Trigger warning for mentions of: s*x*al ass**lt, r*pe, homophobic and misogynistic slurs, homophobia, misogyny, lesbophobia, hate crimes, violence, murder, sexual harassment, l*nch*ng, child ab*se, dom*stic ab*se, p*d*philia, s**c*de, and supporting abusers.
“You don’t like it, then peel off, b*tch. Every last woman on Earth, I’ll kill off.”
Around the age of 13, many of my white male classmates began to develop an interest in Eminem. I was deeply bothered by this. It was not something new—I had heard some of his music from older boys—but these were my friends. I found myself engaging in long, draining conversations with them, only to be told that his music was good and that I was just judging their interests. I was, and remain, very disturbed by this interest. Why were my liberal, feminist friends supporting a man who glorifies hate crimes?
Short answer: They don’t care. Actually, they like it.
If you are a fan of his music and find yourself offended, let me explain.
Eminem has built his brand off of violence against women. Just about every Eminem song contains slurs and plotlines of harming women. One would not have to look hard; for this article, I found the most extreme instances in 37 of his songs. At the bottom of this article, I have included all of the quotes I drew from.
Since it is women he is constantly attacking, Eminem’s lyrics often detail fantasies of sexual violence. He raps about rape, domestic abuse, and murder, all of which have pointedly female victims. For example, in “Superman”, he says, “I’ll slap you off that bar stool /…/ Leave handprints all over you /…/ Put anthrax [bacterial infection] on a Tampax [tampon] and slap you till you can’t stand.”
His depictions of physical and sexual violence often target specific women, including many female celebrities. He sexualizes these women and girls (yes, children) in abusive, violent ways. He also consistently and explicitly sides with their abusers: Ray Rice, Chris Brown, O.J. Simpson, and Bobby Brown.
The two victims he writes about most extensively are his mother and his ex-wife. His depictions of violence against women often include his mother. In “Things Get Worse”, he says, “Shady let go, the h* has been choked enough, let her *ss go /…/ Strap an extension cord to her arm and electrocute her /…/ I might just scoot by and shoot my mom in the neck with rugers.” In “Kill You”, he explicitly positions himself as her rapist.
His obsession with harming his ex-wife, Kim, is incredibly extensive. He murders her in “Kim” and takes his daughter to dispose of her body in “’97 Bonnie & Clyde”. The ad-libs are actually his daughter; Eminem brought her into the studio with him to record the song about murdering her mother (whom he lied to about where he was taking their daughter). In “Superman”, he raps about stalking her (which he actually did) and describes his real-life tattoo: a headstone marked “Kim” with “Rot in Pieces” underneath it.
I cannot imagine the level of trauma these women have endured from Eminem’s constant harassment and death and rape threats. Actually, I can: in “When I’m Gone”, Eminem sings as his daughter, “‘Help Mommy, her wrists are bleeding!’” The Genius annotation by user @myoblast reads, “This is a reference to when Eminem once performed “Kim” at a concert to audience approval, all the while being aware of Kim’s presence in the crowd. This experience actually caused her to attempt suicide by slitting her wrists.”
Eminem justifies hate crimes; he also uses classic excuses given by domestic abusers. In “Kick Off (freestyle)”, he describes something as “impossible, like raping a sl*t”. In “Drips”, he raps about loving the woman whom he is abusing (throwing her off a porch, kicking her pregnant abdomen, and bending her neck back). He explains three times that she “had it coming”. In several songs, including “So Much Better”, he reemphasizes that he loves his victim, calling her a slur in the same line. He also melts sex into violence with his lyrics: “I even make the b*tches I rape c*m” (“Medicine Man”).
Eminem weaves all of this together with his constant use of slurs. His fans remain unbothered by this because they do not acknowledge misogynistic slurs as slurs. B*tch, sl*t, c*nt, wh*re, h*, th*t, and d*ke are viewed as curse words rather than slurs. In fact, I hear these words daily in the halls of Friends Select. For my non-female readers: those words, like all other slurs, are never okay to say. Not to call someone (even jokingly), not in lyrics, not quoting someone else. Not even if you’re a self-proclaimed liberal guy just joking around or calling out another guy. They are slurs. Abbreviate if you’re quoting. Otherwise, skip it.
To recap: Eminem centers all of his music on harming women. He uses misogynistic and homophobic slurs constantly, raps about brutally beating and raping women, and regularly threatens the lives and safety of his mother and ex-wife. None of this has ever stopped the wild support of his fans. I wonder, then, what will be enough?
