The double standard the female rappers face in the music industry

Female rap icons, such as Cardi B, are being “canceled” for no good reason

Billboard | Photo Courtesy
Cardi B faced immense backlash for her performance of “WAP” at the Grammy’s.

Over the past two years, female rappers have been on a tremendous rise to the top of the charts. In the past few years alone, rappers including Cardi B, Megan Thee Stallion, Saweetie, and City Girls (Yung Miami and JT) have all released chart-topping records. However, as their fame rises, so does their criticism.

Recently at this year’s Grammy Awards, Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion performed their record-breaking, chart-topping hit “WAP”. While the track is far from tame and does deliver a certain element of shock, the steamy performance was compared to far worse things by her critics.

While she accepted some of the criticism, Cardi B declared that most male rappers don’t face the same struggles. With that being said, do her accusations stand? From an unbiased point of view, female rappers have most certainly faced a more challenging rise to the top.

Male rappers have engaged in similar performances and acts over the years that have been hailed as “luxurious” and “king status”, as a blind eye is turned. That is until a female rapper finds herself in a similar situation.

In 2017, on Kendrick Lamar’s ‘DAMN. Tour’, opening act YG brought out female strippers and poles in the middle of his set. While no person seemed to have an issue with it, as YG has aimed for this to become part of his lifestyle and public brand, it’s near-guaranteed that many would have criticized Cardi B (or any other female rapper) for bringing out male strippers and stripper poles.

Furthermore, Cardi was recently attacked on Twitter for exploring interest in purchasing a painting. While she admired the painting for its beauty, she was dragged by Armenian Twitter users for declaring her as “racist” as the painting had ties to the Ottoman Empire history.

While many would toss this story to the side, it is interesting to note that Kanye West paid $85,000 out of his pocket to license a photo that was taken in Whitney Houston’s bathroom after an alleged drug binge in 2006 for Pusha T’s ‘DAYTONA’ artwork. Despite it making headlines, few appeared to take issue with the move, apart from Houston’s estate.

Cardi’s desire to purchase a painting is strikingly similar to West’s purchase of a deceased singer’s drug binge, with a double standard rising between male and female rappers. While many would argue that men should be receiving an equal amount of criticism from audiences and the general public, it may be easier to ease back on the criticism of Cardi, Meg, and others.

When an artist can use their creative outlet in full, such as the “WAP” performance, no matter the criticism, they’re able to reach full potential in an artistic space.

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