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Looking at Wyclef's 'Sweetest Girl' video

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Remember when Wyclef released “Perfect Gentleman” (a.k.a. “The Stripper Song”) and then put out a video in which he danced in a club full of, um, strippers and then did yoga with them? It may not have been groundbreaking, but at least it made some sense.

Now, Wyclef is back with another Save-A-Stripper campaign, this time in the form of a slightly more melodic composition called “Sweetest Girl” (a.k.a. “Dollar Bill”), featuring Akon and LilWayne. I would call Wyclef (and his humanoid doppelganger T-Pain) a huge sucker for always falling in love with strippers, but let me check myself lest I wreck myself — it seems I was wrong about this song. After watching the video (check it out for yourself here), I discovered that “Sweetest Girl” is not about pole-dancers after all. It’s about inhumane deportation centers and unethical immigration policies!

For real though? So the girl he went to high school with and used to make him “do the hula hoop around the gym” has since been interned in a camp and can’t get back into the country? The same girl who “would rather be up in the club” than on “the strip”? I guess if America is the club, and the Third World is the strip…

No, sorry, ‘Clef, I am not buying this one. The only thing that makes this video at all understandable is that Akon is from Senegal, Wyclef is from Haiti, and Weezy is a self-proclaimed “Martian” — so maybe deportation is an issue close to their hearts. But even within the absurd allegory, Wyclef’s role as a human rights activist/MI:5-style secret agent seems sort of odd since he doesn’t really even help the girl until she throws a Molotov cocktail at a tent, at which point a stunt double steps in and beats up a few dudes. A bit haphazard for a professional! The “official montage” is even more confusing, especially when it casually mixes high school yearbook photos with 9/11 conspiracy theories.

This whole thing reminds with of the cult classic Fear of a Black Hat, a This is Spinal Tap­– style mockumentary about a rap group called NWH. Throughout the film, “Ice Cold” uses ridiculous political explanations to justify for all of NWH’s explicit tracks, like “Booty Juice“and “P.U.S.S.Y (apparently it stands for “Political Unrest Stabilize Society. Yes.”). Is Wyclef engaging in a similar joke, or am I missing something? If not, can you think of other videos that try to make songs into something they’re not? Share your thoughts below… 

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