Music History

There’s a DART Ad About 'WAP,' and It Only Gets Weirder from There

This ad is a weird moment in the history of public transportation.
This ad is a weird moment in the history of public transportation. Lauren Drewes Daniels
click to enlarge This ad is a weird moment in the history of public transportation. - LAUREN DREWES DANIELS
This ad is a weird moment in the history of public transportation.
Lauren Drewes Daniels
America has a long tradition of challenging its culture through the use of public transportation. A recent ad spotted on a Dallas bus is no Rosa Parks moment, but it's a curious one nonetheless.

The ad going round and round on Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s buses is using a bit of controversial pop culture to grab the attention of parents and/or teenagers, by making a reference to the hit song “WAP,” an ode to “wet-ass pussy.”

You remember the rap song by Cardi B and Meghan Thee Stallion, with a video cameo by Kylie Jenner, that horrified conservatives afraid of a bit of humidity?

Here’s a sample of the lyrics, lest you forget: “Wet-ass pussy/ Make that pull-out game weak, woo (ah)/
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah/ Yeah, you fucking with some wet-ass pussy/ Bring a bucket and a mop for this wet-ass pussy.”

And they gave Bob Dylan the Nobel for songwriting. The hack.

The recent ad on the DART is for a website called talkaboutitdallas.com, which is run by nonprofit North Texas Alliance to Reduce Teen Pregnancy and outlines information about teen sex and teen pregnancy.

On talkaboutitdallas.com one finds useful stats such as, “Dallas has the highest teen birth rate* of any major city in Texas,” and “Young mothers are 6 times more likely to experience persistent poverty than girls without children.”

The DART ad for the organization reads:
“W.A.P.
W: We
A: Always use
P: Protection.”

It also includes a scan code with the hashtag #SexEdForAll and the name of the website.

The internet is rampant with creative bus ads used around the world. This is not one of them,

For starters, the nonprofit is seemingly under the impression that the best way to encourage teens to avoid unwanted pregnancy and to discourage them from engaging in unsafe sex is by evoking a powerfully moving, graphic sexual image made especially attractive through hit songs performed by popular artists.

Referencing “WAP” a year after its release (and honestly, even soon after) is a tired dad joke, one that especially can’t be topped after Maya Rudolph famously referenced the song in a Saturday Night Live October episode when she impersonated then-candidate for Vice President Kamala Harris with the line “America needs a WAP: woman as president.”

Outdated comedy aside, website visitors for the nonprofit's initiative are greeted by a pop-up ad featuring a photo of teenagers dancing, with the words “#WAPDallas contest.”

Yep, you read that right: Teenagers. Dancing. WAP contest.

Naturally, we followed the hashtag. It lead almost nowhere. Parents are not encouraging their underage children to sign up for a WAP challenge? You don't say.

Yet the group keeps trying. On July 10, the nonprofit posted on its Facebook: “Dallas, listen up! Did you know that #WAP has a new meaning #WeAlwaysUseProtection."

The post urged followers to help make the message “GO VIRAL.” Erm, nice choice of words for a sex ed website, Dad would say.

It got two shares.
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Eva Raggio is the Dallas Observer's music and arts editor, a job she took after several years of writing about local culture and music for the paper. Eva supports the arts by rarely asking to be put on "the list" and always replies to emails, unless the word "pimp" makes up part of the artist's name.
Contact: Eva Raggio