Today in discussion, our group talked about how the school shooting article addressed music choices as a predicting factor for aggression. While I personally don’t believe that what people listen to indicate their actions, it makes me listen to the lyrics of songs more closely. We said that the mention of music was a weak part of the article, but it may have a valid point in some aspects. If listening to something for an extended period of time, people can become numb to the graphic images presented in some lyrics.
One of my favorite bands from middle school and high school, My Chemical Romance, features graphic lyrics in their songs. One that I really starting thinking about today after our class is called Teenagers; these are the lyrics:
“They’re gonna clean up your looks with all the lies in the books to make a citizen out of you. Because they sleep with a gun, and keep an eye on you, son, so they can watch all the things you do. Because the drugs never work, they gonna give you a smirk’, cause they got methods of keeping you clean. They gonna rip up your heads, your aspirations to shreds. Another cog in the murder machine. They say that teenagers scare the living **** out of me. They could care less as long as someone’ll bleed. So darken your clothes or strike a violent pose, maybe they’ll leave you alone, but not me. The boys and girls in the clique, the awful names that they stick, you’re never gonna fit in much, kid. But if you’re troubled and hurt, what you got under your shirt, we’ll make them pay for the things that they did.”
In these particular lines, there’s mention of drugs, bullying, and retaliation through aggression (with a gun possibly). Through listening through lines such as these, it could be possible that people see these images as less unimaginable and actually come to the point where they can visualize the scenes. In this way, they can come closer to actually committing crimes like school shootings; maybe the paper did have a point about music and aggression after all.