Rihanna — Pop or porn?

Rihanna — Pop or porn?

Outrageous pop music videos like Rihanna's "Pour It Up" feature lots of gyrating, scantily clad dancers and inappropriate social values. How are parents in Singapore to deal with such a highly sexualised music industry without alienating our kids? Read this article to find out!

Miley Cyrus has been the talk of the town recently for baring it all in her ‘Wrecking Ball’ music video, her infamous ‘twerking’ and ass-grabbing in ‘We Can’t Stop”, and just being a good girl gone bad.

In the contemporary music industry, sex sells. And it sells good. R&B pop singer Rihanna joins the social media buzz and has caused widespread parental outrage with her new provocative music video “Pour It Up”.

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Rihanna’s ‘pornographic’ music video outrages parents

No sane parent would want their kid to stumble upon this video.

“Pour It Up” features provocative hip-thrusting, strippers and pole dancers. Rihanna dresses in a bejewelled bikini that barely covers her bits, while singing about how the rich and hip party (“this is how we ball out”) — with alcohol, half-naked women and wads of cash. Social networking sites called it “vile”; commentators asked if it was “porn or music”; parents swore to never let their kids near this “X-rated material”.

RELATED: Miley Cyrus Vs Sinead O’Connor

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Rihanna gives us an unpleasant view of her bare rear-end in this sexually provocative music video.

In this thriving industry of provocative music videos with repetitive sexual lyrics, parents fear kids may model themselves on pop icons such as Rihanna or Miley. Another very real parental fear is that the lyrics of a song like ‘Pour It Up’ teach youngsters unwanted ‘values’. It also introduces them to the ideas of alcohol bingeing and spending money on strippers in sleazy clubs. Many parents have called for this video to be banned on Youtube to prevent their children from stumbling upon it.

Sexuality in Pop music has been around for awhile

Do music videos like ‘Pour It Up’ or ‘We Can’t Stop’ still really surprise us? Provocative videos and lyrics with sexual connotations have been around for some time.

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In ‘Telephone’, can we even call Lady Gaga’s pieces of tape, clothes?

Britney Spears’ mildly suggestive ‘I’m a slave for you’ has been around since 2001. But her video is nothing compared to Katy Perry’s “fireworks” breasts; 50 Cent’s “I’ll let you lick the lollipop” lyrics in “Candy Shop”;  Robin Thicke’s naked girls in “Blurred Lines”; or the infamous Lady Gaga and her antics. In pop music, the boundaries keep being pushed further towards pornography.

Unfortunately, sex catches our attention and the media moguls know it. These music videos are just a small part of the wider spectrum of suggestive ads, television shows and films that our impressionable children can be exposed to if we, as parents, are not careful.

RELATED: Television shows your kids should not be watching

Protecting your children goes beyond a ban

“Let’s ban this video,” cry countless of worried parents. But the music industry has degraded to a point that you’d just have to ban almost half of all videos. Banning is not the answer. It will merely make it even more prevalent. The bigger question  to ask is how the music industry seems to have brainwashed young, female artists that only sex sells and that they are somehow empowered by baring their bits.

We know that if we restrict our children from watching these videos it will only fuel the fire. Once a rebellious child myself, I remember the urge to do exactly the thing I’m told not to. “Why not?” was my blanket logic.

If your child doesn’t watch such videos, thank your lucky stars. If he or she does, then help them see the difference between good and bad values reflected in music. Point out good singers to them: Adele didn’t need to strip or dance provocatively with her true powerhouse talent.

RELATED: Kids and social media, good or bad?

We should also give our kids more credit than we do. Many teenage girls expressed displeasure at their idol “Hannah Montana”,  they too think that Miley Cyrus’ video was distasteful and that they “didn’t like her anymore”. The only thing we can do to shelter our little ones from music garbage is to help them realise who the good role models in the music industry are, and what is merely cheap entertainment. We then have to trust them make the right choices.

How do you protect your child from inappropriate music videos, movies, ads etc? Let us know by leaving a comment. We’d love to hear from you!

Watch Rihanna’s ‘Pour It Up’ music video here: 

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Written by

Estelle Lim

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