Central African Republic Communication Minister Fidel Ngouandjika has banned misogynistic music as it undermines the role of women and contravenes their rights.
As quoted on the BBC news website he said
"It is out of the question that music of misogynist character should be allowed to ride roughshod over questions of equality and the respect of the Central African woman,"
"The Central African woman is a key part of the country's development."
I’m impressed that someone high up in the country’s government felt strongly enough to speak out against music that portrays women as inferior to men, and also that they want to and are prepared to take action to encourage women to be seen as equal to men in society.
However I think that such an outright ban as this is censorship, and that on it’s own this would not effectively tackle the problem. I also tend to think that if something can be banned outright it sets a precedent for something else to be banned outright and that this can lead to tight governmental control, it is tricky to know when and where to draw the line.
If there is an audience for music containing lyrics that undermine and objectify women (and there clearly is because hip-hop and rnb do it constantly) then just preventing them from accessing this although a potentially important step in this situation may fail to do much to address and alter the views that allow it.
I would be eager to support education from a young age that works against negative imagery and objectification, with an aim to fostering the seed to develop into a society that rejects gender inequality as it does inequality among other social and racial groups.
As an aside, I liked this article because it shocked and surprised me so much. I’m beginning to understand I have a terribly skewed impression of African politics, dominated and built mainly upon infamous African leaders such as Mugabe. This news was great because it challenged this.