Cruel and Unusual Punishment

Categories: Noise Complaint
Tragedy struck the hip-hop world last Sunday, when rapper M-Bone (of the group Cali Swag District) was killed in a drive-by shooting in Inglewood, California. As of this writing, the  investigation is ongoing, and police have not released the names of any potential suspects, nor any possible motives for the killing.

This week, Up on the Sun cartoonist Robbie Pfeffer offers a tongue-in-cheek, hypothetical scenario: that M-Bone's killer is caught, brought to trial, and offers the defense that he was driven crazy by Cali Swag's infectiously catchy hit, "Teach Me How to Dougie."

This is an unimaginably tough time for M-Bone's family, friends, and fans, who are preparing for the 22 year-old late rapper's funeral. Some might say it's too soon to crack any kinds of jokes, but others also say, "Laughter is the best medicine" -- especially when something so seemingly senseless happens, and people find themselves scratching their heads and asking "Why?"

So with condolences to M-Bone's family, we bring you this week's Noise Complaint.

Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help
young kleezy
young kleezy

@font-face { font-family: "MS 明朝";}@font-face { font-family: "MS 明朝";}@font-face { font-family: "Cambria";}p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: Cambria; }.MsoChpDefault { font-family: Cambria; }div.WordSection1 { page: WordSection1; }

I’m really glad you mentioned satire, guy.  I have a satirical narrative for you.  A relatively well-educated person capable ofseeing base entertainment for what it is and shielding himself from itintentionally is flipping through a magazine his sense of culture wascomfortable with and is outraged at a comic. This magazine has maintained a readership for its ability to keep afinger on the pulse of relatively emergent popular culture, and has picked upsome young artists as well as bloggers who pull from relevant materials in thegeneral local scene.  One thing ourperson may be uncomfortable with is how the emergent popular culture expressesitself through a seemingly crude intentional arbitrariness and finds humor inthe irony of lampooning baseness through spot on, sometimes lethargic,imitation.   The lines often blur as inall parody. 


The only thing a particular rap artist was known for was asingle song that was repetitious to comic absurdity, and that artist met asudden end that seemed as culturally meaningless as his introduction to popularculture.  His existence to most was voidof meaning because culture was unable and unwilling to impress the importanceof his life and this allows for commentators to arbitrarily dispose of hischaracter.  As nihilistic as it sounds,this is the nature of a good portion of online media, and the comic our personwas outraged with lampooned that nihilism through parody. 


This person lashed out at the creator on principle.  He was disgusted by the tacit apology fornihilism that the comic parody seemed to represent and struck out onprinciple.  He did this without anyirony.  Our person rejected the idea oflaughing at death, no matter how commodified and disposable the rapper may beeven to him, but didn’t take into account the purposefully empty nature of thepiece or the arbitrariness the work intended to parody. 


By the end, his action only added to the irony.  He became puffy-chested and his frustrationnot only made the intention of the work more apparent, but launched intoad-hominem against the cartoonist.  Thepiece became more humorous because it had an effect.  One can only hope that the person eventuallyrecognized that this is the purpose of satire. 



I believe that the creator of this awesome cartoon is a snarky, suburban asshole who does, in fact, find murder and death(on occasion, under certain circumstances) funny.

And as you have admitted to not having any knowledge about the song, let me fill you in: the chorus consists of the phrase "All my bitches love it" on repeat for around 5 mins.

I'd also like to inform you that this was posted in an on- line music blog, and not in print.

You also admit to being out of touch, as well as old.

why did you even respond?

Good day sir

Some Guy
Some Guy

Okay, I'll bite.  I have no idea who Cali Swag District are, and maybe I should be grateful that I have no fecking idea what Dougie-ing is.  With that out of the way:

Congratulations on successfully pandering to the lowest common denominator by actually being the lowest common denominator!  I would call this greedy and opportunistic yellow journalism, but "journalism" isn't what's going on here.  Satire implies the use of wit and/or humor, both of which are lacking here - and in the whole of these asinine "Noise Complaint" cartoons - so that can't be it, either.  

So, if it's not journalism or satire, wtf is it?  Pray tell.  Because it's tasteless, tacky, and cheap; and it appears as if you're using the MURDER of someone to draw traffic to your retarded cartoon.  Only snarky little suburban assholes find murder and death funny.  Maybe that's your target demographic, I have no idea.  

But, fuck me, I'm just old and bitter.  I remember when the New Times was a respectable publication, and every few days I come back here hoping to find it returning to form, and every few days, I'm disappointed.  

Some Guy
Some Guy

WHERE something was published has no bearing on whether or not it's not repugnant.  The work stands on its own lack of merits, whether published in The New Yorker, Highlights for Children, or on tumblr.  I'll freely admit to being out of touch to whatever passes for pop music (and old, as in old enough to know better); however, I can quote Sartre in English and his native tongue, I can explain M3's (still-relevant, no matter what the government says) relation to inflation to even a nitwit like you, and I can find Gaza on a map.  So, yes, out of touch with inconsequential, trivial bullshit like "Dougie"-ing, for sure, and happily.  Out of touch with humanity, not at all.  And I don't care if the above statements make me sound like an egomaniacal braggart.  Not knowing what "Dougie"-ing is can hardly be the barometer to judge someone's in-touch-ness unless you're a juvenile, self-absorbed fool.

I don't care if the song says "All my bitches love it" on repeat for 174 minutes, that doesn't mean that this guy getting murdered is something to joke about.  I read this blog to glean information about music, because I do love me some music - I believe it's the most primitive, yet also the most advanced form of expression that we've got, and that's fucking sexy.  But a little piece of me dies every time I click on a link and get putrid drivel like this cartoon, because, a) I'll never get those 45 seconds of my life back (and life is short); and,  b) somewhere out there, there are people who think they're artists with something to say, but they've clearly put in no time as a human being, a thinker, or a creator, and some dipshit editor is all too happy to validate their myopic views of things that are mainly meaningless by saying, "Sure!  Let's publish this cockroach diarrhea!  It'll be great!"  

There are so many wonderful things about UOTS - I especially dig the "You Asked For It" pieces - that publishing absolute bullshit like this stoopid cartoon degrades the rest of the content.

That is all.

Good day to you.

Now Trending

Phoenix Concert Tickets

From the Vault