People dancing on a basketball court.

BLKDating/YouTube

‘This is crazy’: People are divided on Juvenile’s ‘Vax That Thang Up’

The song encourages people to get the Covid-19 vaccine.

 

Siobhan Ball

Internet Culture

Published Jul 8, 2021   Updated Jul 9, 2021, 9:13 am CDT

In an attempt to get more people to get the Covid-19 vaccine, rapper Juvenile teamed up with Black dating app BLK to produce “Vax That Thang Up,” a reworking of his 1998 anthem “Back That Azz Up.”

BLK, along with several other dating apps, already partnered up with the U.S. government in an attempt to encourage widespread vaccination, offering vaccinated user perks that include the ability to screen potential partners by vaccination status. This collaboration with Juvenile and his creative partners is just the latest arm of its strategy to persuade as much of their user base to get the jab as possible.

Speaking to the hosts on CNN’s “New Day,” Juvenile said that when BLK reached out to him with the idea, he thought it was a good way to spread awareness, something that’s extremely important to him. Comparing the Covid-19 vaccine to the ones required for children to attend school, Juvenile added that, while he endorses educating yourself and making the decision together as a family first, everyone will be vaccinated soon.

Opinions on this new pro-vax anthem are sharply divided, ranging all the way through love, hate, and even second-hand embarrassment.

Some consider the new song a banger, already recording TikTok dances and generally just vibing to it as they let everyone know they approve its message.

https://www.tiktok.com/@tsompathegoat/video/6982261659922369797?is_copy_url=0&is_from_webapp=v1&sender_device=pc&sender_web_id=6930283398088017414
@tatyandbry

#ad #VaxThatThangUp and get ready to date IRL! Download @meetblk from the link in our bio! DC:@keke.janajah #ad

♬ Vax That Thang Up – BLK dating app

While others criticized the song for pandering to the Black community and doing very little to counteract the understandable vaccine hesitance felt by many within it.

Unlike white antivaxxers—whose opposition to vaccine can stem from conspiracy theories—many Black people are suspicious of the Covid-19 vaccine due to its new status, the government’s intense push for everyone to get it, and the long history of medical racism and unethical experimentation conducted by the U.S. government on members of the Black community. To them, Juvenile is selling out his own community for a dollar.

https://www.tiktok.com/@rizzaislam/video/6982284169854340357?is_copy_url=0&is_from_webapp=v1&sender_device=pc&sender_web_id=6930283398088017414
https://www.tiktok.com/@everyday_3j/video/6982432223001660678?is_copy_url=0&is_from_webapp=v1&lang=en&sender_device=pc&sender_web_id=6930283398088017414

Then there are those who felt that Juvenile had ruined the song and/or their childhoods.

https://www.tiktok.com/@lalaland1982/video/6982578202279480582?is_copy_url=0&is_from_webapp=v1&sender_device=pc&sender_web_id=6930283398088017414
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*First Published: Jul 8, 2021, 4:27 pm CDT