Questioning whether the 2022 Super Bowl Halftime Show featuring Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Eminem, 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar, and Mary J. Blige was good or not depends on whether or not you think American morals and values have gone down the toilet.
Thirty years ago or so, Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre were social outcasts, shunned by mainstream America because of what they represent with their music, and the lifestyles they portray. Now, times have obviously changed. We seemingly openly embrace the abuse of drugs, alcohol, and of course, the exploitation of women, or more appropriately, “bitches and hoes”, as the majority of performers in the show refer to women in their songs.
Having a background in the music business, I will admit I do like some songs by Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and Eminem. They are talented musicians with good beats, but there is a big difference between listening to their songs in a club or in my car and giving them center stage at the biggest performance on the planet.
As a semi-responsible adult, I have a problem with what is being conveyed in these performances because the Super Bowl is supposed to be a “family friendly” event. Please note, I use the term “family friendly” loosely because of what we’ve seen in the recent years not only from the halftime performances, but the NFL players themselves. Maybe I’m just getting old, but by “family friendly” I merely refer to something not being overtly offensive, though offensive is obviously a subjective term. Rather, I should say, “what is socially acceptable.”
Historically, the Super Bowl generates a tremendous increase in music sales for whoever performs. There is a whole generation of kids who may not be entirely familiar with the music played by these Super Bowl performers, so imagine the surprise of the easily offended parents the day after when they ask their children, “WHAT IS THAT YOU’RE LISTENING TO?”
But then again, maybe they won’t be offended…
Morals and values as we once knew them are long gone, and so are expectations of how we are supposed to act and think. In our ultra liberal world of, “You can’t say that”, how is it that we as a society encourage and support this sort of public hypocrisy?
Snoop is obviously well known for his affinity of drugs, liquor, and abuse of women. Dr. Dre and his group N.W.A. were founders of the infamous “Gangsta Rap” genre. If you’re not familiar with N.W.A., go do a quick Google search after reading this. Both Snoop and Dre made their claims to fame with many songs advocating all of the above topics, as well as promoting general violence, crime, and anti-police sentiment. Both also freely encourage use of the no-no “N” word.
How has what these musical artists portray become so acceptable in the eyes of society?
Keep in mind, both were grounded in their roots within the Los Angeles street gang culture of the 1980’s and early 90’s (Remember the Crips and Bloods?), with topics so vividly presented in the majority of their songs. Dr. Dre backed off a little from portraying this as time went on, but Snoop has continued to proudly proclaim his Crip gang affiliation over the years in mainstream songs. As for 50 Cent and Kendrick Lamar, they also embrace exploitation culture in their songs, as well as promoting a lifestyle that may be viewed as questionable by some.
Are we supposed be offended by this or not?
If we also look at the reckless and illegal behaviors displayed by many NFL players, then yes, the 2022 halftime show was totally appropriate for the current culture. I refer to the many arrests we hear about in the news for a variety of crimes (Drug possession, DUI, domestic abuse, weapons violations, animal abuse, etc.). The NFL sweeps these behaviors under the rug, but they’re out there. Gone also are the days of sports figures being role models, unless they are modeling something different, perhaps something more consistent with the content of the music offered by the halftime show performers.
At least the commercials were okay…
When we think about past Super Bowl shows, 2022 was actually fairly tame. There was no “wardrobe malfunctions”, no social commentary thrown in our faces, and nothing beyond just questioning how we got to this point in life where we accept what we saw.
As the old saying goes, “It is what it is…”
Some people tune in to watch a football game, I tune in to gauge our world. Some say it was the best halftime show ever, but I guess it all depends on how you look at it. In order for someone to be offended by something, they have to identify a problem. If no one saw anything wrong with it, maybe that is the problem.
~ Marty ~
Good wholesome family entertainment is getting hard to find, but you’ve always got my blog!
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