She did what?

Monday morning was a mess of stories about the 2013 VMAs. Who won what, N*SYNC’s blast from the past, all of Lady Gaga’s wardrobe changesbut most of all one performance. This performance sent T.V. stations, newspapers, and blogs ablaze. Anonymous writers and named writers alike converged all over the web stating their views on the risqué performance.  Why not toss in my two cents? What better day to talk about this than HUMP DAY! (/kidding)

If you have absolutely no clue what we’re talking about, I commend you. If you’re curious, click here, just be aware that it’s NSFW.

First and foremost, am I the only one who thought that Thicke’s outfit was the 2013 embodiment of Beetlejuice? Bwah ha ha ha. I’m glad I’m not the only one… (see image below).

The VMAs and MTV have a reputation of pushing boundaries and showcasing crazy shows. Don’t believe me? Here’s just a few savory moments. Every year there’s always something that becomes so outlandish that it floods the news waves and Internet for a few weeks afterwards. Case in point: Madonna’s original kiss. It is always a  flashy and carnal spectacle. Why are we surprised? Why is there more fuss than usual?

Think back a few years to 2006. Hannah Montana was plastered everywhere. Sweet, charming, and cute little Hannah Montana. The goodie-two-shoes who loved her father, stood up for her friends, and had little quirky adventures on the Disney network. All my little cousins and nieces loved the show, knew every last word to her songs, loved the clothes, and if you didn’t get them some sort of Hannah Montana memorabilia for their birthday or Christmas presents, lawd help you. I didn’t understand the craze –  mostly because I lived through the Mickey Mouse Club days of Justin Timberlake and Brittany Spears… but that’s neither here nor there.

Now jump ahead to 2009. Miley broke away from her ‘chains’ at Disney and the world started to know her as more than just “Oh you’re Hannah Montana!” Since then she’s been testing boundaries, changing her look, changing her style, etc… It hasn’t all been pretty. In fact she’s been on the grittier side of fame since her new look this year. Personally, I find her look to be a cross between Madonna and P!nk. She’s 20, has a nimble body, the fame, the money, gets invited to all the swankiest parties, etc… And we wonder why she’s gone off the deep end?

With great power comes great responsibility, right?

What would you do if you had her status, reputation, etc? You’re performing at one of the hands-down, most ridiculously extravagant, most crazy venues of the year. You’re going up against the queen of weird outfits, one Lady Gaga. Still, would you do the same thing? There were a myriad of different possibilities for her joint performance with Thicke, Chainz, and Lamar. With all the ridiculous, sexually oriented choreography aside – that performance made absolutely no sense. Creepy teddy bears, a nonsensical foam hand (complete with pink nail polish), and ‘hot’ football players carrying what looked like to be poorly created crepe paper crafts. No. Sense. At. All.

So what caused the uproar? Well, remember that Hannah Montana craze… thousands upon thousands of girls grew up with the Disney icon, looked up to that pop sensation, and still somewhat follow her. Add in the fact that their parents were probably watching the show with them or caught it during the 5am news the next day and VOILÀ! Let the shtako-storm of slut-shaming commence.

Now, to be fair, I’m not condoning what she did. I do think she crossed a MAJOR line and instead of artsy I thought her performance was that of a desperate young woman grasping for the best of show performance that turned out to be an homage to all the horrible strippers of the last century. Her performance left me wanting my 6 minutes back.  Twerking should never be done either in public or in private and especially not wearing a nude colored bikini rubbing up against someone whose wardrobe is taken straight from a Tim Burton movie (oh and did we mention that guy is married?). How she treated her on-stage cast (the WoC wearing life-sized teddy bears on their backs or the woman who was passing out stuff on stage with the full backside) was completely degrading and disrespectful. And for gawdsakes does she know how to keep her tongue in her mouth?

It’s events like this that make me wary of the differences between my generation growing up and the kids/tweens/teens growing up today. It hasn’t even been that long. I’m in my twenties! There’s such a push to grow up and embrace the moment because “Y.O.L.O.” In a media-driven culture, image is everything. Status is everything. You don’t have to treat anyone with respect. You must look and act a certain way to get the attention of the opposite sex or just attention in general. If you don’t, well tough kittens.

