BBC news today reported on the activities of my favourite rapper, Dappy, once more – this time in relation to accusations which have arisen that the star used mephedrone in a night club last month, shortly before it became illegal. Whilst I acknowledge that this hardly constitutes news, and that reporting it is indicative of nothing but a slow news day, I still can’t help but comment on the story – for reasons which will become obvious soon enough.
Whilst lower forms of media shall be reporting on the actual story itself, I myself am above such pettiness, and lament the decline of the media, chastising the man for using a substance which, at the time, was perfectly legal. No, I shall instead be reporting not on Dappy’s alleged actions, but on his words. After all, if I wanted to attack Dappy’s actions, then his texting threatening messages to a woman who dared speak out against him on the radio, or his assault charges, or indeed, his awful rapping ability, would be far more suitable starting points for mounting an assault. But instead, I want to review the man’s words. For there, and only there, lies the truth. Plus, I kinda already did that other stuff.
So, with that in mind, let us dig in to the mind of Britain’s most successful Greek Hip-Hop star:
"It's just not a thing to be doing. I've learnt my mistake. I'll never do such things again."
It’s hard to believe that Dappy, whose real name is Costas Dinos Contostavlos, got an A* grade in his English GCSE, especially when you consider that I myself only received a double A grade for English Language and Literature. Granted, I’m no Colin Dexter, and was more than satisfied with my grades, but come on – this guy can barely speak! Did he do an “English” GCSE in the same way as I did a German GCSE, or something? Hell, my German (Also an A Grade, in case you were wondering) is better than this guy’s English – and I freely admit that I can hardly speak the language! Is Dappy’s apparent pervasive developmental disorder (though, in conjunction with his short stature, is more likely to be Fetal Alcohol Syndrome induced retardation) merely an act? Indeed, the word ‘Dappy’ has recently become a pejorative term denoting an inarticulate Bellend in my personal vocabulary, so to learn that he is, in our government’s view, more qualified than I am to be writing this article, is offensive to me on so many levels. Just look at that quote above. He hasn’t learnt FROM his mistake. No, that would actually make sense. Instead, he tells us that he has “learnt his mistake”. WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? Now, I’m all for people substituting words in common usage in place of technically correct terms if it makes any logical sense – I myself used the term “self-depreciating humour” recently even though I KNEW the correct term was “self-deprecating”, and am personally a huge fan of Russell Brand’s speaking style, in which he combines common slang and regional dialects with an Oxbridge-esque vocabulary, in order to create a working man’s version of Queen’s English, and often attempt to imitate this myself (see every article on this site) – but how does that sentence even make sense? He learnt his mistake? What, he wanted to make a mistake to get him in the public eye once again, so he learnt to snort mephedrone in front of ‘Sun’ photographers? Is that what he’s saying? And don’t even get me started on “It’s just not a thing to be doing” (and yes, I do realise I just began a sentence with a preposition)!
Grammar makes me CRAAAAZZY!
But I’m getting too bogged-down in semantics. After all, no-one comes online for an English lesson. Except foreign people. No, what I really want to focus on is Dappy’s ATTITUDE, rather than his grammar. So, let’s take a look at another quote:
“You have to try things to understand that they're bad. But not always. I felt unwell that day."
Well, at least you started well, Dappy. But here’s a piece of advice; If you’re ever trying to win an argument, try not to contradict yourself halfway through, it just makes you sound like an idiot. Whilst the statement “You have to try things to understand they’re bad” is, in itself, a small gem of wisdom, which combines a mature, reflective opinion with a level of childhood innocence, the very next sentence cancels this out. “But not always". Really, Dappy? I thought you were being completely literal – I was going to suggest we try another Holocaust, just because I’ve never tried it, so don’t know if it was bad or not. So, not only is he apparently assuming that we’re all morons who won’t understand that his first sentence was primarily metaphorical, and designed to be more illustrative than literal, but he also undermines the original point he made by essentially telling us it was wrong.
“But not always, huh? You think maybe the time you were doing drugs was one of THOSE times?”.
Now, for the record, I was all for keeping mephedrone legal, and was opposed to the reclassification of Cannabis to a Class B drug last year (or was it the year before? I should know - given I wrote a 3,000 word report on it not that long ago), but come on – if you’re going to tell people they shouldn’t do the drug because it’s wrong, should you have been doing it yourself? Granted, I like getting handjobs off girls, but wouldn’t give a guy a handjob (under normal circumstances – there are obviously exceptions), but that’s besides the point… This is more like Peter Sutcliffe having a go at someone for murdering a prostitute – it’s not only Hypocritical, but it’s also a bit of a dick move.
"I just want to say that I'm more than glad genuinely that they've banned this thing because I've seen how many people are dying off it.”
How many people are dying from mephedrone? Reports suggest… uh, zero? Members of the ACMD and other organizations have confirmed that the effects of mephedrone are still not entirely known, and admit that there could be harmful long-term effects. However, there have been no recorded cases of anyone actually dying from the substance. Indeed, according to ACMD member and criminologist Fiona Measham (Dan Silverstone has not yet been reached for comment, but I’ll track him down if anyone actually insists on me doing so), the reporting of mephedrone-related deaths by newspapers followed "the usual cycle of ‘exaggeration, distortion, inaccuracy and sensationalism' associated with the reporting of recreational drug use". To highlight this issue, I shall, for your pleasure, overlay the results of “reported deaths” vs. “confirmed deaths” for mephedrone with the infamous Glasgow study of drugs deaths in the media:
*Occasionally suicides will be attributed to Cannabis use, whereas the study only shows those who died from the effects of the drug itself e.g. acute poisoning. On this note, I should point out that alcohol has not been measured in this fashion, and that only 9,031 deaths occured due to alcohol poisoning in 2008, but the increase in heart disease and cancer, etc. Not to mention crashes caused by drink-driving, and murders/suicides fuelled by alcohol, all combined make the 35,000 figure. This is therefore an exaggeration when compared with the other figures. My apologies - but I can't be bothered to edit the picture.
Now, I’m not saying we should all go out and do Mephedrone, but to say that you’re glad the substance was banned because so many people were dying of it seems... well, retarded. I don’t actually drink these days (1 year and 2 1/2 months without alcohol), so I almost don’t want to say this for risk of sounding like a self-righteous prick, but if ANY of those drugs needs to be illegal, it’s Alcohol (David Nutt agrees with me, the old flirt).
But let’s ignore the facts for now, and just look at IMAGE. What rapper in their right mind would do drugs, and then tell their fans that they think drugs are bad, and tell them not to take any (“I'd want any of our fans to stay well clear")? 50 Cent has never taken drugs in his life, but still wouldn’t dream of telling his fans not to take any, because no-one wants to have someone they look up to treat them like an idiot. You have to lead by example. And that’s a lot of the problem with Dappy – he seems to embody the very worse of rap culture without having any of the redeeming qualities that other rappers do. Using 50 Cent as an example, simply because I just mentioned him before, let’s compare the two:
50 is also an actual black guy, not a poor attempt to act like one.
Would someone shoot this prick already?
Artist's representation of what would happen if Dappy was shot.
I'm almost going to be sad in a year's time when N-DUBZ fade into obscurity. I may actually have to find something serious to write about... Like Gordon Brown calling that woman a Bigot, or whatever else the news is on about.