What is the tipping point for liberal men to stop supporting Eminem? Clearly, misogyny is not. It may be better to rephrase the question. Why is Eminem’s rampant misogyny not enough for liberal men to stop supporting him?
The support Eminem receives stems from the belief that supporting him doesn’t count as bigotry. This is because, in the eyes of liberal white boys, women are no longer an oppressed group. Liberal male supporters of Eminem believe that they get to decide who is still truly subjugated. They feel completely comfortable making this distinction on behalf of oppressed groups because they have convinced themselves that they are fighting for the cause. There is a huge difference between being an ally and feeling as though you have the expertise to speak for marginalized groups (more expertise, even, than the people in those groups).
This behavior also speaks to the performative activism many liberal white men pride themselves on. They have learned what kinds of activism to look like they care about and which they can allow themselves to “indulge” in. It is fake, shallow activism and should be regarded as such. These liberal white males look at activism as something to be cashed in.
This can easily be seen in the excuses they give when confronted about their interest in Eminem. Over the years, I have been told by many of his fans that they only listen to it for the beat, which, if they’re looking to excuse his glorification of rape, is a very weak reason. From those who do not support him, I regularly hear, “I don’t like what he says, but you have to admit he’s a musical genius.” Actually, I don’t! I don’t have to look for the value in a violently misogynistic celebrity normalizing bigotry for his audience. Lastly, I have heard that Eminem has changed. This is just untrue. One look at his most recent album (2020) will tell you all you need to know. The first song begins with the sound effect of “a woman screaming and being stabbed to death” (source).
Fans of Eminem are rape apologists and support the glorification of domestic abuse and hate crimes against women. There is no easy way to say this. They choose not to acknowledge misogynistic slurs as slurs and rape and sexual assault as hate crimes.
For any boy at FSS who supports Eminem, take a hard look at yourself and at the list of lyrics I’ve compiled at the bottom of this article. Ask yourself: How is this excusable? How can you consider yourself liberal, a feminist, or an activist? Do women—their lives, identities, and well-being—really matter that little to you? To the casual observer, that is how it appears. To an observer who has sifted through dozens of his songs, that is also how it appears. Please begin to educate yourself and stop giving your time, mind, and money to a man nursing an intense, longstanding hatred of women.
“But I may fight for gay rights, especially if that d*ke is more of a knockout than Janay Rice /…/ B*tch, I’ll punch Lana Del Rey right in the face twice, like Ray Rice in broad daylight in the plain sight of the elevator surveillance / ’Til her head is banging on the railing, then celebrate with the Ravens” – Shady CXVPHER compilation [source]
“You don’t wanna blow that rape whistle on me / Scream! I love it. / ‘Fore I get lost with the getting off.” – “Vegas” about Iggy Azalea [source]
“I just want her back / I know I’m a liar / If she ever tries to f*cking leave again, I’ma tie her to the bed and set this house on fire.” – “Love the Way You Lie” feat. Rihanna [source]
“You don’t like it, then peel off, b*tch / Every last woman on Earth I’ll kill off” – “Roman’s Revenge” [source]
“That I’ll still be able to break a motherf*ckin’ table / Over the back of a couple of f*ggots and crack it in half” – “Rap God” [source]
“Stab you in the head whether you’re a f*g or lez / Or the homosex, hermaph or a trans-a-vest / Pants or dress, hate f*gs? The answer’s ‘yes’ / Homophobic? Nah, you’re just heterophobic” – “Criminal” [source]
“Rape sl*ts / Make fun of gay clubs, men who wear make-up” – “Who Knew” [source]
“Like I’ma sit and fight with you over some sl*t b*tch c*nt / That made me put up with her psycho-*ss over 6 months / And only spread her legs to let me hit once” – “The Warning” about Mariah Carey [source]
