New music ‘policy’ doesn’t add up

Tia Baldwin

More stories from Tia Baldwin

Freesole Family
February 26, 2016

The music policy is overly-conservative and hypocritical.

At last year’s Turnabout Dance, students sang along, with explicit words, to a censored version of Big Sean’s “I Don’t **** With You.” Concerned, the administration decided to implement a music policy that approves and disapproves certain songs for school activities and dances.

The administration is in the process of creating a policy that bans some songs that promote inappropriate action or behavior, substance abuse or discrimination, according to Activities Director Gail Smith.

While censoring music that promotes substance abuse and discrimination is understandable, creating the most conservative playlist in the south suburban area is not.

The administration seems to be having a hard time doing so anyway, as there is no written policy.

Despite the lack of a written policy, the approved and disapproved song lists show that “inappropriate” means that there is explicit language or sexually suggestive lyrics.

This definition of “inappropriate” seems distinctly reminiscent of the conservative American society in

the 1950’s. This society was based upon “traditional American family values” that only filmed Elvis Presley from the waist up, because his hip-shaking was too sexual.

As a public school, the administration should look into moving forward with the rest of America as a more progressive unit, and limit the retrograding.

Many could argue that the administration is only trying to conserve the innocence of the student body.

They should be commended, as this is a difficult task to uphold while managing to prepare students for “the real world.”

However, if the administration would like to implement a policy laced with conservatism, it should at the least be consistent.

The categorization of the approved and disapproved song lists seemed to be completely arbitrary.

Take R. Kelly’s “Ignition (Remix)” and TLC’s “Scrubs,” for example. Each made it onto one of these lists.

Could you guess what category each song was placed into?

TLC’s “Scrubs” made it onto the disapproved list, while R. Kelly’s “Ignition (Remix)” made it onto the approved list.

Seems odd, doesn’t it?

TLC’s “Scrubs” is banned because it “says ‘dead beat a**’ one time”.

If the administration was going along with their definition of “inappropriate”, due to one profane line, TLC’s “Scrubs” should be on the disapproved list. However, it seems meticulous that the administration would choose a song about women’s empowerment to crack down on.

The administration’s choice of placing R. Kelly’s “Ignition(Remix)” on the approved list perfectly displays just one of the many hypocritical examples ridden throughout the arbitrary and overly conservative music ‘policy’.

As soon as the song made direct references to “coke and rum”, it should have been disapproved.

However, one cannot criticise the tireless eyes of the administration for overlooking one line.

Despite that, a red flag should definitely have been raised when they realized that the entirety of “Ignition (Remix)” is an allusion to sexual intercourse- something we know the administration would like to protect the student body from discovering.

In order to move forward in a progressive society while maintaining its mission of preparing students for the real world, the administration should look into changing the policy.

Let’s be sensible. Allow clean versions of songs to be played. If radio stations can play certain songs, we should be able to as well.

Also, let’s be consistent. Create a real, written policy that will not allow room for confusion.