Culture and Consent: Tameem Youness’ ‘Salmonella’ Has Ignited Fierce Social Debates Among Egyptians
Following the virality of Tameem Youness’ latest hit ‘Salmonella’, the internet went crazy and the Egyptian community is utterly divided.
Due to the sensitivity of the topic, the song was not welcomed by many. Although Tameem explained his intentions in the video, and how he was mocking Egyptian men and ridiculing their egos, being in a community where not everyone completely understands the intentions behind his explanation, the music video can backfire, and it did. Some people saw that, in a country where sexual harassment is a pressing issue, harassers can jump on the trend, misinterpreting the message and acting upon it.
Unfortunately, the video went live and viral on the first day of 2020, coinciding with the video of the girl from Al Mansoura being sexually harassed. People were already in a rage after watching the harassment video, so sarcasm on anything related to the topic was not tolerated.
Many also argued that with being artist and influencer comes responsibility, and Youness should have been more conscious of this fact when making the video.
However, if we choose to go against the song, some argue that we shouldn’t be selective. There have been songs like ‘El Asatok’ by Hamdy Bachan, and many others, which have been widely celebrated and played in events all over the country, although the song is basically a depiction of a man catcalling a woman.
Regardless of Tameem’s intentions, what we can all agree on is that the song sparked a much-needed debate and a conversation that is necessary if we want to move towards creating a country where women no longer have to fear such widespread harassment.