Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” was one of the biggest, and most controversial, hits of 2013. Now that we’re in 2014, it’s continuing to cause controversy.
BostonMagazine.com reports that students at Boston University are petitioning for Robin’s March 4 concert at the school to be canceled, citing the lyrics of “Blurred Lines” as the reason. The Change.org petition, which was organized by a group called the Humanists of Boston University, accuses the song’s lyrics of being misogynistic, and celebrating “having sex with women against their will.”
According to the petition, the line in the song that goes “I know you want it” uses “non-consensual language.” The petition continues, “While watching the extremely explicit video, the insinuations grow from subtle to explicit to obnoxious.” The video for “Blurred Lines,” which was directed by a woman, features Robin, Pharrell Williams and T.I. dancing with topless models.
The petition also claims that the song promotes “rape culture,” declaring that the song’s cultural context is “systemic patriarchy and sexual oppression.” It also states that, as an institution with a strong history of feminism, Boston University shouldn’t allow the concert to go forward.
“It is a dishonor to our feminist history to symbolically idolize Robin Thicke by allowing him to perform his misogynist music at our university,” the petition reads. “We kindly suggest that BU cancel Thicke’s performance, refund any ticket sales, and apologize for insinuating that sexism, or any form of baseless discrimination, is permissible at our institution.”
As of Friday at 10:00 a.m. ET, just over 1,500 people had signed the petition.
A spokesperson for the university told the student paper The Daily Free Press that such a concert ban is unlikely, because the university didn’t organize the concert; it’s simply being held at the arena on its campus. In addition, noted the spokesperson, “You’re talking about a college campus where it’s anathema to ban things. We respect our students’ views, but those are those students’ views.”
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