“You just caught this b*tch cheating / While you at work she’s with some dude trying to get off / F*ck slitting her throat, cut this b*tch’s head off” – “Guilty Conscience” [source]
“Went to gym in 8th grade, raped the women’s swim team / Don’t take me for a joke, I’m no comedian” – “Just Don’t Give a F*ck” [source]
“Slap dips, support domestic violence / Beat your b*tch’s *ss while your kids stare in silence” – “Low Down, Dirty”
“B*tch getter, hid in the bush like Margot Kidder / Jumped out, killed the b*tch and did her /…/ Bring your b*tch, I wanna see if this d*ck gon’ fit in her” – “Low Down, Dirty”
“Don’t put out, I’ll put you out /…/ I’ll chase you around every bar you attend / Never know what kinda car I’ll be in / We’ll see how much you’ll be partying then /…/ Females lie / But I guess that’s just what sl*ts do /…/ Love that tattoo, what’s that say? / ‘Rot In Pieces,’ uh, that’s great /…/ I’ll slap you off that bar stool /…/ Leave handprints all over you /…/ Put anthrax on a Tampax and slap you till you can’t stand.” – “Superman” (found through Jackson Katz)
(About Angelina Jolie:) “She told me ‘Yo, Shady just hand your p*nis to me, I’ll deep throat’ /…/ You f*ggots wanna rassle? I shove a fucking jar of Vaseline up inside your *sshole / And rope it shut with a lasso /…/ Shady let go, the h* has been choked enough, let her *ss go /…/ Strap an extension cord to her arm and electrocute her /…/ I might just scoot by and shoot my mom in the neck with rugers” – “Things Get Worse”
“I guess for him to stop is impossible / He just picked up another prostitute in the parking lot of the hospital / And beat her over the head mercilessly and left her for dead / He thought she was, ’cause otherwise he would never have left / Miraculously, she survived the attack / Even after his accuracy after he hacked the p*ssy with an axe / What are the odds that she’d be back? / He grabbed his encyclopedia off of the top of his f*cking CD rack / Hit her with that, then he threw her into the TV / I’m not playing, Rihanna, where’d you get the VD at? /…/ Let me add my two cents, of course I side with Chris Brown / I’d beat a b*tch down too if she gave my d*ck an itch, now” – “Things Get Worse”
“Kick down Dakota Fanning’s front door while the wh*re is tanning (He can’t say wh*re!) / Of course he can, man, he just saw her fanny / Then murdered her while he danced around the room and wore her panties” – “Things Get Worse” (Fanning was likely 15, at most 17, when he wrote this.)
“Met a r*t*rded kid named Greg, with a wooden leg / Snatched it off and beat him over the f*cking head with the peg /…/ Looking for h**kers to punch in the mouth with a roll of quarters /…/ I don’t promote violence, I just encourage it /…/ The next f*ggot gave me his shoes like they didn’t fit him” – “4 Verses”
“I told this b*tch in gym class / That she was too fat to swim laps / Grabbed that b*tch by her hair, drug her across the ground / And took her up to the highest diving board / And tossed her down / Sorry coach, it’s too late to tell me stop / While I drop this b*tch face down and watch her belly flop /…/ It’s almost dark and I’m still tryna nail a trailer park b*tch / I met a sl*t /…/ Plus, I’m a rapist and a repeated prison escapist / So give me all your money and don’t try nothin’ funny / ‘Cause you know your stinking *ss is too fat to try to outrun me /…/ Saw the house she ran up in and shot her f*ckin’ porch up / Kicked the door down to murder this divorced sl*t /…/ ‘I know you’re in there, b*tch, I got my gun cocked / You might as well come out now’ / She said, ‘Come in, it’s unlocked’ / I walked in /…/ And seen her spread across the bed naked, watching gay p*rn/…/ I grabbed my pocket knife and sliced off her right n*pple /…/ I shouted, ‘Now, b*tch, let’s see who gets the best’ / Stuffed that sh*t in, crooked and f*cked that fat sl*t to death / Ow, ow (Come here, b*tch) / Ow, ah (Come here, take this motherf*cking d*ck, b*tch, come here)” – “As the World Turns”
“Britney’s garbage / What’s this b*tch, r*t*rded? /…/ New Kids on the Block suck a lot of d*ck / Boy, girl groups make me sick / And I can’t wait ’til I catch all you f*ggots in public, I’ma love it /…/ Plus I was put here to put fear / In f*gs who spray Faygo Root Beer / And call themselves clowns ‘cause they look qu**r /…/ And I don’t wrestle, I’ll knock you f*ckin’ f*ggots the f*ck out /…/ My f*ckin’ b*tch mom’s suin’ for ten-million /…/ Which is it, b*tch: Mrs. Briggs or Ms. Mathers? / It doesn’t matter, your attorney Fred Gibson’s a f*ggot /…/ He’s just aggravated I won’t ej*c*late in his *ss” – “Marshall Mathers”
