Singer/rapper Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion recently released a song named WAP. Chances are you have heard it/heard about it. If you haven't, you can listen to it here

As you can tell, the lyrics of the song are bold. Something, that has invited a hell lot of criticism for the artists.  

They have been called 'bad influence', 'vulgar' and many other harsher things, which I will avoid going into right now.

My question: Why? The song is about two women owning their sexuality and terms often used against the gender. And yes, they are talking about sex; but, that's kind of the point of the song. So what really is the problem? 

Conditioning is what, expecting women to feel what they are told, is what.

cardi B and megan in WAP
Source: Billboard

Now, since the matter blew up, we decided to decode it a bit. 

The controversy around WAP picked momentum after comedian Russell Brand uploaded a YouTube video, titled WAP with Cardi B & Megan Thee Stallion: Feminist Masterpiece Or P*rn?.

With respect to the 'male gaze', a commonly used tool in art to get attention, he pointed out the 'flaws' in the video, saying that it was still catering to the same ideas:

I am saying that, in a sense, it's still the same metric it's still the same aesthetic, it's still the same values, it's still the same ideals. It's still ultimately a sort of capitalist objectification and commodification of, in this case, the female.
russell brand on cardi b wap video
Source: YouTube/Russell Brand

For this, he received a lot of criticism and people called him out for mansplaining the concept to women artsists. 

Before Russell, James P. Bradley, a Republican, had tweeted saying 'this is what happens when kids don't have a strong father figure'.

Adding that he respects Cardi B's right to freedom of speech. 

Which is an odd chronology. If you actually 'respect' someone's freedom of saying what they want to say, you criticise them respectfully, too. You don't say they grew up without a father figure. 

Anyhow, a week later, he called the song 'trash' and that was that.

This demands some introspection: About the society's conditioning of how women are supposed to behave and the leeway it gives to men. 

If you have been a fan of English rap music, you know that the lyrics used by the artists are often explicit. 

The genre is based on that. But while male rappers often dodge the scrutiny, the same cannot be said for the women. 

eminem rap music
Source: Vice

In fact, explicit is just one part of it. Men like Eminem and Snoop Dog have called women 'gold-diggers', made comments on their characters, suggested highly sexual stuff, and that is something everyone has grooved to. 

But how dare women talk about their OWN bodies? SHAME! 

wap rap song
Source: Billboard

The song uses strong words, sure, but the artists never claimed otherwise. And if you look at the lyrics, you will find that men have said a lot of stuff in their songs - about women - that has never been called 'inappropriate'. In fact, those songs have been huge hits. For instance:

Now, one can or cannot have an inclination towards this kind of music but the sheer amount of hate Cardi and Megan are getting for their song being vulgar is something unwarranted. 

But you will find it in abundance (just a reminder, even these reactions have been filtered out, from tons of others which were offensive to a disturbing degree). 

However, thankfully, the army of people supporting Cardi and Megan is also huge, and at this point, Twitter is filled with messages supporting the rappers and putting the double-standards into perspective. 

As for Cardi, this is what she had to say about the whole issue:

I always encourage people to be confident, especially when it comes to your sexuality. Some of these men are uncomfortable, they’re not even comfortable being sensual. Maybe you’re conservative, but everybody got a little freak inside them, you know? Every single person. Everybody gets horny, everybody gets a little tingle down there, you know what I’m saying. Just embrace it. Don’t be scared about it.

Megan, too, took a dig at people criticising the song, saying that the same men who are calling her out, casually say the most sexual things. Very often.

For now, the song is breaking the internet, which gives everyone associated with it, a big reason to celebrate.

The same is true for us. Not only does the song embrace sexuality, it celebrates it. And something like that, takes courage in the world we are living (as it must be evident by what happened).

Here are two women talking about their genitals, because you know what? It's okay. It's great. In a society where women are told to 'keep it dry', they are celebrating the 'wetness' in all its glory. 

cardi b and megan in wap
Source: Dazed Digital

To sum it up, in the song, the women are just expressing themselves the way they want to. You don't want to listen? Turn it off, but you don't get to take a moral high-ground just because something doesn't sit right with you.


Also, save some criticism for the male stars who regularly degrade women in their work. Stop making it a chart-buster.