Rapper T.I. Makes Sure His Daughter’s Hymen Remains Intact via Yearly Visits to the Gynecologist
Clifford Joseph Harris, Jr., or T.I., a rapper best known for hit song “Dead and Gone” with Justin Timberlake, is back in the news for taking his daughter, Deyjah Harris, now 18, to have her hymen checked every year since her 16th birthday.
The comments, recently made in a podcast called Ladies Like Us, clearly reflect T.I.’s deeply outdated and misogynistic views regarding young women and their bodies. After Deyjah’s 16th birthday party, he said he had put up a sticky note that said “Gyno. Tomorrow. 9:30.” He also admitted to intimidating his daughter into sharing her private medical information with him. He said on the podcast, “So we’ll go and sit down and the doctor comes and talks, and the doctor’s maintaining a high level of professionalism. … He’s like, ‘You know, sir, I have to [receive permission], in order to share information.’ I’m like, ‘Deyjah, they want you to sign this so we can share information. Is there anything you would not want me to know? See, Doc? Ain’t no problem.'”
A father taking his daughter to a gynecologist to make sure her hymen is intact means he clearly wants to control with whom and when she chooses to have intercourse. This translates as him feeling a certain ownership over her body — as if she were property and her sexual activity would depreciate her value and, in turn, his public image and respect. This is a deeply misogynist viewpoint as it enables the control of women and their sexual agency — plus, this rigid standard is never applied to men. T.I. does not have the same standards for his 15-year-old son, as he also revealed in the podcast: T.I. is aware that his underage son is not a virgin and is okay with him being sexually active. However, with respect to his daughter, T.I. said, “I will say, as of her 18th birthday, her hymen is still intact.”
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Virginity testing, or the two-finger test — in which a doctor inserts two fingers in a woman’s vagina to check if her hymen is intact — has no basis in science and is a human rights violation, according to the United Nation. Plus, just as there’s no way to tell if a man has had sexual intercourse, there’s no way to tell if a woman has had sexual intercourse either. Women can break their hymens during athletics, horseback riding, riding a bike, and other normal physical activities. When the doctor informed T.I. of the same, he said he retorted, “Look, Doc, she don’t ride no horses, she don’t ride no bike, she don’t play no sports. Just check the hymen, please, and give me back my results expeditiously.”
The rapper’s daughter, Deyjah Harris, seems also to be quite unhappy with her father’s controlling, misogynistic behavior. On her public Twitter account, she recently liked others’ tweets that actively denounce T.I.’s actions. These tweets said, “That is just beyond possessive,” “this is disgusting, possessive and controlling *whew*,” and “‘give me my results’ first of all…those are HER results!! Like WTF.” I’ll just say, hey Deyjah, blink twice if you need us to break you out.