The PitchFork review of Big Sean’s new album Detroit 2 is fairly brutal; it claims that he “struggles to deliver anything that isn’t fundamentally embarrassing” and “every time Big Sean attempts to reveal a deeper side of himself, he can’t help but come across as a woefully unpleasant person.”
What surprised me the most was when anti-vaccination (antivax) and traditional natural medicine showed up in his lines, despite the promise in the first track Why Would I Stop? to give us “the antidote,” “the cure cancer flow,” and “stop a pandemic,” which are all fantastic goals that the international medical community would wholeheartedly agree on.
Lucky Me takes an immediate jump into naturopathy with a story about how his heart condition was untreatable by modern medicine:
’Til my mama took me to holistic doctors and they prescribed me magnesium for two weeks
Went back to the regular doctors and they said, “Huh, damn, looks like we don’t need to proceed”
That’s how I know that western medicine weak
Next up in FEED we hear that he doesn’t like checkups with medical tests:
Dawg, my life a scene out of Casablanca, you got it wrong, I’m the monster
Burning Man, Ayahuasca (Burning), my check up, no diagnostics
And finally, in Harder Than My Demons we’ve got a shoutout to Honduran herbalist Alfredo Bowman:
All natural, Doctor Sebi, you gon’ have to CBD me
I been watchin’ what they feed mе (Woah, woah)
This is followed up swiftly by the brag that Big Sean does not get influenza vaccinations:
No sir (Sir), I don’t even do flu shots
I know that we’re not listening to Big Sean for deep social commentary — we’re listening to its fantastic production, catchy flow, and delivery — but it’s disappointing that in 2020, in the middle of a global viral pandemic that’s already taken 1 million lives, we have a popular hip-hop/rap album smattered with anti-medicine, anti-science punchlines.
We currently even have medical experts, physicians, scientists, and nurses telling us to get our flu shots because combined flu/COVID-19 infections can be extremely dangerous to our health.
I wish there was something positive in there about social distancing, cooking at home, or wearing masks. Content that would encourage and advertise for proper health decisions, instead of judgily hinting that we should all fall face first into deep anti-medicine conspiracy theories.