When I saw the front-page article in The Daily Pennsylvanian announcing that Tyga would be coming to Spring Fling, I immediately grabbed the paper in hopes of finding you. You, my fellow Penn student. You, who feel outraged that Penn would support an artist whose lyrics contrast so starkly with the image that Penn presents of itself as an institution promoting diversity and a positive view of women and minorities.
You may not have known much about Tyga before, but when you heard the news, you looked up a few of his songs. You were appalled to find the following lyrics in some of his hit singles: “Need a bitch that can fuck, cook, clean, right. Turn a bitch out, make her lick twice” (“Bitches Ain’t Shit”). Or, “Shut the fuck up and jump on this dick. Nothing but a motherfucking skank. Fuck what you talking bout and fuck what you think” (“Bitch Betta Have My Money”).
You were horrified, and you found the most awful kind of irony in the fact that the DP printed the article announcing Tyga’s appearance at Fling directly above an article entitled “Gender diversity in the UA still lags.”
I want to let you know that I am out here too, and I would really like to meet you. After having some conversations with my friends here at Penn, I’m astounded that so many of them read these lyrics and respond: “Well, I just really don’t care,” or “I just listen to it for the music, not for the lyrics,” or “The stupid words in the song don’t actually make any difference.” I recognize that plenty of my peers here do feel that way. That’s their prerogative, and I’m sure they’ll enjoy the concert. It is my own fault, but I just do not know how to have a conversation with someone who needs me to explain why this bothers me.
I did not find you interviewed in the DP article. I guess they never asked for your opinion. It was exciting for a moment toward the end of the article when they interviewed one student who was unhappy about Tyga coming. The disappointment came right back when her reasoning was not the offensive content of his speech but the fact that he only has one big hit. So the problem is now I’m starting to wonder if you exist at all. I’ve spent four years and way too much money at this school to graduate without meeting you.
So if you are out there, email me. Let’s get together and talk about how even though there may be examples of female Penn students or individuals of color who are okay with what Tyga puts out there, we love our female and Asian peers too much to support an artist who says, “Gotta China bitch, straight from Beijing. Pussy so tight, all she do is scream,” (“Make it Nasty”), or “Yo got an Asian bitch on my left, ’nother Asian bitch right, right side” (“Heisman Part 2”). Similarly, let’s agree that our love for our black peers will prevent us from paying him to make the offensive reference, “all my niggas like Trayvon, ready to die for they hood” (“Luv Dem”).
My email is email@example.com. Let’s get lunch. I’ll buy.
Emily Goshey is a College senior.