Is Everyone A “Hater” Now? [Blog]
Toronto, ON – When did everyone become a “hater?” And I don’t mean it the way you might think. I don’t mean it like now all of a sudden everyone is “hating.” What I mean is, when did that label become the de facto term to dismiss any and all critics and their criticism? What happened to “keeping it real?” Or “checkin that wack shit?”
I feel like the act of commenting negatively on another person’s actions, raps, style or demeanor all of a sudden carries this bad connotation. As if the only people allowed to make calls like that are the professional haters – like Perez Hilton or Kat Williams. It’s like anytime anyone with any status comments negatively about anyone else with any status, “he’s a hater” gets thrown back like a home run ball at Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs fans traditionally throw back home runs by the visiting teams as a form of disrespect). All of a sudden, that opinion is invalidated because he or she is a “hater.” And nobody takes a “hater” seriously right? A “hater” wakes up in the morning looking for things to shit on. They dream about snarky punch lines that tear apart their rival’s fashion sense. They spend their days manifesting negative energy and transforming it into opinionated hateration. A “hater” is not to be trusted, or listened to. Right?
My problem is not that I’m afraid to say what I think because I might be called a “hater.” My problem is that the term is thrown around so loosely that it discourages and more often discredits otherwise legitimate criticism or critique. There must be some grey area between “dickriding” and “hating.” Some allusive ground where our culture can be held to certain standards? Remember when telling somebody they were wack, when they truly were, was a matter of necessity? Like if he can’t rap, tell him. If a performance seemed sloppy, call them on it. If a record sounded played out, explain why.
It seems to me the difference comes in terms of the intent. Is the intention of the individual to simply tear someone down for the sake of tearing them down? Or is the intention to raise the bar by pointing out something that doesn’t make the grade?
I agree, when people become hypersensitive to the actions and words of everyone around them – without provocation – they may be a “hater.” But the rest of the time, opinions – positive and negative – are the reigns steering debates that often lead to the evolution of style, substance and lifestyle. And for that reason, the chronic over-use of “hater” delegitimizes the negative critiques. And we’re left with yes-men with softball questions and hype men posing as cultural commentators.
Pay attention to your intentions, but don’t be afraid to say something is wack, when it’s wack.
Editor’s Note: Special thanks to Duxx of Concrete Guerilla Clothing for helping me reach this conclusion.
The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the author and are not necessarily those of HipHopCanada or its affiliates.
Written by Jonathon “Bizz” Brown for HipHopCanada
Tags: Jonathon "Bizz" Brown
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