“[sound effect of a corpse being dragged, also at the end of “Kim”] /…/ Oh, where’s Mama? She’s taking a little nap in the trunk / Oh, that smell? Dada must’ve runned over a skunk /…/ And Mama said she wants to show you how far she can float / And don’t worry about that little boo-boo on her throat /…/ Mama’s messy, ain’t she? / We’ll let her wash off in the water/…/ But for now, we’ll just say Mama was real, real bad / Was being mean to Dad and made him real, real mad /…/ Mama’s too sleepy to hear you screaming in her ear (Mama) / That’s why you can’t get her to wake, but don’t worry / Dada made a nice bed for Mommy at the bottom of the lake / Here, you wanna help Dada tie a rope around this rock? (Yeah) / We’ll tie it to her footsie then we’ll roll her off the dock /…/ There goes Mama, splashing in the water / No more fighting with Dad, no more restraining order / No more step-dada, no more new brother / Blow her kisses bye-bye, tell Mama you love her (Mommy) /…/ But first, just help Dad with two more things out the trunk” – ‘“97 Bonnie & Clyde”
Sl*t, you think I won’t choke no wh*re / ‘Til them vocal cords don’t work in her throat no more? (Ahh) / These motherf*ckers are thinking I’m playing / Thinking I’m saying this sh*t ’cause I’m thinking it just to be saying it (Ahh) / Put your hands down, b*tch—I ain’t gonna shoot you / I’ma pull you to this bullet and put it through you (Ahh) / Shut up, sl*t! You’re causin’ too much chaos / Just bend over and take it like a sl*t—okay, Ma? / ‘Oh, now he’s raping his own mother / Abusing a wh*re’ /…/ B*tch, I’ma kill you! You don’t wanna f*ck with me / Girls neither, you ain’t nothing but a sl*t to me / B*tch, I’ma kill you! /…/ B*tch, I’ma kill you! Like a murder weapon, I’ma conceal you / In a closet with mildew, sheets, pillows and film you /…/ No, just criminal intent to sodomize women again /…/ Okay, I’m ready to go play, I got the machete from OJ / I’m ready to make everyone’s throats ache / You f*ggots keep egging me on / ‘Til I have you at knifepoint, then you beg me to stop” – “Kill You” (found through USA Today)
“This b*tch tried escaping the jack / Grabbed her by the throat, it’s murder she wrote / You barely heard a word as she choked / It wasn’t nothing for her to be smoked / Then I slammed her on her back ’til her vertebrae broke /…/ Pulled the MAC-10 out / Stuck it in her face: ‘Shut your yacking mouth / ‘Fore I blow the brain from out the back your scalp!’ / Drug her by her hair, smacked her up / Figured, ‘F*ck it—mug her while you’re there,’ jacked her up / Stole her car and made a profit” – “Murder, Murder”
“Leave her stretched out like a baby T-shirt on Ric Flair / As I rip, tear, an*l beads in a split rear / Spray Febreze in the chick’s hair / Make her wheeze, tryna get air / I played for keeps, there’s no escaping me, I have a b*tch scared / And chained to me, and throw away the key / And she’ll be so afraid to leave / That even if she ends up breaking free she’ll just sit there / Trying to scrape up enough courage and strength to get up / It’s impossible like raping a sl*t /…/ My idea, you coming to(o), is waking you up / With smelling salts after I Quaalude your cup / That’ll straighten you up if you try to stray like a pup /…/ But b*tch, I’m like the dog pound with females /…/ I strangle a sk*nk’s neck ’til it’s triangular /…/ F*ck Christina [Aguilera] with a plastic spoon” – “Kick Off (freestyle)”
“Got my daughter laughing ’cause I sent her mother whitewater rafting” – “Bad Meets Evil”
“’Daddy, it’s me! Help Mommy, her wrists are bleeding!’” – “When I’m Gone” (as his daughter Hailie. Genius annotation by user @myoblast: “This is a reference to when Eminem once performed “Kim” at a concert to audience approval, all the while being aware of Kim’s presence in the crowd. This experience actually caused her to attempt suicide by slitting her wrists.”)
“F*ck that sh*t, b*tch! / Eat a motherf*cking d*ck, chew on a pr*ck / And lick a million motherf*cking c*cks per second” – “My Dad’s Gone Crazy” (This part is about his mother.)