It’s dren. Complete and total dren.

and this is for all the young ladies and gents out there

     Look inside to find who you are rather than clinging to the latest fashion or fad. Billions upon billions of dollars are spent world wide in the fashion industry to convince you that unless you wear a certain clothing line or brand that you’re sub-par. They lie. They just want more money. Sure you can enjoy entertainment and laugh about the latest movies and celebrities, but don’t take their actions to heart. You certainly don’t have to mimic them. “You only live once” is a horrible excuse used to throw caution to the wind and do something really stupid that you’ll regret later. You have the rest of your life to experience and there is no sense frelling your life over while you’re a teenager. 

    Twerking and sultry dance moves only bring the wrong kind of attention at your age. Oh and you don’t have to show off what ‘your momma gave you’ either. Less is more and nobody wants to buy the DVD when they can stream it online for free. Young guys have just as hard of a time controlling their hormones as you. We live in a far-from-perfect world and there are lots of people who will take advantage of  a situation if given the chance. As much as you may hate it, you are still a kid. There’s no shame in being just a kid. Embrace it. Take care of your body, don’t trash it. You will age, just like everyone else. The more you act out, party and abuse your body now – the more you’ll pay for it later. 

    Try to listen to your elders (be it parents, adults, older people who you look up to, etc…). Many times they’ve gone down a similar road and know a thing or two about what you’re going through. It sucks, just take it with a grain of salt. Adults and parents aren’t out to get you or to make your life horrible. It may feel like it now and that’s in part because you’re changing and your perception is out of whack. Thank you puberty. 

If you decide that you’re ready for sex, give it another thought, and another. Don’t rush into it if you’re not absolutely 100% ready. Don’t ever think that just because you don’t put out (in one way or another) means that you’re not worth the other person’s time. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. If someone is pushing you to have sex or do something you don’t feel comfortable doing, get away from them. You are far too precious. It takes just one time of being stupid about sex to alter the course of your life forever.

The Internet is both a wonderful and horrible place. There are a lot of people who hide behind the anonymity of the internet that will hate on everything and everyone just because they can. Never take their harsh words to heart. If you feel the need to troll, think about what that might do to the person you’re trolling. Follow Wil Wheaton’s law and “DON’T BE A DICK!”

Everything will be okay. Believe in who you are.  You are already beautiful / handsome. Don’t let anyone tell you that in order to keep their love or their friendship that you have to sacrifice bits of yourself or your beliefs. There is still good in the world. You just have to open your eyes.

/gets down off of the soap box.

I do think that everybody slut-shaming her should step back and think about it from a different perspective. It’s so easy to point fingers and judge, but we can rise above it. You are more than welcome to have your own opinions, but consider how the events leading up to this have shaped this young lady. It’s a double-edged sword. There are tons of people on both sides of the debate. Many questions such as “Is Miley Cyrus a whore?” “Is Cyrus a horrible person?” “Isn’t she aware of what she’s doing?”

Very few people even touched on the topic of how Cyrus was man-handling her background singers / extras. I think out of all her performance, that’s what made me the most disgusted. People are NOT property. Women (no matter the color of their skin) are NOT property. They are not toys. This isn’t even the feminist in me talking, this is the 21st century human tired of people treating others like crap just because they think that “it looks good” or “they’re better than everyone else due to status.” 

Her actions are undoubtedly going to be regretted down the line. She’s lost a lot of her following. Some have been drawn to her because of her carefree actions. Lots of “I’m praying for Miley Cyrus” going around, too. Unfortunately, prayers aren’t going to help/stop her actions. She will have to hit her own road blocks before she will change, and that’s only if she wants to. What’s done is done! Maybe this will be a big enough wake-up call for the world and maybe it will just fade like every other pop-culture snafu. Maybe parents and adults will take this and learn from it… just maybe some lesson will be able to be taken away from this, however big or small. What has fame, fortune, and culture done to us?

