-cap-in-yo-ass rap teaches what? That killing, raping, and general hooliganism are acceptable and praiseworthy responses to the rage that accompanies injustice or conflict.

Blues teaches that life sucks sometimes, but you stuggle through it and you get by.

Rap teaches that life sucks sometimes, and when it does you kill whitey.

Gangsta rap is a small persentage of what hip-hop is about, It is just what the media focuses on, and is most popular. There is a TON of great hip-hop that teaches life is hard but you struggle to get by like blues. You got artists like Kanye west, Tali Kweli, Mos Def, Common, etc, that bring a positive message, and whos music is quite uplifting.

IMHO The news media is much more dangerous to kids than gangsta rap. I don't know that there's been as much of a decline in morality than there has been a greater focus on it in the media. The same things have been going on for a long time, it's just more in the open now.

People have been fascinated by gangster culture for a long time now, this country has a LONG history of gangs, and gang violence. Look at all the books and movies that have been made. Gangsta rap is just another way to tell the story. And it is a lot better to rap about something than to actually do it. It's healty to get out your feelings on a song, or by listening to that music. It makes you feel better. The people that would act on what they see or hear are not all there in the first place, and would do what they do whether ithey heard it in a song or not
Hiram
QUOTE (verbal_kraze @ Mar 11 2004, 10:40 AM)
Gangsta rap is a small persentage of what hip-hop is about,  It is just what the media focuses on, and is most popular.  There is a TON of great hip-hop that teaches life is hard but you struggle to get by like blues...

That's cool, I have nothing against the genre in general; sometimes I find the sound quite fun. It's the lyrical content of a lot of it that I find so distressing.

QUOTE
IMHO The news media is much more dangerous to kids than gangsta rap.

I don't know about more dangerous, but I agree the state of the news media is shameful at best.

QUOTE
I don't know that there's been as much of a decline in morality than there has been a greater focus on it in the media.

I do. I'm not talking about watching the media, I'm talking about what I see around me on the streets and in people I know and meet.
QUOTE
The same things have been going on for a long time, it's just more in the open now.

I'd argue that crime statistics suggest otherwise.
verbal_kraze
I just think it's ridiculous that Bill O'Rielly thinks it's his personal mission to stop Hip-Hop endorsements, cuz he dosn't agree with the lyrical content. He got pepsi to pull Ludacris, just to replace him with the Osbornes. Yeah that makes sence.

50's shoes are ugly, and he is far overrated as an artist, but if people want to use him to sell products, why the hell not.
verbal_kraze
Hip-Hop and Absinthe
Both highly misunderstood because of misinformed media sensationalism.
Hiram
AGREED!!!
abs-cheers.gif abs-cheers.gif abs-cheers.gif
Hiram
And dude, the site where you were hot-linking your avatar from went tits up.
verbal_kraze
I noticed that yesterday afternoon for a minute, but it seems to be back up now, at least on my end.
BlackJack
QUOTE (Artemis @ Mar 11 2004, 10:05 AM)
I've never heard an ugly blues song.

Ugly in form or content? There is PLENTY of old blues stuff (usually created for black audiences) that is full of the same sort of pompous posturing, sexual bravado, and vicious violence that can be found in modern rap. More melodic, perhaps, but not nicer. "Stagger Lee" is the most obvious example, and the origins of that pre-date the blues.
BlackJack
QUOTE (Hiram @ Mar 11 2004, 10:21 AM)
Gangsta-nigga-mutha-fucka-pop-a-cap-in-yo-ass rap teaches what? That killing, raping, and general hooliganism are acceptable and praiseworthy responses to the rage that accompanies injustice or conflict.


Speaking as someone who grew up on Punk-Rock, I find this kind of thing terribly amusing. In its prime, Punk was seen as the downfall of western civilization and the end of morality. A decade later, people were blaming all the world's ills on Heavy Metal. Today, both of these genres seem not only harmless to most people, but kind of quaint and silly. Let us not forget how Rock-and-Roll "jungle music" was going to corrupt our youth in the '50s.

More to the point, however, I don't think anyone is suggesting that all of this music is appropriate for kids, any more than William S. Burroughs or Stanley Kubrick are appropriate for kids. It would be the death of innovation if all art were forced to become G-rated.

QUOTE
Blues teaches that life sucks sometimes, but you stuggle through it and you get by.


You haven't listened to a lot of blues, have you? As much as anything, it teaches that life sucks, theres nothing to be done about it, so you might as well drink. A good portion of it teaches that life sucks so much that you end up having to kill or steal to survive, not to mention that women suck and need a good smacking aroung to stay in line.
Hiram
I'd call that getting by.
verbal_kraze
QUOTE (BlackJack @ Mar 11 2004, 12:03 PM)
More to the point, however, I don't think anyone is suggesting that all of this music is appropriate for kids, any more than William S. Burroughs or Stanley Kubrick are appropriate for kids. It would be the death of innovation if all art were forced to become G-rated.


