It’s very common for people to blame the wealthy and privileged for the ills of society. Sure there are many people who seek domination, control and power, and attain those things by manipulating the psychology of the common man. There have always been people like that. And there have always been people who willfully give up their freedom to these people in exchange for comfort and security. It’s all a choice. But this post isn’t about that. This post is designed to illustrate the fact that people at all levels of society have the same struggles, and they are just as human as anyone else.
One more thing, blaming a select group for all the problems of society is exactly the tactic that Hitler used in blaming the Jews. It’s also the tactic that Pol Pot used in blaming the intelligentsia for exploiting the working class, and subsequently killing a quarter of his own population. Conspiracies are nothing new (not to imply that none exist). That’s a very dangerous thing to do. Just like at every other level of society, there are good people and there are bad people at the top.
There are those who are in positions of power, or are famous or wealthy because they excelled at something. It wasn’t something they necessarily sought, they were thrust into those positions because they had a passion for what they do.
Recently, I have been on a huge Eminem kick, and it is spurred me to write this post. After listening to tons of his music and reading lyrics and listening to interviews, I realized something that can be applicable to any person at any level. As recently as a month ago, I wrote him off with the rest of famous people as being superficial and possibly a pawn to some evil agenda, and just completely self serving.
But after giving him an objective listen, I realized that he’s actually a genius. All of the hate-filled songs and “bad” messages, I realized, are his way of channelling all that negativity into a positive outlet for himself. He talks about rape and murder and satan and a lot of really dark stuff, but he uses music as his outlet for all of that instead of going out and actually committing those acts. He even says in Guts Over Fear, “But it wasn’t until I put the pain in songs learned who to aim it on
That I made a spark, started to spit hard as shit”
Learned how to harness it while the reins were off”
That’s what he’s been doing since the beginning, is channelling all the fucked up shit inside him into music. It’s not his fault that people misinterpret it or glamorize it. It’s there fault. He’s being an honest person and admitting that he has dark parts of himself, and expresses that through songs.
I realized he is like a modern day Shakespeare (After all Shakespeare talked about a lot of dark stuff), and he’s famous because he is extremely gifted at something. It’s not his fault. On the other side of it, a lot of his biggest songs have extremely positive messages, and he says things in such a subtle and poetic way that most people don’t notice it. But I think they still get it on a subconscious level.
Read the lyrics to “Guts Over Fear,” “Going Through Changes,” “The Way I Am” (pretty self-explanatory messages in those if you listen…) or even stuff off of his old albums like “The Real Slim Shady.” That whole song is about being authentic and being yourself despite the control that other people and society impose on you. if you look at the end line, he says, “there’s a slim shady in all of us… let’s all stand up.”
Recently, his music has been a huge inspiration and motivation to me, because I can really identify (as most young men can) all the struggles he goes through. To me his main messages are about owning your dark side and not being afraid to express it (which is misinterpreted as him being a bad person who is telling little kids to do evil things), overcoming adversity, and trying to help people to understand the same things that he understands about society and how enslaved people are.
But if I didn’t get passed judging him by the front he puts up in order to make himself palatable and cool to the masses, I wouldn’t have seen the core of his message. He really is a genius. And I actually feel bad for him for the position he is in. I don’t demonize him. I’d rather be anonymous and poor than be famous. It’s almost a curse. Everyone has an opinion about you. And I realized that some of these people are suffering as much as anyone else.
Even though it is a relatively small example, this has taught me a valuable lesson: that making assumptions about people can give you a completely false interpretation of them. And there are plenty of others examples of people just like this, both famous and anonymous, who are completely misunderstood.
“See I’m a poet to some, a regular modern-day Shakespeare
Jesus Christ, the King of these Latter-Day Saints here
To shatter the picture in which of that as they paint me as
As a monger of hate, satanist, scatter-brained atheist
But that ain’t the case, see it’s a matter of taste”