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‘All About That Bass’ needs some more treble

Photo courtesy of Epic Records

If you’ve listened to the radio recently, you’ve most likely heard Meghan Trainor’s song “All About That Bass.” It’s a catchy tune with a retro vibe that helped it reached No. 1 on Billboard. It’s also received immense praise for sending a positive message to girls about body love. If you actually pay attention to Trainor’s lyrics, though, you’ll realize there’s hardly anything uplifting about them.
Let’s start from the top. So the song begins with a catchy chorus and a du-wop-inspired sound with the lyrics “Because you know I’m all about that bass, ‘bout that bass, no treble,” repeated several times, which sounds like jargon for a bias against skinny girls and for big girls.
But the purpose of Trainor’s song is supposed to be to promote self-love. While it’s doing that for some women, it’s doing the exact opposite for other women.
It’s encouraging thicker women to embrace their curves and at the same time, making girls who aren’t curvy feel bad about themselves because they don’t belong to the group of women who have a little more to love.
Trainor is being lauded for her crusade against non-curvy women, singing lyrics like “I’m bringin’ booty back, so go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that.”
With the popularity Trainor has gained and the tremendous influence the media has on adolescents, this kind of song has the power to convince listeners that all skinny girls are indeed ignorant, conceited bitches.
But that’s not the case.
Is working out, eating healthy and wearing makeup a sign that someone is stuck up or rude? That’s like questioning whether everyone who eats junk and lacks a fitness routine is nice. The answer is an obvious no.
There is so much pressure in today’s society to be thin and pretty that it’s not surprising to see faces transformed through plastic surgery and people undergoing rigorous diets. Then the battle becomes shaking off the negativity that comes from trying to boost one’s confidence.
Furthermore, there seems to be a belief that only big people get teased about their weight. Artists sing songs in regards to this, it gets praised by many people and it even becomes OK to call thin girls ‘skinny bitches’ like they’re evil creatures who are to be hated on because they work hard for (or just naturally have) slim bodies.
But what happens to bulimia, anorexia and the skinny kids who also get their share of bullying? Does that all suddenly become nonexistent?
I, personally, was teased as a kid for being too skinny. My mom had a hard time finding clothes that fit me well. I was a very active child and I happened to prefer fruits and vegetables over the other junk that was available.
As a result of this, I was called names like ‘stick,’ ‘twig,’ and ‘skeleton.’ I’d go home from school and eat spoonfuls of peanut butter straight from the jar even though I hated the stuff because I wanted to have a ‘normal body’ and stop from being teased.
So I’m all for Trainor trying to encourage thick women to love the bodies they live in, but does she really have to put thin girls down to do so?
Think about it this way – if you write a song bragging about having “all the right junk in all the right places” that “all the boys chase” and “bringing booty back,” that means you’re happy and confident with the body you have. But when you try to put the girls who don’t have this ‘junk’ and ‘booty’ down, that’s a bigger sign of insecurity and envy than it is confidence.
But God forbid an artist like Katy Perry or Taylor Swift write a song replacing the word ‘skinny’ in ‘skinny bitches’ with ‘fat’ because they’d be viewed as ignorant, selfish and judgmental people. So why is Trainor receiving so much praise for doing it?
And not only is the shade Trainor throws at skinny girls questionable, the affirmation she is trying to give girls is pretty ridiculous. Take these lyrics for example: “Yeah my momma she told me don’t worry about your size. She said boys like a little more booty to hold at night.” So girls should seek validation from men to feel confident about their bodies?
It’s great that Trainor is defying Hollywood’s standard of beauty but performing a song encouraging girls to be confident in their bodies just doesn’t make sense if she’s putting one group of girls down to make another bunch feel confident.
Dear Meghan Trainor, how about being all about that bass and that treble?

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