I agree. I don't think that it's appropriate for kids. BUt I don't think everything needs to be tailored to be appropriate for kids. I want to be able to listen to my music the way it was written, I want to watch my south park, hentai, and play some Grand Theft Auto. I don't mind seeing hip-hop artists push products, the way the music industry is going now artists have to find some other way to make money, CD sales alone aren't gonna cut it much longer.
verbal_kraze
Talib Kweli- Get by
This morning, I woke up
Feeling brand new and I jumped up
Feeling my highs, and my lows
In my soul, and my goals
Just to stop smokin, and stop drinkin
And I've been thinkin - I've got my reasons
Just to get (by), just to get (by)
Just to get (by), just to get (by)

We keep it gangster say "fo shizzle", "fo sheezy" and "stayin crunk"
Its easy to pull a breezy, smoke trees, and we stay drunk
Yo, I activism - attackin the system, the blacks and latins in prison
Numbers of prison they victim lackin in the vision
Shit and all they got is rappin to listen to
I let them know we missin you, the love is unconditional
Even when the condition is critical, when the livin is miserable
Your position is pivotal, I ain't bullshittin you
Now, why would I lie? Just to get by?
Just to get by, we get fly
The TV got us reachin for stars
Not the ones between Venus and Mars, the ones that be readin for parts
Some people get breast enhancements and penis enlargers
Saturday sinners Sunday morning at the feet of the Father
They need somethin to rely on, we get high on all types of drug
When, all you really need is love
To get by.. just to get by
Just to get by, just to get by
Our parents sing like John Lennon, "Imagine all the people watch"
We rock like Paul McCartney from now until the last Beat'll drop
Artemis
CODE
Ugly in form or content?


First of all, I haven't heard enough rap to have an INFORMED opinion, so I just have to back off from generalities about it.
But I meant content.

QUOTE
There is PLENTY of old blues stuff (usually created for black audiences) that is full of the same sort of pompous posturing, sexual bravado, and vicious violence that can be found in modern rap.


Maybe, but it's not expressed in terms that immediately make me turn it off. Maybe it's the presentation.

QUOTE
"Stagger Lee" is the most obvious example, and the origins of that pre-date the blues.


Thank you for making my point. How could you NOT like "Stagger Lee"? It towers head and shoulders over any Rap number ever created, but that's just my own taste, I guess.
verbal_kraze
Yup it's just a matter of taste, either you love it or you hate it. And if all you have to base your opinion on is what you hear on TV or Radio when you happen to catch it, you probably wont' like it.
Absomphe
"More to the point, however, I don't think anyone is suggesting that all of this music is appropriate for kids, any more than William S. Burroughs or Stanley Kubrick are appropriate for kids."

They're not? shock.gif

Oh, maybe that's why I turned out this way. viking_emoticon.gif
verbal_kraze
Yeah me too! My parents used to use A Clockwork Orange and Full metal Jacket as babysitters.
Absomphe
If you started reading that prolific Victorian underground pornographer "Anonymous" at about age 10, then you'd really know where some of your eccentricities stemmed from!

What can I say...my parents were European in their sensibilities. boobs.gif
BlackJack
QUOTE (Artemis @ Mar 11 2004, 12:41 PM)
Maybe, but it's not expressed in terms that immediately make me turn it off. Maybe it's the presentation.

Well, that's certainly a legitimate reason not to like something. I don't listen to hip-hop myself, for the most part, because I don't connect to it on a cultural level, but it can't be any more harmful than, say, "Baby Dick Fuck" by GWAR, which I think is a hoot.

I think it's important to realize that the sanitized, non-violent, non-sexual popular enterainment of the past 200 years or so is the exception, historically speaking. The violent, ribald anti-hero is an important part of folk culture.
thegreenimp
Screw Rap.....Harry the Hipster is God!
verbal_kraze
Let me leave you with some of 50's wisdom

"Don't throw stones if you live in a glass house, and if you got a glass jaw you should watch you mouth.....Cuz I'll break your face"

And now bact to our regularly scheduled forum
Artemis
QUOTE
I think it's important to realize that the sanitized, non-violent, non-sexual popular enterainment of the past 200 years or so is the exception, historically speaking. The violent, ribald anti-hero is an important part of folk culture.


Well that's true enough. We have for example, the Romans' colisseum ....

I went to a renaissance (this post is challenging my ex tempore spelling skills) fair once, in Iowa (! - there was no mead or ale - what kind of fair is that?) and there was a jester, or fool, who went through the crowd fucking with people. It was quite disturbing to me at the time. I could appreciate it, though, and it made me wonder how people took that sort of thing in "olden times".

Here is this stuff I found myself liking when I heard it, immediately, instinctively, which tells me it's probably a cut above, or at least not like the rest of "rap":

rza (Ghost Dog sound track)
Mystikal (New Orleans influence very obvious)
Outkast (My daughter made me listen to it - very intelligent, very clever, very different)

Lately I've been hearing the Beastie Boys on the 80s channel I listen to on the Internet - I don't know what box it came out of, but it's some funny, clever stuff.
verbal_kraze
Good Choices

RZA and the rest of the Wu-Tang clan have some great music. RZA's beats to me are the punk rock of hip hop, grimey and dirty and underproduced. I'll always be a fan of Wu Tang

Mystical is good. I really liked the southern influence on his last album. I actually had the pleasure of opening for him and Snoop last year in Vegas for 7,000. Deffinately one of the most awesome experiences I've had.

Oatkast has always been on the cutting edge and progressed hip hop in so many innovative new directions.

If you ever get a chance check out Aesop Rock IMHO he is one of the best MC/storytellers/poet I've heard.

Aesop Rock
Pataphysician
ANTI-POP CONSORTIUM
the last word in rap. no one comes close. period.
traineraz
QUOTE
Gangsta rap is a small persentage of what hip-hop is about, It is just what the media focuses on, and is most popular. There is a TON of great hip-hop that teaches life is hard but you struggle to get by like blues. You got artists like Kanye west, Tali Kweli, Mos Def, Common, etc, that bring a positive message, and whos music is quite uplifting.


So . . . you believe that Bill O'Reilly would attempt to lead a boycott if any of the above, with positive and uplifting messages, were doing product endorsements?

Let us not forget . . . boycotts (or threats of boycotts) are certainly grassroots actions, and one of the few ways the American people can truly make their voices heard: Voting with their money. I don't agree with the reason every boycotter selects for boycotting, but I agree with his/her right to do so.

Threats of boycotts made Kathie Lee Gifford shut down her sweatshops, no?
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