‘Baby It’s Cold Outisde’ is not a song about rape

By Lisa Lillianstrom

“Baby It’s Cold Outside,” the 1944 holiday classic by Frank Loesser, never seemed to be a problem for listeners until recently when radio stations started banning the song because it was deemed controversial even though the song, which has since been covered by numerous artists, really isn’t.

The controversy of the song started when Cleveland radio station Star 102 announced Nov. 30 they removed the song from their playlist due to the lyric content. A listener called WDOK 102.1 to say the song doesn’t align with the morals of the growing #MeToo movement, according to a Nov. 30 Billboard article.

Some have suggested the song is about rape and the man is not getting the women’s consent and is having sex with her. These accusations come from lines like “There’s bound to be talk tomorrow,” sung by Esther Williams, Ricardo Montalbano then sings “Think of my lifelong sorrow.”

In the 1940’s it was frowned upon by society for a woman to spend the night with a man when she wasn’t married. and she wanted to get home so there wouldn’t be any talk among her friends and family. So the man was not raping her she just didn’t want to be the talk of the town.

It was a different time back when Loesser wrote the song, and there could be many different interpretations of the lyrics that do not support rape culture.

“I think if we look at the context when it was written, however many years ago, it probably wouldn’t have the reactions, or people reading into it like they are today,” Esther Langer senior music major said. “Plus there are so many other songs that people listen to that are way more explicit, so it doesn’t make a lot of sense to pick on this one and not the other ones.”

Some of the Top 40 Hit Songs talk about sex and use explicit language, yet they are on the radio, and no one is banning them. Like the song F*** You by Cee Lo Green, the explicit version of the song uses the F-word many times and yet no one calls to ban it.

Another example, the lyrics to “Animals” by Maroon 5 may be catchy but they suggest the same sort of rape culture promotion people are getting upset about concerning “Baby It’s Cold Outside.”

Lead singer Adam Levine sings, “Baby I’m preying on you tonight, hunt you down, eat you alive just like animals.” Some people have suggested the song glamorizes violence against women, yet it is still on the radio.

“I don’t know the actual intentions of the person who wrote [Baby Its Cold Outside], but people are going too far to try to get it banned on the radio,” freshman psychology major Kaya Easley said.

If “Animals” and F*** You can be on the radio and played at dance clubs, then “Baby It’s Cold Outside” can be played on the radio.

People seem to be getting the wrong idea of what the song is about, and what used to be a fun Christmas song is now becoming a controversial gender and sexual assault debate.

While no one really knows what the writer was thinking when he wrote the song, what people should do is to research a little, they need to look at the origins of the song, realize that 1944 was way different than 2018, and they will know it is highly unlikely this song is about rape.

“I think the image that has been created for [the song] now was not the songwriter’s original intent,” senior hospitality major Becky Pieterick said. “Because of this miscommunication, it’s not one of my favorites, but I do enjoy listening to it when it comes on the radio.”