“You fake, lying sl*t /…/ You wanna lose two legs? /…/ And I thought, wouldn’t sh*t just be a lot easier / If you dropped dead? / I would feel so much, much better /…/ Think I just relapsed, this b*tch pushed me over the brink /…/ The cops pulled me over, but they let me go, ’cause I told them / I’m only driving drunk ’cause that b*tch drove me to drink / I’m back on my f*ck h*s, with a whole new hatred for blondes / But bias? I hate all b*tches the same, baby, come on! / Excuse the pun, but b*tch is such a broad statement, and I’m / Channeling my anger through every single station that’s on! /…/ But b*tches ain’t sh*t, I’d rather leave a b*tch in a ditch / B*tch, you complain when you listen to this / But you still throw yourself at me: that’s what I call pitching a b*tch / That’s why I’m swinging at this chicks on-site /…/ I’m just playing, b*tch / You know I love you” – “So Much Better”
“You are now allowed to officially slap b*tches” – “Drug Ballad”
Probably thinking you’ll get slapped so dang hard, / You won’t even be able to stand up straight, aren’t you? / Couple rape charges, people think you’re a monster /…/ I would hate for you to be stranded at the laundromat / I got your back /…/ And sit up front; I’m not asking, it’s a trap / You just got jacked and body snatched, and it’s a wrap /…/ Yeah baby, do that dance / It’s the last dance you’ll ever get the chance to do / Girl, shake that *ss, you ain’t never gonna break that glass /…/ Sing that song / It’s the last song you’ll ever get the chance to sing /…/ Look at you bawl, why you crying to me? / Same song and dance / The first victim I had, she was a big one /…/ How ’bout a ride to rehab? Get in, c*nt! /…/ Murder wasn’t my intention / If I wanted to kill you, it would’ve already been done / Slowly she gets in and I begin to lynch her / With 66 inches of extension cord /…/ Send her pictures of my collection of skeletons /…/ I’m about to make a new outfit out of you / New outfit? Sh*t, I’ll make a suit out of you, shoot / Now, show me how you move, baby, do how you do /…/ Same kicking and screaming, same crying and sobbing / Same song and dance / Same begging and pleading, same yelling and bleeding / Same song and dance” – “Same Song & Dance” (This song is about Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears.)
“I even make the b*tches I rape c*m” – “Medicine Man”
“The press’s wet dream, like Bobby and Whitney — Nate, hit me! /…/ I rap like I’m addicted to smack, like I’m Kim Mathers” – “‘Till I Collapse”
“You won’t even listen, so f*ck it, I’m tryna stop you from breathin’ / I put both hands on your throat, I sit on top of you squeezing / ‘Til I snap your neck like a Popsicle stick, ain’t no possible reason / I can think of to let you walk up out this house and let you live / Tears stream down both of my cheeks” – “Space Bound” (found through Daily Caller)
“But I can’t figure out which Spice Girl I want to impregnate /…/ Got p*ssed off and ripped Pamela Lee’s t*ts off / And smacked her so hard I knocked her clothes backwards like Kris Kross” – “My Name Is” (found through Daily Caller)
And f*ck Ann Coulter with a Klan poster / With a lamp post, door handle, shutter / A damn bolt cutter, a sandal, a can opener / A candle, rubber, piano, a flannel, sucker / Some hand soap, butter, a banjo and manhole cover / Hand over the mouth and nose smother / Trample ran over the tr*mp with the Land Rover /…/ Gut her, make an example of her – “No Favors” (found through Daily Caller)
“My baby’s mom, b*tch made me an angry blonde / So I made me a song, killed her and put Hailie on /…/ You f*ggots can vanish to volcanic ash / And reappear in hell with a can of gas and a match” – “Remember Me?” (found through Daily Caller)
“Now I don’t wanna hit no woman, but this chick’s got it coming / Someone better get this b*tch ‘fore she gets kicked in the stomach / And she’s pregnant, but she’s egging me on, begging me to throw her / Off the steps of this porch, my only weapon is force /…/ You gonna get that h* / When you see her, you gon’ bend her f*cking neck back / ‘Cause you love her, you never would expect that blow /…/ How could she stoop that low?” – “Drips”
“Shut up, b*tch! /…/ That’s my girlfriend screaming in the trunk / But I didn’t slit her throat, I just tied her up—see? I ain’t like you / ‘Cause if she suffocates, she’ll suffer more, and then she’ll die too” – “Stan”
“Kim”, a fantasy of brutally murdering his ex-wife. I couldn’t pick a singular quote.
Both from his newest album, released in 2020 [source]:
“My girl’s cheating, I’m kicking that f*cking b*tch to the curb” – “Marsh”
[sound effect of “a woman screaming and being stabbed to death”] – “Premonition (Intro)”