She isn’t the first famous young person to go off the deep end. Remember Brittany Spears, Lindsey Lohan, Macauley Culkin, Edward Furlong, Amanda Bynes, The Hilton sisters,  River Phoenix… Young people in general have a wonderful tendency to get famous and go crazy. There will always be young stars like this and just like every other time this has happened, the public will be in an uproar and then it will fade to nothing more than an internet meme.

I’m not saying that every young famous person goes nuts. For every Lindsey Lohan you’ll have a wonderful Natalie Portman or Emma Watson. I’m thankful for those people. Makes me wonder what the differences are between these two types of budding stars. Is it their upbringing, their life experiences up until that point, or is it simply the head on their shoulders?

With all the backlash that has arisen from her performance on Sunday night, Cyrus has posted even more rebellious photos and tweets. Again, she’s doing what she wants because she’s a famous singer right at the dawn of her twenties. She’s lashing back at everyone with a  “How dare you judge me?” attitude.  It’s for attention. Any attention is good attention, right?

Please feel free to voice your opinions in the comments below, everyone is entitled to theirs as I am to mine. All I ask is that no trolling or comment hate take place. Just speak your piece and move on.

Here are some additional articles about this event. Take a look, they’re all interesting and worth a moment of your time. If you have a link you’d like us to share, leave it in the comments below and we’ll add it to our lovely little list.

http://groupthink.jezebel.com/solidarity-is-for-miley-cyrus-1203666732

http://roadkillgoldfish.com/2013/08/26/dear-daughter-let-miley-cyrus-be-a-lesson-to-you/#comments

http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2013/08/26/miley_cyrus_was_trying_to_scandalize_us_with_her_vma_performance_don_t_let.html

http://www.wwl.com/Scoot-Blog—Miley-Cyrus—a-sexual-train-wreck-/13069478?pid=349562

http://groupthink.jezebel.com/dear-miley-keep-your-fucking-hands-to-yourself-1201998015

http://jezebel.com/miley-cyruss-x-rated-vma-performance-horrifies-everyon-1200472179

http://www.newstatesman.com/culture/2013/08/miley-cyrus-vmas-six-minute-guide-prejudices-entertainment-industry

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/anne-theriault-/miley-cyrus-vma-performance_b_3819177.html?utm_hp_ref=tw

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I will close with a quote that I take truly to heart:
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…” -Dr. Seuss, Oh the Places You’ll Go.

1 Comment

  • M says:

    I’m a fourteen year old sophmore and can I just add a few words to your lovely article? You were spot on, I just thought I’ve seen all these articles from adults, but no teens so here…

    Honestly, I believe in chivalry, dignity, self respect and when I look up to someone it’s because they’re classy or elegant or even well-mannered. If I like a boy it’s because he has standards. He respects himself and others and stands up for what he knows. People who have enough self confidence to carry themselves with dignity are attractive, not boys with Y.O.L.O beanies.

    When kids at my high school crack inappropriate jokes, I’m disgusted. Being inappropriate is NOT attractive it’s stupid, repulsive, and just gross. When I saw those stars on that stage I was utterly revolted. It was just nasty. How did that get on air? Is that even legal?!

    And frankly, I’m disappointed that media has hit an all time low and isn’t about to get any better. It’s a shame really. That people can become so focused and attached to temporal things- drugs, sex, money- that they forget that when they die it doesn’t matter how much money you had, or whether or not you were famous. Once you’re dead, you’re dead. No more body for personal pleasure. No more fame. No more drugs. You really do only live once and whether or not you believe in an afterlife, we can all agree once you’re dead, you’re buried. It doesn’t matter if you were a lewd Miley Cyrus who made a fool of herself onstage. My point is why waste your whole life on things that don’t matter? On things that won’t make you happy?

    Carry yourself with dignity. Focus on things that truly bring joy, not just pleasure, and let Miley Cyrus be a lesson to you.

    -M

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