Controversy in Country Music

I was listening to the radio in my truck a few days ago, and the broadcaster was discussing the controversy that occurred when Garth Brooks released the music video for his song ‘The Thunder Rolls’ in 1991. The video was named the Country Music Association’s Music Video of the Year, but despite its success, Brooks encountered a lot of backlash for the content he chose to depict in the video for the song. Brooks was criticized because he chose for his video to portray an occurrence of domestic violence between a disloyal husband and his revenge-seeking wife, and the criticism was so prevalent within the country music community that the Nashville Network and Country Music Television proceeded to ban the airing of the video. Thankfully, there was backlash in regards to such ban, and other country music radio stations actually developed petitions to bring the video back into public access. Numerous women’s shelters ensured their voices were heard as well within the midst of the controversy, and they supported Brooks and the realistic violence shown in his video.

What really perturbs me about this circumstance is the criticism Brooks encountered for choosing to display a very real and widely occurring dilemma in the lives of many married individuals. Brooks was attacked for attempting to bring attention to the severity of domestic violence as opposed to being praised and credited for drawing attention to the issue.

Does anyone else identify a problem here?

So, from my own personal understanding, it is apparently wrong to bring attention to an issue that is already overlooked and ignored in society, but it is acceptable to produce and release music videos that hypersexualize women and display them in a position that is inferior to men.

Apparently it is furthermore wrong to attempt to give a voice to thousands of women who are victims of domestic abuse, and men as well, because both sexes are impacted by this issue, but it is acceptable to produce and release music videos that romanticize and glorify drug and alcohol use.

I think it was quite bold and respectable of Garth Brooks to bring attention to the prevalence and severity of domestic violence that exists between thousands of couples across the globe. Insight is so important when it comes to gender-affiliated issue, and I think Brooks nailed it on the head with his creation of this music video.



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