Kids Are More Likely To See Cardi B Grinding On A Pole Than Dumbo or Peter Pan
By Ian Haworth
On Sunday evening, audiences watched the 63rd Grammy awards in Los Angeles. Hosted by Trevor Noah, the semi-socially distanced ceremony celebrated last year’s musical heroes, with notable awards going to Beyoncé Knowles, Taylor Swift, and Billie Eilish.
However, social media and headlines alike were dominated by one topic: Cardi B’s performance of her hit song, “WAP.” Alongside Megan Thee Stallion on stage for the first time, they brought the monumentally popular song to life.
Media members couldn’t celebrate the performance more enthusiastically if they tried. CNN’s Chloe Melas described it as a “very sex-positive performance.” “They gloriously twerked and strutted and owned the stage in Barbarella-esque outfits, referencing female empowerment, sexual pride and delivering undoubtedly one of the most memorable Grammy performances of all time,” she wrote.
People magazine described the performance as “provocative,” saying that “If it existed, the trophy for the night’s most jaw-dropping moment would’ve gone to Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion.”
Variety viewed the onstage spectacle as “jaw-dropping,” saying that “the song’s message of sexual empowerment remained clear.”
For those who aren’t aware, the song’s message begins with the lines “I said, certified freak, seven days a week, wet-a** p**** make that pull-out game weak,” and only continues to further demonstrate its Shakespearean lyrical genius. “Bring a bucket and a mop for this wet-a** p****,” “Spit in my mouth, look in my eyes, this p**** is wet, come take a dive,” and “Gobble me, swallow me, drip down the side of me,” are just a few highlights. Perhaps rivaling only Oscar Wilde in terms of creative artistry, the masterpiece ends with “There’s some whores in this house. There’s some whores in this house.”
These lines were delivered as Cardi B gyrated on a stripper pole, before joining Megan Thee Stallion on a bed to writhe around, mimicking sexual acts.
While conservatives are mocked for their “pearl clutching,” it’s important to understand that the issue here is not necessarily the content of the “song,” or even the manner in which it was performed. The problem is the context of the society in which it is lauded.
WAP, which if you haven’t already guessed is an acronym for “Wet A** P****,” exists in a world which celebrates such performances as expressions of “sex positivity” and “female empowerment.” This is the same world which now seeks to erase certain Dr. Seuss books for apparently portraying people in “ways that are hurtful and wrong,” in which Disney hides Peter Pan and Dumbo from children due to “outdated” depictions, and in which French cartoon skunks are canceled for perpetuating “rape culture.”
It is simply impossible to argue that Dr. Seuss, Dumbo, and Pepe Le Pew must be eradicated from our society for various moral offenses, but that Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s performance on Sunday evening is one of empowerment that must be celebrated.
If Pepe Le Pew is canceled for perpetuating rape culture, for example, then it is absurd to claim that Cardi B is not perpetuating that same supposed culture by — albeit willingly — presenting herself as an easily accessible sexual object on a stripper pole as men in the audience cheer her on.
We are witnessing the growth of a culture where children are often more likely to watch Cardi B grind on a pole than the Dumbo or Peter Pan movies, all while the former stripper tells audience members that she wants them “to park that big Mack truck right in this little garage.”