When you’re an elementary rapper who relies primarily on elementary lyrics it shouldn’t come as a surprise when a bigger, more popular classmate comes in and steals your homework. And in this case that’s being extremely generous to both parties.

Just recently Lil Reese came out against 2 Chainz alleging the latter stole some of his lyrics, which is like accusing someone of stealing something as generic as the Happy Birthday song.

The lyrics in question can be found on Reese’s “On My Soul” where he rhymes, “You’s a woulda, shoulda, coulda nigga.” He claims that 2 Chainz stole it by rhyming “You a woulda, coulda, shoulda ass nigga” on the song “Wuda Cuda Shuda.” Eerily similar, yes, but far from highway robbery like Reese is making it out to be.

He’s not joking either, he’s genuinely upset, which makes it even funnier. The phrase is as common as a Chuck Mangione record in the bargain bin, and if it’s to play out like Reese wants it to, old Fred Wesley has a gripe too. It’s ludicrous, and more than likely a publicity stunt drummed up by Lil Reese and for all we know 2 Chainz. It’s not a new technique and it’s a fairly easy ploy to sniff out – where there’s smoke there’s fire.

What this represents, however, is something else altogether different. Something that neither of them may realize. It speaks to a larger happening in rap, a collision that was bound to happen. Mainstream rap can be repetitive, sticking almost exclusively to one of the following tropes: money, drugs, violence, women. It’s disgustingly boring. Add a willingness to adhere strictly to a dry well vocabulary and what you have is a 30-car pileup waiting to happen. The shock is that it hasn’t happened sooner.

You could essentially flip flop 2 Chainz’s catalog with Reese’s and no one would be the wiser. You wouldn’t lose a single thing. It’s all the same, just a slightly different package. It’s like a series of concentric circles going round and round in loops with each circle waiting patiently for its turn in the middle – mind-numbing and offensive.

Lil Reese and 2 Chainz are both right in that they are totally 100 percent wrong. 2 Chainz didn’t steal Reese’s verse but Reese is right in saying that it sounds exactly like his. Both deserve the old heave ho, both are products of a machine, and both get way more love than they deserve. Hopefully this fender bender will shine a light on just how absurd mainstream rap has become, and we can avoid another mess. Welcome to the bottom.