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Baby Let’s Not Ban the Song

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Baby Let’s Not Ban the Song

USA Today

USA Today

USA Today

Ela Gonzales, Co Editor-in-Chief

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Every year during the winter time, radio stations begin to play the infamous duet between a man and a woman “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”. Recently, in the wake of the #MeToo movement, radio stations across the country have begun to ban the song. According to Entertainment Weekly, “The song details a back-and-forth, traditionally between a man and a woman, where the man tries to convince a woman to stay the night despite her continued protests, saying, ‘The answer is no’”.

Throughout the song the woman does display some signs of what some might consider her being uncomfortable. At one point, she questions “What’s in this drink?” and proceeds to call the male “very pushy”. Some victims of the #MeToo movement can argue that the song can be “triggering” to hear. Many find the lyrics “rapey’ and “creepy”.

Although these are very valid points, to ban a classic song like this from the radio is unacceptable. With this mindset, almost any song can be considered “creepy” and should be “banned”. The 2014 song “Animals” by Maroon 5 received a lot of radio play that year and even went on to peak number three on the US Billboard Hot 100. The song was featured in multiple advertisements such as a commercial for the 2015 Kia Soul and television shows such as Dancing with the Stars. Rolling Stone even ranked the song at number 32 on its year-end list of the best songs of that year. The song overall did really well. However, a closer look at the lyrics and a listener might think that the singer is not doing well. He sings “Maybe you think that you can hide, I can smell your scent for miles. Just like animals.” These lyrics are far more disturbing than any word in “Baby, it’s Cold Outside”.

The only case in which I can see the reasoning behind pulling a song from the radio is the infamous song “Pumped Up Kicks” by the band Foster The People. The song is extremely catchy and was huge back in 2010. However back in 2011, multiple radio stations pulled the song due to its lyrics depicting a school shooting. The hook of the song goes, “You’d better run, better run, outrun my gun.” Due to the amount of shootings that have taken place in the past few years, I can see why any radio station would ban this song even in this present day. Hearing those lyrics might bring back up emotions or sentiments to victims of school shootings or even friends or family of victims who have passed.

“Baby it’s Cold Outside” has romantic undertones like most songs on the radio, including “Animals”. It’s easy to have different interpretations of songs with romantic undertones. What one person may find “sweet’ and “cute”, another might find “creepy” and “disturbing”. The song  “Pumped Up Kicks” however, is pretty straightforward with its message. The writer of the song, Mark Foster, has admitted in the past that it is about a school shooter. In an interview with Rolling Stone back in 2011, the singer-songwriter mentioned how when writing the song he was “trying to get inside the head of an isolated, psychotic kid”.

Many students in our own school are having their own mixed opinions on this debate.  

When asked if she believes “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” should be banned from radio stations, Senior Melanie Chamorro responded with, “No, because its a traditional song and it’s a classic. It can get pretty cold outside. She did have the option to go, but she was just charmed by him. It was like a playful thing.”

Senior Kayla Brathwaite agreed with Chamorro, “It’s a classic. It’d be like banning ‘All I Want For Christmas’ from the radio. It just shouldn’t be done!”

However one student, who requested to not be named, disagreed, “Yes it should be banned. Because some people who have been in uncomfortable sexual situations might find it desensitizing to have a song about essentially keeping a woman hostage in his home on the radio. It might make women feel like it’s their fault that they got harassed because they didn’t outwardly say no.” Although this may be true, at the end of the day, no one’s being forced to listen to anything. If you dislike a song on the radio, you can simply change the radio station. There’s no law telling anyone that they must listen to “Baby, it’s Cold Outside” during the winter time. If “Baby it’s Cold Outside” is going to get banned because of one interpretation of its lyrics, then you might as well ban 90% of the songs on the radio while you’re at it.

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