Hey, @ArianaGrande, Let’s Talk

You say you’ve been ‘objectified,’ but what does that mean?

Pop singer Ariana Grande (left) and her boyfriend, hiphop star Mac Miller (right).
Part of a message Ariana Grande sent to her fans Tuesday.

About four or five years ago, celebrity magazines got into the habit of asking actresses and female pop singers about “the F-word.” Are you a feminist? And what does feminism mean to you? As the liberal media began gearing up for the 2016 presidential campaign, with Hillary Clinton considered a shoo-in for the Democrat nomination, it seemed that every other issue — foreign policy, the economy, whatever — had faded into irrelevance, and the only thing anyone really cared about was feminism. Because I’ve been covering politics, culture and media for a long time, the partisan purpose behind this was obvious to me. So every time I read some idiot blogger rattling on about whether the latest Taylor Swift album or the newest TV sitcom was “feminist,” my response was a cynical eye-roll: Politics. Unfortunately, most young people don’t treat this stuff with the jaded indifference it deserves, and now we have a former Nickelodeon child star preaching a sermon about “objectification”:

In a message posted to Twitter Tuesday night, Grande shared that she and her beau, The Way collaborator Mac Miller, were picking up food when they had a run-in with one of Miller’s fans. “He was loud and excited and by the time M was seated in the driver’s seat, he was literally almost in the car with us,” Grande explained. “I thought all of this was cute and exciting until he said, ‘Ariana is sexy as hell, man. I see you. I see you hitting that!”
For Grande, being discussed as if she were not present — and being reduced to a “piece of meat” in the process — left her feeling “sick and objectified.” . . .
“Things like (this) happen all the time and are the kinds of moments that contribute to women’s sense of fear and inadequacy,” she wrote. . . .
In response to a fan who argued that Grande objectified herself in her music, Grande outlined the difference between women practicing agency over their bodies and their sexuality and men viewing them as parts and encroaching on their autonomy.
“Women expressing sexuality is often mistaken for ‘hi come disrespect me,’ and that’s just not the case,” Grande wrote. “Women (and men) can express themselves however they’d like!!! Even loving sex!! This is not an invitation to be disrespected.”

You can click here and here to see the full text of Ms. Grande’s sermon.

Mac Miller and Ariana Grande perform their duet ‘My Favorite Part.’

Well, is being “objectified” Ms. Grande’s worst problem? Or is her bigger problem the fact she’s dating this scruffy dude with tattoos all over him?

Far be it from me to say that Mac Miller (neé Malcolm James McCormick) doesn’t have talent, because obviously he does, but what’s up with white boys doing this tattoo-covered ghetto thug style? Like, this upper-middle-class kid from Pittsburgh — his daddy’s an architect — is supposed to be gangsta? ’Cause he’s been rollin’ with his homies in the ’hood since his bar-mitzvah?

Look, I don’t want to accuse Mac Miller of “cultural appropriation,” I’m just saying he’s inauthentic. And also scruffy. He needs to shave that beard, do something with his hair and buy himself a decent suit of clothes instead of dressing like every other dude-bro loser hanging out in the college dorm.

You can do better, Ariana, but let’s talk about Mac’s punk-ass fans, OK?

Why do you think your boyfriend’s fan felt he could disrespect you? Isn’t it because Mac’s style — his tattooed hiphop motif — expresses an affinity for underclass culture, where disrespectful attitudes toward women are part of the whole swaggering urban Bad Boy image? If your boyfriend is representing himself as a player, doesn’t that imply that you’re the game?

Excuse me for being judgmental here, Ms. Grande, but if you are so concerned about your reputation, why on Earth are you dating a scruffy hiphopper with tattoos from his neck to his knuckles? And since we’re talking about respect, Ms. Grande, let’s quote a bit of Mac Miller’s work, shall we?

Find a big butt bitch, somewhere get my nuts kissed.
That’s the way it goes when you party just like I do.
Bitches on my dick that used to brush me off in high school..
Take over the world when I’m on my Donald Trump shit.
Look at all this money, ain’t that some shit.

So sang your boyfriend in 2011, and what do you expect from his fans?

“I am not a piece of meat that a man gets to utilize for his pleasure,” you say, complaining that you feel “objectified” by expressions “that contribute to women’s sense of fear and inadequacy.” You’re saying you’re not one of those “bitches” your boyfriend was rapping about in 2011? Are you enforcing some kind of double-standard, Ms. Grande, where your boyfriend can get rich rapping about “bitches,” while you demand respect from his fans?

“It hurts my heart that so many young people are so comfortable enough using these phrases and objectifying women with such ease,” you say.

Make ’em say “ow,” make ’em say “oh”
The hoes that tell me “yes,” the same ones that tell you “no.”

Who’s that rapping about “hoes”? Yeah — Mac Miller, baby.

Ariana, I’m not trying to say you should dump your scruffy boyfriend just because he did that bitches-and-hoes stuff back in the day. Rappers gotta do what rappers do, I guess, and he ain’t the worst of them. Rather, my point is, why do you have to bring all this Gender Studies jargon into it?

What do feminists mean when they say a man is “objectifying” a woman? Isn’t this rhetoric just a way for man-haters to demonize men for being normal?

It is not controversial to say that men are, uh, responsive to visual stimuli, or to put it another way, “when a girl walks in with an itty bitty waist and a round thing in your face, you get sprung.” You other brothers can’t deny, etc. Normal male sexual behavior involves a response of the autonomic nervous system to the, uh, stimuli. This response involves vasodilation and increased blood flow to the corpora cavernosa and corpus spongiosum. It’s science, sweetheart.

Understand that my purposes here are educational, Ms. Grande, as you seem to be rather confused about what “being in a relationship” means. Feminists would have you believe that a man who desires to “utilize” a woman “for his pleasure” cannot also treat her “with love and respect.” This is what students of logic call a false dilemma. It also echoes the Manichean heresy, a species of Gnosticism, and is therefore an anti-Christian belief. The conjugal union of man and wife within marriage— becoming “one flesh” (Mark 10:8) — is “honourable” (Hebrews 13:4), so that the pleasure between husband and wife is a blessing for which we should be grateful to God. (Can I get an “amen”?)

If a man truly desires a “relationship” of “love and respect” with a woman, then he should marry her. Does anything prevent Mac Miller from booking a couple of first-class tickets to Vegas and taking you to get married at one of those little chapels there, Ms. Grande? I think not. So what’s he doing?

Are you letting yourself be used by that tattoo-covered suburban white-boy rapper, Ms. Grande? Are you just another one of his “bitches” and “hoes”?

Maybe I wouldn’t want my daughter to marry a scruffy punk like Mac Miller, but I sure as heck wouldn’t want her to be a pump-and-dump for him. Rather than giving us a Gender Studies sermon about “women’s sense of fear and inadequacy,” Ms. Grande, maybe you need to have a talk with your boyfriend. Tell him he can either “put a ring on it” or else kiss your pretty self good-bye.

Feminism won’t solve your problem, Ms. Grande. You’d be a lot smarter to listen to that guy whose birthday we recently celebrated.

Don’t preach me any sermons, ma’am, or I’ll preach right back at you.

Can I get an “amen,” dear brothers and sisters? Can I get a witness?

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