“Blurred Lines”: Summer Song or “Rapey” Anthem?

By , 16, Staff Writer
September 3, 2013

Many would say that “Blurred Lines” was both the song of the summer and the most controversial song of the year thus far. The music video, which originally featured three topless women, was banned from YouTube less than a week after it was released and criticized for its overt sexualization and objectification of the women.

While the music video’s presentation of the featured women angered me, the thing that I found truly offensive was the blatant depiction of non-consensual sexual relationships.

The lyrics go…

I hate these blurred lines
I know you want it
I know you want it
I know you want it
But you’re a good girl
The way you grab me
Must wanna get nasty

The message is so clear you can almost imagine the scene unfolding. Robin Thicke, hating the “blurred lines” between whether the girl wants to have sex with him or not, says he “knows” she wants it. He also says her behavior suggests she wants to have sex with him, though nowhere in the song do we hear that she actually wants to have sex with him. While this is just a song, this confusion about consent or agreeing to have sex can happen when people don’t stop and talk about sex openly and directly. Though lots of people have sex without discussing it formally, assuming what your partner wants just by the way they, for example, “grab you” is unacceptable.

The thing that I think is almost just as disturbing as the lyrics is the fact that the song is so catchy and upbeat that it’s rather misleading, as if to say that non-consensual sex is totally OK, fun and even enjoyable, and this is simply not the case.

If your partner does not explicitly say yes before engaging in any kind of sexual behavior, you don’t know what he or she is actually consenting to. So while music and pop culture might continue to use sexualization, it’s essential that we understand that because there can be blurred lines when it comes to sexual consent, we have to stop and talk to one another about what we do and don’t want.   

Posted In: Abuse & Violence | Sex
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