March 2, 2016
Hip Hop Sipping on Sizzurp
Hip Hop has a way of reflecting what’s going on in our world today. From new fashion trends, to songs glamorizing Miley Cirus twerking antics, to speaking out against police brutality. From insignificant twitter rants to real issues that affect our community, one things for sure everybody is listening. Hip hop has been known to surface in the quietest suburbs and bumped in countries that speak no english. Rap makes sure to let you in on what is “cool”. Especially now a days, where sipping Sizzurp is in.
From the beginning Hip Hop has been used as a vehicle of self expression. We can’t forget that many injustices that were happening in the inner cities, were being brought to light.
There is also a negative side to this powerful source of self expression. Critics say that Hip Hop encourages misogyny, violence against women, crime activity and drug use. I think the perspective is all wrong, the real question we should pose would be, does Hip Hop encourage or reflect existing drug use?
If you listen closely, to Hip Hop you can hear many references to drug use. Rappers like Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa, are very open about their Marijuana use. All over their social media they post pictures of their latest exotic bud. Snoop Dogg has even become “a self proclaimed” advocate for legalization of Marijuana for recreational use.
Rapper Eminem, in recent years has shown his appreciation for prescription medication, with songs like “Purple Pills”, in which the video mimics a psychedelic high. His addiction got so bad that he eventually had to enter rehab and put his career on hold.
It is rare to hear that your favorite rapper, died of a drug overdose but now a days everybody sipping Sizzurp in double cups, of course! The new favorite drank that has urban artists and other celebrities all over Hip hop, in the hospital for “exhaustion”.
This “purple drank” is the culprit behind Lil Wayne being hospitalized in 2013 for seizures after a reported Sizzurp binge. That is when his struggles with lean became apparent because he was so close to dying from that incident. He attempted to stay clean but as of lately he’s been pictured in clubs while globetrotting with what appears to be double cups.
What is Sizzurp?
Aka. lean, purple drank, dirty sprite.
Is a slang term used to describe a concoction that includes a prescription-strenghth cough syrup, codeine (an opiate) and promethazine (a downer). The cough syrup is usually taken in doses much higher than recommended by the label.
Preferably mixed with Sprite or Mountain Dew and adding a Jolly Rancher at the end for a tangy flavor. It’s purple color usually comes from the dyes in the syrup. It’s effects are reported to be euphoric. Along with an immediate motor-skill impairment, lethargy, drowsiness, and a dissociative feeling from all parts of the body.
Most users like the relaxing feeling when they lean, they are after the calming effects of the mixture, but it’s usually sipped along with marijuana and alcohol.
History of Sizzurp
Sizzurp is said to have originated around the 1960’s in Houston, Texas. Blues musicians from the third and fifth ward in Houston, would take Robitussin and cut it with beer, eventually the beer would be substituted by wine.
Later on in the 80’s and 90’s the formula was made a bit more sophisticated by naming codeine promethazine cough syrup, lemon-flavored soda and Jolly Ranchers as the main ingredient to this sedating bomb.
Sizzurp is even responsible for inspiring “chopped and screwed” a style of hip hop music characterized by taking a beat and slowing it down, mimicking the effects of the purple drank.
It was through “chopped and screwed” that DJ Screw was able to popularize drinking Sizzurp. It first became popular for Houston rappers to sip lean but then through songs like “Sippin’ on Some Syrup”, by southern rap legends Three 6 Mafia and UGK, it became popular nationwide.
The popularity of lean is dangerous. It takes away the severity of drinking this highly medicated concoction. There are many songs that suggest that drinking lean is cool but the reality of it is, that it contains a controlled substance, which taken in large quantities can cause major health issues, possibly death.
Dangers of Sipping Sizzurp
In 2004, the University of Texas found that 8.3% of secondary school students in Texas had taken codeine syrup to get high. The DEA reports busts involving codeine syrup all over the U.S primarily in Texas and Florida. It has become a trend to sip Sizzurp, everywhere. It went from being a party drink made famous by hip hop music to a dangerous controlled substance, disguised by teens and passed around in school.
One of the main reasons people enjoy lean and come back for more, is because of it’s sweet and tangy flavor used to mask the medicine taste. This might be very hazardous if the drink is left unattended around children. It is alarming when controlled substances are being sweetened and dangerously mixed to create something so potent that it can cause respiratory depression.
It also causes:
slower heart rate
lack of coordination
It has been widely speculated that the 2007 death of rapper Pimp C, from rap duo UGK overdosed on Sizzurp. Although the coroner found that the levels of codeine/promethazine were not enough to cause death, the effects of the codeine on his respiratory system along with his sleep apnea could have been at fault.
Lyrics suggest that Lil Wayne may have been using lean for years now, in spite of the legal trouble he’s been in due to sipping Sizzurp. In a song called “Lock and Load” from 2005 he raps, “Im probably drinkin’ that syrup/ Thinking I won’t slip/ Even though I’m leaning like a broken hip”.
The most ironic story was about DJ Screw, who was basically responsible for creating a style of rap that glamorized Sizzurp. He made it so popular to lean and had urban communities dancing and singing to his codeine-laced tracks. He actually died of a codeine-promethazine-alcohol overdose on November 16, 2000. It’s not surprising that he leans, what is surprising is that he’s been sipping Sizzurp for years and he was still a victim of a drug overdose.
Stop sipping Sizzurp now! This is a medicine laced drink that might relax you but you might not wake up from it the next time. It takes just a little extra to send you into respiratory or cardiac arrest and mixing it with other drugs or alcohol can cause even more adverse effects.
Dependency on sizzurp is real! The concoction itself has no smell, taste great and can be easily masked. Making it a perfect for teens to conceal Sizzurp.
If you or any of your loved ones are using Sizzurp please get some help now. The most dangerous reason to stay away from it is, that you build a lot of tolerance for it over time. This makes you want more and more, making the user want to increase dosage. Most of sizzurp overdoses happen this way. It is easy to take to much of it because of it’s tasty flavor.
So please get help or watch the signs that your loved ones are giving off, be a source of support if there is dependency.